April 2016 E-Bulletin

Aloha Kakou, 

Hawaii's tourism industry enjoyed a strong winter and spring is looking bright. Mahalo to everyone for making Hawaii such a rewarding experience for our guests.

This is a big week for HTA. We are hosting our Spring Marketing Update on April 6 at the Hawaii Convention Center to brief the industry on our tourism marketing activities. 

Our global contractors from North America, Japan, China, Korea, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, Europe, and Oceania, as well as Meet Hawaii, will provide market updates, details on upcoming opportunities, and the outlook for 2016.

We are YOUR team working for Hawaii tourism. We appreciate your continued support and hope to see you on April 6.

Mahalo nui loa, 
Message from George D. Szigeti
President & CEO
Hawaii Tourism Authority
ClimbHI's LEI Program Inspiring Next Generation for Tourism Careers
ClimbHI’s Leadership, Exploration and Inspiration (LEI) program is an HTA-sponsored workforce development initiative created to inspire Hawaii’s youth to pursue careers in our state’s visitor industry.

The 5th annual LEI program is taking place this April. More than 800 high school students and 100 college students from across the state will be participating, as well as 85 businesses.  

LEI 2016 will take place on four islands (Oahu, Maui, Kauai and Hawaii Island) and feature workshops with industry leaders and government officials, hotel tours, and a career fair to help provide our students with the insight and hands-on experience they need to achieve success.  

LEI 2016 Schedule:  
April 6 – Sheraton Kauai
April 8 – Sheraton Waikiki
April 13 – Sheraton Maui
April 15-16 – Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel  

Senate Confirms Kuuipo Kumukahi to HTA Board of Directors
On February 29, the Hawaii State Senate confirmed Kuuipo Kumukahi to serve on the Hawaii Tourism Authority’s Board of Directors.

Kuuipo, a Na Hoku Hanohano award-winning musician known as “The Sweetheart of Hawaiian Music,” is currently the Hawaiian Culture Manager at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki.
Market Highlights
Mele Mei Showcases Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar in L.A. 
HTA is a proud supporter of the 6th Annual Mele Mei, a multi-month long celebration honoring Hawaii’s music, hula and culture.

The annual tradition kicked off at the GRAMMY Museum in Los Angeles with its new exhibit, Ki Hoalu: Honoring the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Tradition.

The celebration featured an intimate concert in the Clive Davis Theater by artists including Charles Brotman, Amy Hanaialii, Raiatea Helm and Jeff Peterson.
HVCB, Island Chapters Blitz Travel Professionals in Major Markets
A sales team represented by the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau and its Island Chapters met with hundreds of travel agents and other industry professionals in major markets to sell the Hawaii experience. The West Coast Sales Blitz took place the week of February 22-26 in San Francisco, San Jose, Sacramento, Long Beach, and San Diego.

Two weeks later, March 14-17, the team hit the road again for the East Coast Sales Blitz in West Orange, NJ, Westchester, NY, New York City, NY, and Falls Church, VA.
ITB Berlin in Germany
Earlier this month, Hawaii Tourism Europe and HTA Brand Manager Caroline Anderson participated in ITB Berlin, one of the world’s largest travel trade shows and tourism conventions.

The team had more than 50 appointments with travel trade and media members over the three-day convention. Hawaii inbound operator, Sun Islands Hawaii, also participated in the Hawaii booth.
Hawaii Tourism Europe  Out & About
HTE’s UK office had an exhibit at the Destinations Travel Show in London in February.

In March, the HTE team conducted media briefings and sales calls of tour operators in Hamburg and London to increase awareness about the variety of products and attractions throughout the Hawaiian Islands.
HTA Joins Launch of U.S.-China Tourism Year 2016 in Beijing
China's value as a growing visitor market was the focus of a special ceremony in Beijing on February 29 to launch U.S.-China Tourism Year 2016.

Throughout the year, the U.S. Department of Commerce and the China National Tourism Administration, in collaboration with Brand USA, and other partners, will host events and activities to promote travel between the two countries.  

Randy Baldemor, chief operating officer, and Jadie Goo, tourism brand manager, attended the kick-off on behalf of HTA, while Reene Ho-Phang, managing director, and Raymond Kong, account director, attended on behalf of HTC.
Alan Wong's Shanghai Grand Opening
Alan Wong’s officially opened in Shanghai on February 26. Hawaii Tourism China played a major role in the preparation and planning of the grand opening event, which was attended by VIP guests including top travel agencies and airlines. There were live hula performances, as well as a grand prize drawing for a free trip to Hawaii.
Hawaii Tourism Taiwan is gearing up for the 2nd annual Hawaii Run taking place in September. The marathon route has been set and HTT is working to secure more partners to join confirmed sponsors Swarovski and Roxy, as well as Momentum, the largest retailer of sporting goods in Taiwan.

Last year’s inaugural Hawaii Run attracted 5,300 runners, and Sports Note, Taiwan’s largest national platform for running events, voted the event in the top three most popular marathons in the country.

Oceania Outbound Travel Soars for Pacific Destinations
Oceania continues to be a strong visitor market for Hawaii, but other destinations in the Pacific Rim are benefiting as well.

Japan was the fastest growing outbound destination for Australian travelers during January, with numbers surging 27.4% over the same period in 2015, making Japan the fourth highest outbound market for Australia behind New Zealand, Indonesia (Bali) and the USA*.   

Other fast growing markets included India, up 13.8%, and Fiji, which rose 11.6%, while the only destination in the top ten to see a decline was Thailand, down 6.3%.  

Despite any exchange rate challenges, New Zealanders continue to set records in outbound travel. The January Department of Statistics figures reflect a record January for outbound travel – up 9% from 2015.

*Numbers from the Australian Bureau of Statistics