Big Island Feature
Tourism and the Economy
The over-$14.3-billion tourism industry represents a third of Hawaii's state income. With a record number of visitors coming to the Islands in 2012, tourism is poised to recover from the economic downturn of previous years. Arrivals from Asia, Europe, Latin America, Australia, and New Zealand increased by 21.3 percent from 2011. Visitor spending contributes to at least 167,000 jobs locally.
One way the industry has changed has been to adopt more eco-conscious practices that positively impact local communities and the natural environment. More companies are also incorporating authentic Hawaiiana into their programs and aim not only to provide a commercially viable tour but also to ensure that the visitor leaves feeling connected to the host culture.
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