By Jennifer KelleherPublished Feb 04, 2018 04:24:00When the ‘snowball’ hits the Hawaiian Islands, it may be the first wave of the summer tourist season, but not everyone is thrilled with the sudden influx of visitors.
In a recent interview with Hawaii magazine, the head of the Hawaii Tourism Department told The News & News that a lot of tourists have been coming for more than a year now.
The department’s tourism director, David Kim, told the magazine that the number of visitors from outside Hawaii has increased in the last two years.
“We had a lot more people come in a couple of years ago, and then we had a few people come back, but we didn’t expect that to increase as much as it did,” Kim said.
“It was like, oh, wait, this is going to be the next bump in the snow.
People are coming in.
I don’t know if it’s because the snow is a little bit softer than normal, but it is a lot softer.”
Kim added that the snowfall in recent years has made the islanders more relaxed about the weather, but added that there is no guarantee that things will stay the same.
“There’s been no increase in tourism,” he said.
“The snow’s gone.
We had a little more snow in the past few years, but that was when it was much softer.
We’re starting to get a little better snow this year.
We have no reason to think that will change.
The next thing that’s going to happen is the heat will come through, and the tourism will start to decrease.”
Hawaii tourism, which has seen a drop in visitation since the mid-1990s, has seen an uptick in visitors in recent months.
The number of Hawaii residents who were surveyed by Hawaii Magazine in February, for instance, was the highest on record, rising nearly 10 percent year-over-year.
Kim said that he believes that more people are choosing to stay home this summer, since it is more convenient to travel to the islands.
“The main thing is getting people to come to the Islands and spend money on the Island,” he told Hawaii Magazine.
“I think the main thing that people are going to get is an experience that’s a little different than the average tourist experience, because there’s no snow and there’s a lot less humidity.”
Kim said the tourism department is also working on a proposal to allow some residents to rent boats from other residents to visit the islands during the winter months.
“That’s going in the works, but I don;t want to talk about it because it’s confidential,” he explained.