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Hawaii Hotel Revenue growing during record COVID-19 numbers

Hawaii Hotels: Starting the year off strong
Hawaii Hotels

“July was a strong month for Hawaii’s hotel industry statewide, with all hotel categories from Luxury Class to Midscale & Economy Class reporting growth in revenue and room rates compared to July 2019,” said John De Fries, Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) President and CEO.

  1. Hawaii hotel room revenues statewide rose to $500.2 million (+1,519.4% vs. 2020, +15.2% vs. 2019) in July.
  2. In July 2021, most passengers arriving from out-of-state to Hawaii and traveling inter-county could bypass the State’s mandatory 10-day self-quarantine with a valid negative COVID-19 NAAT test result through the Safe Travels program.
  3. Individuals who were fully vaccinated in the US could bypass the Hawaii quarantine order beginning July 8.

“We’re encouraged by how the industry has recovered this summer but are concerned as to whether this level of performance will carry over into the fall shoulder season, especially if the impacts of the Delta variant overwhelms Hawaii’s healthcare systems and weakens consumer confidence and travel demand,” De Fries added.

The number of new COVID cases in Hawaii is escalating every single day with reports in the hundreds, way more than what was experienced at the height of when COVID first made its appearance in 2020 with over 300 cases reported in a single day at that time. The shattering number of new cases reached an all-time high of over 1100 this summer. Despite this, tourists are traveling to the islands in droves without any new travel restrictions instituted so far. Not even a demand from the government to make mask-wearing mandatory. In 2020, tourists were being issued citations by the Honolulu Police for not wearing a mask.

Hawaii hotels statewide reported substantially higher revenue per available room (RevPAR), average daily rate (ADR), and occupancy in July 2021 compared to July 2020 when the State’s quarantine order for travelers due to the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in dramatic declines for the hotel industry. When compared to July 2019, statewide RevPAR and ADR were also higher in July 2021 but occupancy was lower.

According to the Hawaii Hotel Performance Report published by the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA), statewide RevPAR in July 2021 was $303 (+718.7%), with ADR at $368 (+121.7%) and occupancy of 82.4 percent (+60.1 percentage points) compared to July 2020. Compared with July 2019, RevPAR was 16.9 percent higher, driven by increased ADR (+21.0%) which offset slightly lower occupancy (-2.9 percentage points).

The report’s findings utilized data compiled by STR, Inc., which conducts the largest and most comprehensive survey of hotel properties in the Hawaiian Islands. For July, the survey included 141 properties representing 45,575 rooms, or 84.3 percent of all lodging properties¹ and 85.6 percent of operating lodging properties with 20 rooms or more in the Hawaiian Islands, including those offering full service, limited service, and condominium hotels. Vacation rental and timeshare properties were not included in this survey.

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Room demand was 1.4 million room nights (+630.5% vs. 2020, -4.8% vs. 2019) and room supply was 1.7 million room nights (+97.8% vs. 2020, -1.5% vs. 2019). Many properties closed or reduced operations starting in April 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to these supply reductions, comparative data for certain markets and prices classes were not available for 2020; and comparisons to 2019 have been added.

Luxury Class properties earned RevPAR of $599 (+1,675.1% vs. 2020, +19.3% vs. 2019), with ADR at $828 (+66.1% vs. 2020, +36.7% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 72.4 percent (+65.6 percentage points vs. 2020, -10.6 percentage points vs. 2019). Midscale & Economy Class properties earned RevPAR of $235 (+471.1% vs. 2020, +56.5% vs. 2019) with ADR at $285 (+117.6% vs. 2020, +60.3% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 82.5 percent (+51.1 percentage points vs. 2020, -2.0 percentage points vs. 2019).

Maui County hotels led the counties in July and achieved RevPAR that surpassed July 2019. RevPAR was $505 (+1,819.7% vs. 2020, +41.1% vs. 2019), with ADR at $618 (+202.5% vs. 2020, +43.0% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 81.7 percent (+68.8 percentage points vs. 2020, -1.1 percentage points vs. 2019). Maui’s luxury resort region of Wailea had RevPAR of $732 (+14.5% vs. 2019²), with ADR at $922 (+32.2% vs. 2019²) and occupancy of 79.4 percent (-12.3 percentage points vs. 2019²). The Lahaina/Kaanapali/Kapalua region had RevPAR of $447 (+6,110.3% vs. 2020, +48.5% vs. 2019), ADR at $533 (+257.1% vs. 2020, +45.8% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 83.8 percent (+79.0 percentage points vs. 2020, +1.5 percentage points vs. 2019).

Hotels on the island of Hawaii reported strong RevPAR growth at $320 (+794.1% vs. 2020, +44.4% vs. 2019), with ADR at $375 (+182.7% vs. 2020, +41.3% vs. 2019), and occupancy of 85.3 percent (+58.3 percentage points vs. 2020, +1.8 percentage points vs. 2019). Kohala Coast hotels earned RevPAR of $498 (+54.1% vs. 2019²), with ADR at $592 (+57.2% vs. 2019²), and occupancy of 84.3 percent (-1.7percentage points vs. 2019²).

Kauai hotels earned RevPAR of $307 (+765.9% vs. 2020, +32.7% vs. 2019), with ADR at $369 (+126.5% vs. 2020, +22.6% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 83.0 percent (+61.3 percentage points vs. 2020, +6.3 percentage points vs. 2019).

Oahu hotels reported RevPAR of $212 (+397.9% vs. 2020, -7.9% vs. 2019) in July, ADR at $259 (+56.0% vs. 2020, -1.1% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 82.0 percent (+56.3 percentage points vs. 2020, -6.0 percentage points vs. 2019). Waikiki hotels earned $202 (+450.1% vs. 2020, -9.5% vs. 2019) in RevPAR with ADR at $244 (+48.9% vs. 2020, -4.2% vs. 2019) and occupancy of 82.9 percent (+60.5 percentage points vs. 2020, -4.9 percentage points vs. 2019).

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About the author

Linda Hohnholz, eTN editor

Linda Hohnholz has been writing and editing articles since the start of her working career. She has applied this innate passion to such places as Hawaii Pacific University, Chaminade University, the Hawaii Children's Discovery Center, and now TravelNewsGroup.

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