July 21, 2017

Merrie Monarch draws Airbnb travelers islandwide

Stock Photo - Waving flag with Airbnb logo. Editorial 3D rendering
Copyright: moovstock / 123RF Stock Photo

KAILUA-KONA — Big Island visitors traveling via the popular home sharing website Airbnb this past week for the 54th Annual Merrie Monarch Festival were expected to generate $5.2 million in economic activity through guest spending and host earnings, according to Airbnb.

That’s a 44 percent increase over the $3.6 million generated by Airbnb users during the same time period last year, according to company data.

The company’s data suggests increased use of the site for travelers coming to the Big Island for the festival. Airbnb also reported increased numbers in arrivals to the island for the festival with arrivals this year numbered at 4,726, up 72 percent from 2016.

Of this year’s arrivals, 2,444 were booked in East Hawaii, with 2,282 in West Hawaii.

Only 488 arrivals, or about a tenth of the total arrivals, were specifically in Hilo, but the company’s data says arrivals to Hilo showed a spike in arrivals coming the week of Merrie Monarch compared to the previous and following weeks.

Fifty arrivals to Hilo, for example, came from Honolulu, an increase from just 11 the preceding week. Bookings from Honolulu currently sit at 14 for this week, the data said.Arrivals also spiked this week from Wailuku, Maui — up […]

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