Ige considering when and how to further welcome back tourism in Hawaii

DKI Airport, Honolulu. HNN
DKI Airport, Honolulu. HNN(HNN File)
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 6:36 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - As long as COVID cases remain low, Gov. Ige is ready to consider ways to further expand tourism in the coming weeks.

“I’m cautiously optimistic the trend will continue and we’ll be able to relax restrictions and get back to normal. I am hopeful that our holiday season, Thanksgiving and Christmas will be significantly better than last year,” the governor told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Monday.

The Governor discouraged tourists from coming here in late summer, when cases were at an all-time high and hospitals were pushed to the brink. His message had a small impact leading to a dip in visitor counts.

Since then, daily cases counts have lowered. Before restarting any tourism-related marketing, he says he’s working with the industry to make sure restaurants and hotels are properly staffed to handle an increase over the winter.

“We want to make sure when we invite people back, we have space and restaurants and other activities for them to do. So we will work through this week to look at how and when to do that. As we see trends continue, and we see lower and lower cases counts, we will be inviting tourists back and it’s just a matter of how we would do that,” Ige added.

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