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Contact R&D’s Tourism Specialist

The Department of Research and Development’s Tourism Program provides active leadership to strengthen and enhance Hawai‘i Island’s visitor industry. It’s efforts are directed by the by the Hawai‘i Island Tourism Roadmap

The Tourism Program supports cooperative marketing programs, community festivals and sporting events, visitor arrival and departure experiences as well as new tourism products. 


LAVA EVENT VISITOR INFORMATION: See statement from the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority:


Hawai‘i is Open for Business: There is absolutely no reason for visitors planning a trip to the Hawaiian Islands to change or alter their leisure or business plans.

Air Access: All flights into the Hawaiian Islands are operating normally.

Accommodations and Activities: All accommodations, activities and attractions throughout the Hawaiian Islands are operating normally, with the exception of those in the area affected by the volcanic activity on the island of Hawai‘i.

Remote Location on the Island of Hawai‘i’s East Side: None of the Hawaiian Islands are affected by Kīlauea volcano except a remote area along the Lower East Rift Zone on the island of Hawaii’s east side, Kīlauea Summit and surrounding areas.

Kīlauea Summit Activity: Steam and ash outbursts from Halema‘uma‘u crater are occurring in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park (approximately 40 miles away from the Lower East Rift Zone) and being monitored. This is a natural occurrence as rocks fall into the crater and magma interacts with the groundwater (water table).

Air Quality: Air quality remains largely unchanged with this situation. However, air quality near where the volcanic activity on the island of Hawai‘i is occurring can be hazardous (SO2-sulfur dioxide) and light ash fall may be present. Officials are continuing to monitor air quality.

For more information and links, please visit the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority’s Special Alert Page at


Google “Trekker” Virtual Tours on Hawai‘i Island - This program allows virtual tours to be placed on Google Maps. For more information, click here.

Hawai‘i Tourism Authority Funding Programs in 2019

Hawai‘i Tourism Authority announced that funding support will be provided to qualified applicants for programs in 2019 that perpetuate Hawaiian culture, preserve Hawai‘i’s natural resources and present community-based festivals and events.

HTA Issues RFPs to Help Fund Programs Supporting Hawaiian Culture, Natural Resources, and Community-Oriented Events in 2019

For Immediate Release: June 13, 2018
HTA Release (18-34)

2018-06-13 HTA RFPs to Support 2019 Community Programs.pdf

HONOLULU – The Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) today issued three Request for Proposals offering to provide funding support to qualified programs that will perpetuate Hawaiian culture, preserve natural resources and present community events in 2019.

HTA awarded a total of $3.5 million to 124 community-focused programs statewide in 2018.

Interested applicants are encouraged to review and download the RFPs from HTA’s website for three programs – Kukulu Ola, Aloha Aina and Community Enrichment – each of which are designed to help improve Hawaii’s quality of life for residents while also enhancing the visitor experience.

“These programs and the support provided to community-minded individuals and organizations are essential to balancing tourism’s benefits with its impacts on how we enjoy life in the Hawaiian Islands,” said George D. Szigeti, HTA president and CEO. “I encourage anyone with a commitment to make Hawaii a better place to review these RFPs and see how HTA can become their partner in fulfilling their vision for a thriving community.”

The three community-based programs for which HTA has issued RFPs to provide funding support in 2019 are as follows.

Community Enrichment (RFP 19-01): HTA is supporting community-oriented programs, festivals and special events promoting culture, education, health and wellness, nature, agriculture, sports, technology and “voluntourism” for the enjoyment of residents and visitors.

Kukulu Ola (RFP 19-02): HTA is seeking programs that enhance, strengthen and help to perpetuate the Hawaiian culture by supporting cultural practitioners, craftsmen, musicians and artists.

Aloha Aina (RFP 19-03): HTA is supporting programs that help preserve and enhance the quality of Hawaii’s treasured natural resources for the enjoyment of current and future generations.

The deadline for applicants to submit proposals to HTA seeking funding support from any of the three program categories is Friday, August 3, 2018, at 4:30 p.m.

Program applications are available at HTA’s website at

All inquiries should be directed to Ronald Rodriguez, HTA procurement officer and contract specialist, at

RFP Informational Briefings
HTA is hosting free public informational briefings on all islands at the following locations to help interested applicants with their understanding of the RFP application and award process to receive funding support. Interested applicants are encouraged to attend and have their questions answered. Download the Informational Briefings Flyer.

 For more information and program application please visit Hawai‘i Tourism Authority’s website.

2017 Hawai‘i Tourism Authority  Community Enrichment Program (CEP) awardees.


Hawai‘i Tourism Authority Reports

The following visitor industry reports compiled by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA) can be found at HTA’s Research & Reports Webpage:

National Park Visitor Statistics 

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