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Survey: Majority of residents prefer limiting number of Hawaii visitors

Visitors in Hawaii (Photo by Kat Wade/Getty Images)
Visitors in Hawaii (Photo by Kat Wade/Getty Images)(Getty Images)
Published: Jun. 2, 2021 at 8:14 AM HST|Updated: Jun. 2, 2021 at 2:20 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - With an increase in visitors coming to Hawaii since the start of the pandemic, a new survey showed a majority of residents actually prefer limiting the number of visitors.

In the survey conducted by the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s Public Policy Center, researchers polled 700 residents to understand their views on the tourism industry.

About 52% of respondents said they prefer limiting the number of visitors, with even stronger support among neighbor island and Native Hawaiian residents.

Among their findings, the survey also showed that a majority of residents support state regulations for visitors.

These regulations include charging entry fees for visitors at parks or other “hotspots” during peak times or requiring visitors to make reservations in advance. About 78% were strongly or somewhat in favor of these visitor charges.

The survey also showed that there was a strong consensus of residents who felt the state should play a role in managing the tourism industry.

Support for regulating vacation rentals outside resort areas was almost 75%, and some 52% of respondents opposed allowing casino gambling in the state.

In terms of the state’s response to COVID and tourism, about 50% of respondents rated the government’s performance as “fairly bad.”

Some 45% wanted both vaccination and testing requirements for travelers to and from Hawaii and 67% said they want the quarantine requirements the same for all counties.

Furthermore, when asked whether the state should focus on tourism recovery or economic diversification this year, residents said they want the state to focus on both equally. But when given the choice between the two, more people voted in favor of diversifying the economy.

To read the full report, click here.

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