HTA splits tourism contract, requests proposals for state’s destination management plan

Waikiki, Hawaii
Waikiki, Hawaii(HNN)
Published: Feb. 14, 2023 at 8:52 AM HST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Moving faster than some expected, the Hawaii Tourism Authority has issued two requests for proposals for the state’s destination management plan.

They said it’s to “procure brand management and marketing services for the United States” and for “destination sterwardship.”

The previous single contract for both functions was held for years by the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau.

More recently it was separately won by HVCB and the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement, each of which filed protests when they didn’t win.

The Ige administration then said there should be two different contracts — one for marketing and another destination management — reflecting concern about tourist behavior and their effect on the environment.

“The solicitation calls for a pre-arrival communications program to educate visitors with specific information about safe, respectful, and mindful travel that will be coordinated with HTA’s on-island programs to provide a seamless message throughout the entire visitor journey,” HTA said.

“Another key emphasis of the marketing will be to drive visitor spending into Hawaii-based businesses as a means to support a healthy economy, including supporting local businesses, purchasing Hawaii-grown agricultural products, and promoting Hawaii-made products.”

The destination management contract outline calls for a tour guide certification program so guides understand Hawaii culture and history.

HTA’s board unanimously voted Dec. 22 to issue two new RFPs following the Dec. 5 cancellation of the prior contract by then DBEDT Director Mike McCartney.

The agency has scheduled pre-proposal briefings on the process for interested applicants via Zoom on Feb. 21 at 8 a.m.

Interested applicants must register their intent to submit proposals by 4:30 p.m. on March 1 and proposals are due to HTA by 2 p.m. on March 30.

For more information, click here.