North Korea Nuclear Threat: Viral Headlines Aren’t Scaring Hawaii Visitors Away

October 17, 2017

Honolulu Civil Beat:

When Keith Vieira, a long-time Hawaii tourism executive appeared on a panel at the East-West Center last week, he was glad to hear from a fellow panelist that the likelihood of Hawaii getting nuked by North Korea was zero.

In a market where 98 percent of visitors are leisure travelers, he said, any risk of a nuclear attack from Kim Jong Un could be bad news for the visitor industry.

“Even a 1 percent chance would easily stop the flow” of tourists to Hawaii, said Vieira, a former senior vice president of Starwood Hotels & Resorts. “You’re simply not going to travel to places where you’re concerned about safety, and if you’re an Asian traveler, it’s multiplied quite a lot.”

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