The Kona Coast of Hawaii Big Island

In an effort to curb certain problematic issues affecting the Hawaiian Islands, the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) and the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB) together are launching a new visitor campaign called the “Kuleana Campaign”.

Kuleana translates as “responsibility”, and conveys the Hawaiian people’s collective commitment to preserving the beauty and richness of their homeland—an ethos which they hope that tourists will also embrace.

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The campaign is part of a multi-pronged approach for educating visitors on being mindful of cultural and environmental etiquette during their stay on the islands.

A primary vehicle for the Kuleana Campaign consists of a series of fifteen-, 30- and 60-second videos, aimed at addressing several of the tourism challenges currently facing each county.

Targeted videos were created for Oahu, Maui County, Kauai, and Hawaii Island focusing on such topics as local culture, ocean safety and conservation, land safety, astute renting, and the Pono tourism movement. “Pono” is a Hawaiian word having a multi-faceted meaning, but, concisely, it connotes an ethos of respect, uprightness, prosperity and well-being.

“Many travelers visiting the Hawaiian Islands don’t necessarily understand why we stay on the trail when we hike, why we care about protecting our reefs, and many of the dangers they need to be mindful of,” said Jay Talwar, HVCB’s chief marketing officer. “Rather than scold them, we felt that, if our residents shared the ‘whys’ behind appropriate behavior, then most visitors would follow along; in other words, if we don’t show them the trail, how can we expect them to stay on it? That’s what our new Kuleana Campaign aims to do.”

The HTA and HVCB are collaborating with several air carriers, including Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Hawaiian Airlines and Southwest Airlines, to show passengers these videos prior to arriving in the islands. Some statewide hotels are also featuring the “Kuleana” videos as part of their in-room entertainment.

The partnered tourism organizations are still working to expand the videos’ reach into more hotels and airlines, and have already translated them into Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Thanks to geo-targeting technology, guests will also see the “Kuleana” videos as part of their Facebook and Instagram feeds while they’re in Hawaii.

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