By weight, honey bees may be the state’s most valuable export. According to the Hawai’i Agricultural Statistics Service, agricultural sales were US$370.9 million from diversified agriculture, US$100.6 million from pineapple, and US$64.3 million from sugarcane. Hawai’i’s relatively consistent climate has attracted the seed industry, which is able to test three generations of crops per year on the islands, compared with one or two on the mainland. Seeds yielded US$264 million in 2012, supporting 1,400 workers.
In 2003, according to state government data, there were over 6.4 million visitors, with expenditures of over $10 billion, to the Hawai’ian Islands. Due to the mild year-round weather, tourist travel is popular throughout the year. The major holidays are the most popular times for outsiders to visit, especially in the winter months. Substantial numbers of Japanese tourists still visit the islands but have now been surpassed by Chinese and Koreans due to the collapse of the value of the Yen and the weak Japanese economy.
The United States military, with approximately 75,000 members stationed in the islands, provides substantial economic support as well.
A system of state highways encircles each main island. Only Oʻahu has federal highways, and is the only area outside the contiguous 48 states to have signed Interstate highways (H1, H2, H3). Narrow, winding roads and congestion in populated places can slow traffic. Each major island has a public bus system.
Honolulu International Airport, which shares runways with the adjacent Hickam Field, is the major commercial aviation hub of Hawai’i. The commercial aviation airport offers intercontinental service to North America, Asia, Australia and Oceania.
Hawai’ian Airlines, and Mokulele Airlines use jets to provide services between the large airports in Honolulu, Līhuʻe, Kahului, Kona and Hilo. Island Air serves smaller airports. These airlines also provide air freight services between the islands. On May 30, 2017, the airport was officially renamed as the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), after U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye.
Airports in Hawai’i with commercial services are:
Hilo, Hawaii ITO Hilo International Airport
Honolulu, Oahu HNL Daniel K. Inouye International Airport
Kahului, Maui OGG Kahului Airport
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii KOA Kona International Airport at Keahole
Kaunakakai, Molokai MKK Molokai Airport
Lanai City, Lanai LNY Lanai Airport
Lihue, Kauai LIH Lihue Airport
Hana, Maui HNM Hana Airport
Kalaupapa, Molokai LUP Kalaupapa Airport
Kamuela (Waimea), Hawaii MUE Waimea-Kohala Airport
Lahaina, Maui JHM Kapalua Airport
Until air passenger services began in the 1920s, private boats were the sole means of traveling between the islands. Seaflite operated hydrofoils between the major islands in the mid-1970s.
The Hawai’i Superferry operated between Oʻahu and Maui between December 2007 and March 2009, with additional routes planned for other islands.
Protests and legal problems over environmental impact statements ended the service, though the company operating Superferry has expressed a wish to recommence ferry services in the future. Currently there is a passenger ferry service in Maui County between Lanaʻi and Maui, which does not take vehicles; a passenger ferry to Molokai ended in 2016.
Flag of Hawai’i:
The current official flag of the U.S. state of Hawai’i (Hawai’ian: Ka Hae Hawaiʻi) had also previously been used by the kingdom, protectorate, republic, and territory of Hawai’i. The flag includes the flag of a foreign country, the Union Jack of the United Kingdom, a remnant of the British Empire’s influence on Hawai’ian history.