Tourism remains Hawai`i’s leading industry. Hawai’i attracts millions of visitors each year from a variety of destinations worldwide. Our programs provide quality standards of practice within the areas of hospitality and tourism leadership, certification, language, and culture.

Contract Contact

Shirley Tsukano
Programs and Contracts Manager
Phone: 808 734-9701

Edwin Timoteo
Program Developer
Phone: 808 734-9152

Heather Robertson
Workforce Development Specialist
Phone: 808 734-9154


Certification for Hawai‘i's Professional Tour Guides

This Certification recognizes that a professional tour guide has met the required knowledge, skills, and competencies that align with the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority’s Professional Standards. It is an updated Certification to the original Professional Standards Tour Certification Program that was established in 1993 by the Hawai‘i State Tourism Training Council and sanctioned by the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

Customer Service in Hawai'i Training Program
A “host” representing Hawaii is responsible for conveying a sense or professionalism in all situations, sharing knowledge of the Hawaiian culture with accuracy, displaying diplomacy and protocol in serving visitors and caring for the aina while providing an engaging, memorable and safe travel experience for visitors. During this 40-hour program, you will obtain an understanding of industry standards and expectations, learn to enhance your customer service and cultural awareness skills, learn essential communication, interpretive and storytelling skills and customize tours that create an authentic experience for Hawaii’s visitors. Training is condensed into the following modules:

Certification for Hospitality Supervisors
This certification is designed for individuals who want to learn and apply foundational management concepts and skills. Based on the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s (AHLA) Skill Builders curriculum, these interactive classes are designed to help participants build a foundation of skills to succeed and progress in organizations. Participants will gain knowledge and practical application of essential skills ion the areas of supervision, leadership, time management, communication, handling problems and conflict, orientation and training, motivation and team building, staffing and scheduling, as well as improving employee performance. Upon successful completion of the class and certification exam, participants will receive the AHLA’s Certified Hospitality Supervisor designation which is widely recognized within the hospitality industry. Participants must meet certification exam prerequisites and submit an application for the exam.

Cultural Awareness - Business Protocol and Cultural Etiquette
Courses designed to introduce business protocol and cultural etiquette to any individual who regularly interact with visitors from China, Korea, and Japan. Participants will gain a better understanding of international visitor expectations and develop their own customized “quick tip sheet” that relates to individual job duties and responsibilities.

English Language Learning for the Hospitality Industry
This program advances from an introductory to intermediate levels for English language learners of the hospitality industry.