Discover a little more about the Caribbean, the beautiful Cayman Islands, and the ‘Cayman Kind’ approach to life.
Nestled in the turquoise waters of the Western Caribbean, the Cayman Islands is a British Overseas Territory which lies 480 miles south of Miami. The three-island archipelago, Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Cayman are located just 149 miles south of their closest Caribbean neighbour Cuba, and 167 miles northwest of Jamaica.
The Cayman Islands is acclaimed as both an international finance centre and a popular tourist destination. With daily direct flights to Grand Cayman from major North American cities such as Dallas, Chicago, Charlotte, Miami, Tampa, Orlando, New York City and Toronto, the Cayman Islands is easily accessible and one of the most vacationed destinations in the Caribbean. Miami is only an hour away on the plane and you also have access to Cuba, South America and New York with ease.
The Cayman Islands has a population of over 65,000 residents. Approximately 50% of residents are Caymanians and the rest reside/arrive via the work permit process. As a strong expatriate destination, the Cayman Islands has a significant representation of nationals from Canada, the United States, United Kingdom and South Africa.
Cayman has a reputation as one of the safest and most advanced islands located within the Caribbean. There is no income tax in the Cayman Islands, which senior professionals in particular are attracted to and the infrastructure and amenities are world class. Combine this with the famous 7 Mile Beach and the exceptional Camana Bay, and it is no surprise that professionals want to move here to progress their career and improve their lifestyle.
If you are looking to move with a family, Cayman provides all the benefits of a stunning laid-back Caribbean country with excellent services, including a good health care system, a range of schools, and an array of sports opportunities. It is also fair to say that Cayman has an exceptional ‘outdoor and healthy’ attitude to life. Whether you enjoy the beach, running, walking, climbing, scuba diving, swimming or triathlons, the sports community is very active and there is something going on every weekend. Alternatively, if you prefer watching the beach volleyball from the bar with a refreshing cold beer or Cayman Lemonade, then the social scene here is also awash with choice and variety.
The Cayman economy has seen excellent growth over the last 5+ years. As a result, not only are the financial services sector and tourism flourishing but property development, construction, design, architecture and tech services are also developing into important supporting sectors, as a result of the island’s fast paced development. Cayman is a very exciting place to be right now!
The capital of the Cayman Islands, George Town, is on the western shore of Grand Cayman, which is the largest of the three islands and the most populated. The majority of businesses are located in and around George Town or Camana Bay, which sits on the North Sound, yet is only a stones throw from the capital.
Cayman is famous for 7 Mile Beach. This stunning beach, paired with the crystal clear ocean is at the ‘heart’ of living in Grand Cayman and offers the perfect backdrop to the work/life balance that is undoubtedly one of the draws to moving to the Cayman Islands.
Residents tend to live with a 5 mile radius of George Town, including West Bay, 7 Mile corridor, South Sound, Prospect, Savannah and Red Bay. The further ‘East’ you go, the less densely populated it becomes. So depending on what you are looking for, you can live a quieter life (with a slightly longer commute) further east or have everything right on your doorstep for a higher energy social life, for you and your family, in and around the 7 Mile Beach area.
Expats can buy property in the Cayman Islands, unlike some other Caribbean Islands. With the property market and economy showing good growth, this is a good option for people who settle into life in Cayman.
Boasting sunshine all year-round, the temperature in the Cayman Islands, summer or winter, seldom goes lower than 70°F or higher than 90°F. The average temperature is 78°F in the winter and about 86°F in the summer. Water temperatures play an important part of Cayman life and ranges from balmy in winter to warm and delicious in the summer.
Rainfalls occur sporadically throughout the year, while the wettest months are June through November. The hurricane season officially starts 1 June and ends 1 December. For more information, visit the National Weather Service website.
The Cayman Islands, being nearer to the equator, has fairly equal periods of day and night year round and does not adhere to Daylight Savings. All three islands follow -5 hours Coordinated Universal time (UTC). This means the Islands share Eastern Standard Time (EST= -5 UTC) with Miami and New York from November through April. When the USA and Canada switches to Daylight Savings Time in April, Cayman then shares Central Daylight Time (CDT= -5 UTC) with Chicago and Houston.
The Cayman Islands legal system is based on English common law, with the addition of local statutes which have, in many respects, changed and modernized the common law. The Islands have a good legal and judicial system, constantly being upgraded to enhance their safety and reputation as a leading financial centre. The court system is a simple one, with practice and procedure based on English law.
Elections within the Cayman Island take place every four years. The people elect 19 representatives to sit on their behalf in Parliament and the Legislative Assembly. In addition to the 19 elected representatives, two official (nominated) representatives are also included in the Parliamentary process.
The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (RCIPS) provides law enforcement for the three islands. Regular off-shore marine patrols are conducted by the RCIPS and Grand Cayman is a port of call for the British Royal Navy, & United States Coast Guard.
The Cayman Islands have been connected to the United Kingdom since the signing of the Treaty of Madrid in 1670. From that time until 1962, Cayman was linked to Jamaica as a dependency. In 1962, Jamaica chose to become independent, but the Cayman Islands decided to remain a British colony. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office recently discontinued the use of the term “Dependent Territory” and the Islands are now called a “United Kingdom Overseas Territory” (UKOTS).
The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office appoints a Governor, whose responsibilities cover a number of areas including: national security, foreign affairs, police, immigration, the passport office, the postal services and other portfolios such as broadcasting, district administration and the civil service. For more information, visit The Governor’s Office Grand Cayman.
The Cayman Islands also has a team of government representatives in the UK, to support networking and development of international strategy, as well as tourism.
The Cayman Islands has its own currency – the Cayman Islands dollar, noted by CI$ and currency code KYD. The CI dollar is pegged to the US dollar at 1 Cayman Islands dollar = 1.2 U.S. dollars.
Both CI dollars and US dollars are widely accepted throughout the Cayman Islands, and employers typically pay employees in either currency. Almost all shops, restaurants and hotels accept credit cards and there are cash-dispensing ATMs throughout the Cayman Islands.