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Living in the Cayman Islands
A practical guide to the way of life in the Cayman Islands
Living in the Cayman Islands can be a great experience for expats: What’s not to love about sunshine, secluded beaches, and tax exemptions? Read our guide on living in the Cayman Islands for info on healthcare, security, transport, and more.
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Life in the Cayman Islands
Healthcare in the Cayman Islands
If you are an expat living in the Cayman Islands you can access a very high standard of healthcare. Since 1997, every resident of the territory has been required to hold at least a basic level of private sector health insurance, paid for on a 50/50 basis by both themselves and their employer. Private clinics are dotted all over the Caymans, some run by US-based doctors who will visit the islands on call. Similarly, high standards of dentistry and other specialized fields can be found there.
The state runs its side of the medical service through the Public Health Department, which operates Health Centers all over the territory, as well as taking responsibility for immunization, genetics, and nutrition. Those who live in the Cayman Islands can access three full service hospitals: Chrissie Tomlinson Memorial Hospital on Grand Cayman, the Caymans Islands Hospital on the same island, and Faith Hospital on Cayman Brac.
Transportation in the Cayman Islands
Getting around is not too tricky if you live in the Cayman Islands, with a few different options available. Driving is the most popular. Any resident with an international driving license from any Geneva contracting state will be able to take to the road there. Once that expires or after a maximum duration of 12 months, however, you will have to take a written test to get a full Cayman driving license. If, instead, you hold a regular domestic driver’s license from your home country, then you will be slightly more limited. You can still drive in the Cayman Islands for six months after you register as a resident before taking the written test.
The roads are generally quite safe, observing the British rules of driving on the left hand side with speed limits of about 30 miles per hour in the busy areas and about 40 miles per hour out on the quieter roads. Traffic is rarely a problem either and taxis are one alternative option for those who do not want to drive themselves. Buses can be a bit of a patience tester at times, though the system is improving. Most of them leave and terminate at the Public Library in George Town from 6am to 12am.
Safety and Security in the Cayman Islands
Living in the Cayman Islands is very safe for expats and natives alike. A small country that’s big on international business, education and attracting overseas investment, the local authorities do a good job of keeping things running smoothly. In fact, it has one of the lowest violent crime rates of any state in the world. It is probably the most secure country in the Caribbean and there are no areas of the island to avoid.
That being said, like anywhere, there are criminals in the Caymans. If you do become the victim of crime, the number for the Royal Cayman Police is 911. In particular, you should be careful with your passport as trying to replace a passport in the Caymans may not be possible. If you do lose your passport, be sure to contact the police immediately as you will need to sort out emergency papers a soon as possible if you want to travel.
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