Cayman Islands Plan A Full Tourism Reopening for January 2022

by Carolee Chanona

The Caymans, a cluster of three Caribbean islands covered with tropical forests, punctuated by stalactite-filled caves, and lined with miles of beaches, have always been an easy getaway for those on the East Coast. After all, Grand Cayman—the largest of the islands—is just a 90-minute flight from Miami. And soon, eager travelers can enjoy all of the above with their five-phase plan for fully reopening the destination by January 2022, as announced by Cayman Island Department of Tourism on July 12.

grand cayman cruise tourism

The Cayman Islands, one of the premier Caribbean destinations that includes Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Cayman, has been closed since March 2020, but the new plan could see inbound restrictions starting to ease in August, though a full reopening isn’t expected to happen until 2022. That includes cruise travel, which isn’t part of any of the five phases that the Cayman Islands is planning—under the plan, cruise guests will not be welcomed in until the island fully reopens in January 2022. Here’s what that phased reopening looks like.

Phase 1 – June 2021

The current phase for the Cayman Islands allows for fully vaccinated and securely verified travelers to come into the Cayman Islands with a mandatory five-day quarantine. Unvaccinated travelers would still be subject to a 14-day quarantine.

Phase 2 – Aug. 9

Some travel restrictions will be removed, including the removal of the GPS monitoring. All inbound tourists will still have to apply for entry via the Travel Cayman Portal.

Phase 3 – Sept. 9

As long as the Cayman Islands hits its 80% on-island vaccination status, starting on Sept. 9, a “limited” number of vaccinated tourists will be again welcomed in. Cruises will still be prohibited and all inbound travelers will have to apply via the destination portal.

Phase 4 – Oct. 14

Quarantine requirements will be removed for all fully vaccinated tourists, while unvaccinated tourists will still need to undergo a 14-day quarantine upon approval. All travelers will still need to be verified via the Travel Cayman Portal.

Phase 5 – Nov. 18

Unvaccinated children will again be welcomed in without quarantine, as long as they are traveling with an adult, vaccinated traveler.

“Since March 2020, the Cayman Islands has been deliberate in all efforts to protect our people and visitors; from rapid and widespread testing, investing in the Caymanian workforce and implementing a phased strategy to safely reopen our shores to luxury-seeking visitors, the health and safety of our community was paramount in all decisions. Our guests will appreciate the impactful developments and enhancements we’ve made to the destination – surely proving that Cayman is worth the wait.”

After that, starting on Jan. 27, all travelers will again be welcomed in without quarantine travel restrictions, including cruise travel. While the destination’s plan to reopen is slower than some of its peers, the Minister for Tourism and Transport, Hon. Kenneth Bryan, said that the plan was built in a deliberate way to ensure a safe return.

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