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Updated Regulations for All Travellers Into the Cayman Islands

COVID - 19 16 Dec, 2021 Follow News

Updated Regulations for All Travellers Into the Cayman Islands

Updates to regulations impacting travel were announced over the weekend. These changes to regulations will reduce the COVID-19 testing window for all passengers travelling into the Cayman Islands as well as unvaccinated persons travelling to the Sister Islands from Grand Cayman. The changes, which take effect on Friday, 17 December, are measures being implemented to increase the protection of our community and health system against the latest COVID-19 variant of concern, Omicron.

“As COVID-19 continues to evolve, the Cayman Islands Government remains vigilant to ensure our health and safety regulations are best suited to protect our citizens, residents, and visitors,” commented the Premier Hon. G. Wayne Panton. “All travellers must stay familiar with the requirements for leaving the country as well as for entering the country you are visiting. It is very important that returning residents understand that these regulations apply to us as well so that we are doing our part in protecting our loved ones and the greater community when we return home.”

• Who is impacted by the changes?

– All travellers age 5 years and older

• What has changed?

– Testing time-frame has been tightened to no earlier than the day before travel. This replaces the previously allowed 72-hour timeframe for pre-travel testing.

* Therefore, an approved test administered after midnight the day before travel is acceptable

* This enables persons with very early or late travel bookings to comply

– Government has updated the definition of ‘departures’ to include the departure of any connecting flights or transit flights to the Islands, where the layover between flights is less than 12 hours

• When does the change take place?

– Friday, 17 December 2021

• Why is this change happening?

– To shorten the time in which a traveller tests negative for COVID-19 and departs their destination

• What tests will be accepted?

– Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test or,

– Accepted antigen-detecting rapid diagnostic, commonly referred to as lateral flow test (LFT)

It should be noted that only tests administered and certified by a health care or testing services provider who is authorised by the local government to provide testing services in the relevant jurisdiction will be accepted.

• Where can persons be tested?

– In the United States of America, United Kingdom, and Canada, testing services are widely available including at drive-thru testing sites and nationwide pharmacies.

– In the Cayman Islands, there are a multitude of participating medical providers including the Health Services Authority (HSA) which offers certified LFT and/or PCR test results specifically for travel. For a list of approved providers, please visit: https://www.visitcaymanislands.com/en-us/travel-requirements/health-services-providers-testing-sites

• Who covers the cost of travel-related testing?

– All travel-related testing is at the cost of the traveller including where travel originates in the Cayman Islands. This is a change in that the Government no longer covers the costs of PCR testing for the purposes of travel.

Further commenting on the updated regulations, the Premier shared: “We all must do whatever we can to ensure that we continue our hygiene and safety practices, take care of our health and wellbeing, and get vaccinated including getting booster shots. It is the personal responsibility of each and everyone of us to take this seriously, to remain informed by reliable sources, and to practice the best safety measures available to us no matter where we are.”

For more information about travel requirements, regulations and other COVID-19 response measures in the Cayman Islands, please visit the official Cayman Islands Government web portal, www.gov.ky/coronavirus.

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