Border reopening on hold
The premier said of the local transmission cases, “This for us is a game changer. We are pausing… our reopening plan for the rest of this year. We don’t want to be rushing anything, we want to remain composed and carefully consider the various steps we need to put in place to address community spread and ensure we can feel safe and ensure our children are protected,” he said.
Cayman had been scheduled to launch Phase 4 of its reopening plan on 14 Oct. This phase had involved plans to scrap the current five-day quarantine requirement for securely verified vaccinated arrivals.
Panton said that tourists would be allowed to enter Cayman but they will be required to be vaccinated. Unvaccinated residents will be allowed to enter or return to Cayman, but must quarantine for 14 days.
“We will slightly change the approach that has been taken in the past so that people who are unvaccinated are further restricted in terms of coming into our country,” he said. “We absolutely need to do this in order to continue to protect our older vulnerable folks, as well as, specifically, our unvaccinated children.”
Vaccines have not been approved for use by children under the age of 12.
Earlier on Tuesday, the premier stated in a public address that there were currently no plans to reintroduce lockdown in Cayman.
Friday, August 6, 2021
Following the announcement of the Cayman Islands’ reopening plan, attention has shifted to airlift. After all, the success of our reopening plan depends on the resumption of commercial flights.
At a recent meeting of the Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA), Tourism Minister Kenneth Bryan shed some light on when we can expect a return of flights in and out of Grand Cayman’s airport, Owen Roberts International (GCM).
Currently, only two airlines—British Airways and Cayman Airways—have authorization to land. Cayman Airways operates two inbound routes from Miami, FL, and Jamaica. British Airways maintains weekly service between London.
British Airways has announced plans to resume its pre-pandemic flight schedules beginning in September to coincide with Phase 3 of the island’s reopening plan. The airline cited growing demand for their decision.
Cayman Islands Reopening Plan Announced
Thursday, July 8, 2021
It has been 475 days since the Cayman Islands closed its borders to stay over tourism. They emerge from the COVID pandemic victorious with no fatalities, a high vaccination rate of 68%, and recently marked a full year with no community transmission.
Today, the Cayman Islands announced a 5-phase border reopening strategy that will reintroduce tourism beginning on Thursday, September 9, 2021.
Each phase will ease travel restrictions for vaccinated travelers (at first). The immediate goal is to be open to vaccinated arrivals, without quarantine by mid-November, in time for the holidays.
The ultimate goal is to be fully-open, regardless of vaccination status, by late January 2022 .
Phase 2 – Effective August 9, 2021
- ∗ Entry into the Cayman Islands remains limited to local residents and property owners with a mandatory 5-day (vaccinated) or 14-day (unvaccinated) quarantine .
- ∗ GPS wristband monitoring will no longer be required for vaccinated travelers during 5-day self-quarantine.
- ∗ No on-arrival PCR test required for vaccinated travelers.
- ∗ 5-Day self-quarantine for vaccinated travelers. Exit PCR test required.
- ∗ Unvaccinated travelers must still comply with 14-day quarantine, multiple PCR tests, and GPS wristband monitoring.
Phase 3 – Effective September 9, 2021
- ∗ Borders will reopen to vaccinated tourists with a 5-day, self-quarantine upon arrival. Exit PCR test required.
- ∗ Tourists will be permitted to quarantine at all hotels, condos, or villas with periodic spot visits to enforce quarantine.
- ∗ Commercial flights will be coordinated by the Cayman Airport Authority.
- ∗ Cruise ship tourism will remain closed.
Phase 4 – Effective October 14, 2021
- ∗ The 5-day self-quarantine requirement is lifted for all vaccinated arrivals.
- ∗ Vaccinated tourists must pre-register their travel intent and vaccination status with Travel Cayman, Cayman’s online travel approval portal.
- ∗ All unvaccinated travelers must receive entry permission via Travel Cayman and comply with all current 14-day quarantine and entry protocols.
Phase 5 – Effective November 18, 2021
- ∗ Unvaccinated children, aged 11 or younger, will be allowed to travel and stay with vaccinated family, without quarantine.
Full Reopen – Effective TBD
- ∗ The government will reassess the COVID-19 pandemic by January 27, 2022, to determine feasibility of further relaxation of travel and entry restrictions.
- ∗ If the green-light is given, quarantine restrictions may be eliminated for all arrivals, regardless of vaccination status.
- ∗ A reintroduction of limited cruise ship tourism may also be possible.