Cayman Islands Fast Facts
Etiquette & Customs — You should pay attention to dress code etiquette in the Cayman Islands, as it remains a 'proper' British crown colony and its residents are often conservative in dress and manners. Avoid wearing bathing suits or scanty beachwear outside of beach areas. Cover up in public areas, especially on the streets of George Town. There are no nude beaches, and public nudity, including topless bathing, is strictly prohibited by law. Visitors will want to wear smart casual tropical resort wear at most restaurants. When attending church, 'Sunday dress' is appropriate — that is, no shorts or t-shirts. Men don’t have to wear ties, however. Avoid profanity in public — it is very much frowned upon. Punctuality is appreciated, even if the temptation exists to observe a more relaxed 'island time'.
Drinking Laws — The legal drinking age is 18. Alcohol is only sold at liquor stores and not in grocery stores, everyday except Sundays. It is legal to have an open container on the beach. Do not carry open containers of alcohol in your car or any public area that isn’t zoned for alcohol consumption. Don’t even think about driving while intoxicated.
Banks - Although Grand Cayman now has more than 200 licensed banks, only a handful are full-service retail banks providing customer banking services as visitors know it. These include Scotiabank, Butterfield, Royal Bank of Canada, Cayman National Bank, First Caribbean International. Regular banking hours are 9: 00 a.m. until 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and until 4:30 p.m. on Friday.
Currency - The Cayman Islands has its own currency, first issued in 1972, whose basic unit is the dollar, issued in notes with denominations of CI$100, 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1 and coins valued at 25 cents, 10, 5 and 1 cent. The CI dollar has a fixed exchange rate with the US dollar of CI$1.00 equals US$1.25 or the US dollar equals CI$0.80.
There is no need for visitors to exchange their US dollars into local currency. The US dollar is accepted throughout the islands at a rate of CI$0.80 cents. Banks do not give a better rate of exchange. Please CLICK HERE for an exchange rate chart.
Major credit cards and travelers checks are widely accepted. Canadian dollars, Euros and Pounds Sterling can be exchanged for CI dollars at local banks.
In addition, Automatic Teller Machines accepting VISA and MasterCard are located at numerous banks in George Town and at Owen Roberts International Airport as well as a few other locations such as grocery stores.
Many stores and operations within the Cayman Islands will quote products in Cayman Island Dollars (CI$) and American Dollars (US$). Both currencies are accepted anywhere, however change will generally be given in Cayman currency.
Water — The water in the Cayman Islands is safe to drink. Two desalination plants on Grand Cayman supply good-quality purified tap water. Sunset House also relies on rainwater collected in cisterns, to water the lawns, plants and fill the pool. The toilets are supplied by the well here at Sunset House. Please help us in trying to conserve water.
Electricity — Electricity in the Cayman Islands is 110-volt AC, so adapters or transformers are not required for U.S. and Canadian appliances. You will need to bring adapters and transformers if you’re traveling with appliances from other parts of the world. Please turn off your television, lights and air conditioning when not in use to help us conserve power.
Taxes — A government tourist tax of 13% is included to your hotel bill. There is no tax on goods and services.