Travelling to the Cayman Islands is an adventure in itself, but many times we see our guests wanting to experience more and get the most out of their vacation time. We’ve put together our top 15 most frequently asked questions, in no particular order, from our visitors over the years:
- Do we need to rent a car?
Most of the time, the answer is yes! Opting for a rental car is an easy process and we recommend them for most of our guests. Having the option to drive to the grocery store or for a delicious meal at one of the island’s many restaurants is a handy and cost-effective way to get around the island. Rental companies are located 2 minutes walk from the airport exit and reservations are recommended, especially for large groups. The Cayman Islands Government requires all international drivers to get a Temporary Driver’s Permit (approx., US$20) which can be issued at the rental location upon proof of a valid license from your home country. Roads are safe, easy to navigate and you can’t get lost on an Island!
Many companies will also deliver a car to your villa should you decide to rent a vehicle halfway thru your vacation for a fee, which is a great alternative if you want to do some additional exploring.
- Is Wi-Fi available?
All our villas are fitted with high-speed Wi-Fi, so you can call home, Facetime your friends or browse the web at any time of the day. Also, most cafes around the island have free Wi-Fi, so do stop in for a cold drink to check your message or upload photos to Instagram with the hashtag #luxurycaymanvillas.
- How can I call home?
The marjority of our villas include Magic Jack international calling system for making free calls to the US, Apple iPads and free Wi-Fi. Using What’s App, Facetime or Skype is easy from your own personal device once you are connected to your villa’s Wi-Fi.
- Where and when can I get groceries and alcohol?
For a small island, Grand Cayman surprisingly has quite a few supermarkets including Fosters (5 locations), Kirks and Hurley’s. Supermarkets and liquor stores are open 6 days a week from 7am to 10pm or 11pm, and reduced opening times on public holidays. They are all closed on Sundays, so we recommend pre-ordering your groceries thru our Concierge should you arrive on a weekend or just want the ultimate convenience. Allow 72 hours notice for grocery delivery. Party platters and gourmet salads can also be arranged through Kirk Market for delivery.
- When planning excursions, do you have any advice?
Booking excursions on the island is easy and there are a number of different operators available. However, be careful not to overload your day by squeezing in too many activities. For example, booking an excursion to Stingray City should not be done on the same day as exploring George Town; or spending the day at Rum Point should not be done on the same as visiting the Turtle Farm and Cracked Conch (long distance between them). Ask our Concierge for more tips and tricks, so you can get the very best out of your vacation including the port schedule to plan around busy cruise ships.
- What type of electricity and plugs are used in the villas?
The Cayman Islands uses the same plugs as the United States with 110 volts and two pinned plugs. No converters needed and we provide hairdryers in all our bathrooms.
- Are we able to buy items like sunscreen or sandals if we forget to bring them?
Grand Cayman has many shops that sell retail items, toiletries, beach and sportswear, etc… so you should never be without your essentials. If you have a brand preference, we do recommend bringing your own items from home as there can be a limited number of options available on the island. Sunscreen is a must and much more affordable in North America.
- What type of currency is used?
Most restaurants, shops and banks take both US dollars and CI dollars. The exchange rate is approximately US$1 to CI$0.80 and most change will be in CI dollars. Visa and Mastercard are taken across the island, with American Express only being accepted at a few on-island locations. Bank ATM’s are commonplace and reliable.
- What language is spoken?
English is the national language of the Cayman Islands and is spoken everywhere. The island is a cultural melting pot with 143 nationalities represented!
- Is the Cayman Islands safe?
The Cayman Islands is known as one of the safest places in the world. Just like any other place, we urge you to keep the doors locked at night and when you head out for a day of fun. Some of our villas are equipped with an alarm system and automatic front door lock, for ease and safety. Also, keep valuables in a safe place should you want to go for a strong along the beach after a day in the sun. But you won’t see armed guards, bars on windows, begging in the streets and you are not a target because of wearing nice jewelry or driving a rental car! Cayman is a very safe island.
- Will my U.S. cell phone work in Grand Cayman?
Most phones do work but in order to not be surprised with a large roaming bill after your trip; we recommend that you check with your carrier before you leave for your trip. Ask about the international roaming plans and what coverages are offered in Grand Cayman.
- Can we have food delivered?
Yes, we encourage you to have food delivered to your villa while you eat by the pool or on the outside terrace. The villa book lists a food delivery service but if the farther away from George Town, the earlier in the day you need to order so it arrives on time. Just be sure to give the delivery service the correct address to your villa.
- Are taxis readily available for use?
Taxis are available across the island, both from the local restaurants and pick-up from your villa. Fares can sometimes be quite pricey if you are looking to travel more than 10-15 minutes. It might be worth pre-booking a taxi service for the week (negotiated rate) or renting a car/ van if you want to explore restaurants and sites across the island. Grand Cayman does not have Uber or Lyft.
- Is there a dress code for restaurants and night spots?
Shirts and sandals are required at most food serving locations, unless you are on the beach. We recommend island casual wear for dinners out and no sandals/shorts at the nightclubs (dress code enforced).
- When and what times are most stores open?
Most banks are open from 9am to 4:30pm, some with Saturday opening hours. Generally, stores open from 9/10am to 6pm, Monday thru Saturday, with almost all stores closed on Sundays. Supermarkets are open from 7am to 10/11pm. Restaurants serving brunch or dinner options are usually open on Sundays, but closed Mondays, so be sure to call in advance and make a reservation.