Severity: Critical Alert
Exit/Entry: Cayman Islands continues to lift internal COVID-19 restrictions as of July 20. Borders remain closed through the end of August.
- Alert Begins: 20 Jul 2020 10:34 AM UTC
- Alert Expires: 17 Aug 2020 11:59 PM UTC
- Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
- Location(s): Territorywide (map)
- Time Frame: Indefinite
- Impact: Transport and business disruptions
Authorities in the Cayman Islands are continuing to ease internal restrictions introduced to combat the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), with revised measures having taken effect July 19. Across all the islands, social distancing measures that ensure people keep 6 feet (2 meters) apart remain mandatory for all businesses, establishments, and individuals in public areas, and all persons are required to use a protective facemask in public. While restrictions have been almost completely eased in Little Cayman, some measures continue to be enforced on Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac as follows:
- Public gatherings of no more than 50 people (up from 25) will be permitted; religious and festive events are now permitted under these requirements.
- Travel between the islands can now be done without a COVID-19 test and for leisure purposes, provided travelers have been in the Cayman Islands for more than 14 days.
- Commercial boats can carry up to 50 percent of their licensed capacity, not exceeding 50 people.
- Scuba and snorkel rentals are prohibited.
International travel restrictions are still in place. All international commercial passenger flights remain suspended at Owen Roberts International Airport (GCM) and Charles Kirkconnell International Airport (CYB) until at least the end of August. Officials have also banned cruises and private vessels from entering the Cayman Islands until the end of August. Evacuation and cargo flights, air couriers, air ambulance services, and cargo ships continue to operate. Fishing vessels will not be allowed into the Cayman Islands, and the crews of fishing vessels that had departed before officials imposed the current restrictions will need to quarantine on-board their vessels for 14 days upon their return. All individuals arriving on the islands will be subject to health screenings and quarantine protocols.
Business and travel disruptions are likely to persist even with the easing of some restrictions. All restrictions are subject to amendment at short notice.
Background and Analysis
Several governments have implemented recovery plans to lift restrictive measures introduced in response to the outbreak of COVID-19, which was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) March 11. Officials in the Cayman Islands began gradually relaxing internal restrictions May 4 to allow some economic recovery. Should the number of COVID-19 cases significantly increase, officials may reapply the relaxed restrictions. Likewise, a continued low number of cases may result in further relaxation of restrictions.
Strictly heed the instructions of authorities. Confirm appointments and travel arrangments. Remain courteous and cooperative if approached and questioned by law enforcement officers.
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.