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The Cayman Islands is a tri-island state. The islands are called Grand Cayman, Little Cayman and Cayman Brac. The islands are located South of Cuba and are a British Overseas Territory.
As a general rule, the pros of living in Cayman Islands are easy access to international cities, beautiful beaches and the Cayman Kind experience. Alternatively, the cons of living on the island are the threat of natural disasters, poor infrastructure and the high cost of living.
Read on for further details and explanations of all the pros and cons of living on Cayman Islands. Contributions to the completion of the article were made by expats who lived on the island in excess of 3 years.
Pros of Living In Cayman Islands
Easy Access To International Cities
It is extremely easy to travel from the Florida to the Cayman Islands. It takes approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes from Miami.
There are direct and non-stop flight opportunities from several international ports such as Denver, Atlanta, Toronto and London.
There is also a pre clearance service that is offered by Cayman Airways that allows US citizens to be pre-screened at Miami before boarding the flight.
This process allows visitors to bypass long immigration lines on arrival to Cayman.
Cayman has fantastic warm and sunny weather which means that one can have many beach days.
Some of the well-loved beaches on the island are Rum Point, Seven Mile, West Bay, Cayman Kai and Governor’s beach. Activities that you can do on the beaches include snorkeling, diving and kayaking.
One of the most popular night attractions is Bioluminescent Bay tour which occurs at night. This service is provided by George’s Watersports and they will furnish you with swim gloves, shoes and a wet suit to prevent you from being stung by jelly fish. Only two other Caribbean islands have bioluminescent bay being Jamaica and Puerto Rico.
Experience Cayman Kind
Cayman Kind is the natural warmth and hospitality of the island. Caymanians are very welcoming to everyone and locals enjoy greeting visitors to the island with a smile. Locals go out of their way to ensure that visitors are respected and can enjoy a peaceful stay on the island.
Furthermore, the island is multinational and hence multi-cultural. There are about 135 different nationalities of the world that are represented on the island.
This truly makes the island a melting pot. Cayman Island is also very family friendly. Thus there are activities that are kid friendly. There are various sporting activities as well as camps organized in the summer.
In Cayman, everyone is made to feel like a part of the culture and it is amazing that despite differences everyone lives together in harmony. This is truly the nature and essence of Cayman Kind.
The official currency of the islands is the Cayman dollar (CI$) which replaced the Jamaican dollar in 1972. One Cayman dollar is USD$1.20 and Canadian $1.60 The Cayman dollar is managed by its central bank called Cayman Islands Monetary Authority.
There Is No Personal Income Tax
One of the beautiful things about living in Cayman is that there are no income taxes. Whatever you earn, you take it home.
This gives you the employee better opportunities to manage what you earn. Furthermore, there are no corporate tax, capital gains, payroll or any other taxes.
Living on a small island means that nothing is ever very far away. There are no major traffic jams and long hours of commute to get from one place to another.
This greatly improves one’s quality of life. Even if you live outside of the city, you will still have a comfortable drive to work daily.
Excellent Quality of Life
The Cayman Islands can offer an individual a very good lifestyle. Most individuals begin work from 8am in the morning and end at around 4 or 4 30 pm in the afternoon.
With the short commute, one can spend time with family on afternoons or go to the beach, dive or snorkel everyday of the week if you will like to. This is definitely a positive and a more relaxing quality of life.
Cons of Living in Cayman Islands
The Threat of Natural Disasters
Cayman is located in the hurricane belt and is therefore susceptible to storms. The last major hurricane to hit the island was hurricane Ivan which devastated the island in 2004.
This hurricane also caused significant damage to housing, live stock and property in the Caribbean island of Grenada.
The Government however have stringent building codes to ensure that all buildings are greater able to withstand hurricane force winds.
And if you are interested in information on the pros and cons of living in Grenada, feel free to click on the link below to read another article on this blog.
See Also: What Are The Pros And Cons of Living In Grenada
High Cost of Living
Prices of things on the island are expensive because almost everything is imported. Duties on imported items are levied at about 22 to 27% taxes. If you want to live near the beach or in the city, you need to be prepared to pay a premium.
In addition, tourism and financial services have been the main revenue drivers on the island. Therefore, agriculture was not given much focus over the years.
The government and Ministry of Agriculture is putting more emphasis on the sector so hopefully this should make certain crops previously imported to be available at a lower cost.
The roads in Cayman are not the best. There are pot holes in the road which makes driving difficult.
In addition, there are many blind spots on the road based on how the roads are designed. Care must be taken when driving especially when driving from minor roads into major roads.
Lack of Variety
There are a number of popular restaurants such as Veranda, Bacaro and Anchor & Den on the island.
Supermarkets such as Kirk Market carries a wide selection of international, organic, gluten free and special dietary foods and carries similar brands as large international chains such as Waitrose. However, the variety is still limited and the lifestyle can become very monotonous.
With a melting pot of several nationalities on the island, there isn’t a wide selection of different authentic restaurants such as Indian, Chinese and Korean.
Many of the dishes are though Chinese as an example is Americanized. Despite this if you have a great group of friends maybe it can help ease the monotony of living on the island.
Limited Access To Specialized Items
While there are more specialized services available when compared to other Caribbean island, access to specialty items is quite limited.
There are no large retail chains such as Target and Walmart. There are retail stores such as Kirk Home, AI Thompson, Cost U Less and Buy Smart that are similar.
However these stores do not offer the wide range as you will find in the USA. In addition, if you are looking for specialty items such as you are above average height you will find it hard to find suitable clothes on the island.
Car parts as well are a major issue and at times these need to be ordered from abroad. Stories of individuals having to wait for months to receive a car replacement part is not uncommon.
There May Be A Loss of Privacy
While there is a great sense of community which can be helpful, the drawback to this is that there is a loss of privacy.
Though there is a large expat community, everyone gets to know everyone overtime and this can result in a loss of privacy. At times you may want to walk down the road for a little peace and serenity and someone who you know will call you out for a chat.
On a whole, the pros of living in the Cayman Islands are having a strong currency, no personal income tax and the beautiful Cayman Kind Experience. On the other hand, the cons of living on the island are the loss of privacy, limited access to specialized items and lack of variety.
If you are contemplating traveling to the Cayman Islands or the rest of the Caribbean, cruising is an affordable option to consider. I have recently completed an informative course by cruise specialist, Emma Cruises which you should check out titled How To Cruise For Less.
This course provides detail tips and techniques on how to save money while cruising onboard, onshore as well as the importance of insurance. So if you if you are considering a cruise for your next Caribbean vacation, check out How To Cruise For Less.
Need More Information?
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