Located in the western part of the Caribbean Sea, the Cayman Islands are a British Overseas Territory comprised of three islands--the Little Cayman, the Cayman Brac and Grand Cayman Island. Considered part of the geographic Greater Antilles and the Western Caribbean Zone, the Cayman Islands is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world and a major global offshore financial center.
Interestingly, the Cayman Islands are home to more businesses than people, with approximately 60,000 residents versus over 100,000 registered businesses. Most Caymanians live on the Grand Cayman Island but businesses are scattered throughout the three islands.
George Town, the capital of the Cayman Islands, can be found on Grand Cayman's southwest coast. Nearly 90 percent of George Town and other city residents speak English, followed by Spanish, Filipino and other, unspecified languages.
Cayman Island Currency
The Cayman Islands dollar is directly tied to the U.S. dollar; therefore, exchange rates do not fluctuate. The exchange rate is $1.20 USD = $1 KYD. Although US money is accepted everywhere, students won't receive US money back as change.
Environmentally Conscious Lifestyles
Living "green" is a way of life for Caymanians. In fact, the islands leads the Caribbean region in sales of electric cars. Students can visit Governors Square near West Bay Road and see solar-powered charging stations for devices and cars running on solar energy. Since the Cayman Islands experience over 300 days of partial to full sunshine every year, solar energy equipment is rapidly being incorporated into most current construction projects.
A tropical marine climate makes for rainy, warm summers (May-October) and dry, hot winters (November-April). Between June and November, the Atlantic hurricane season swings into action, occasionally producing tropical cyclones or damaging hurricanes.
Medical insurance must be purchased through a private health insurance agency or obtained through an employer. The Cayman Islands government does not offer free health insurance based on economic needs. In 2003, the Islands became the first country to mandate all residents purchase and maintain health insurance. When purchasing health insurance, students will need to bring documents containing information about their medical history and any current medications or health conditions.
Capital: George Town
Official Languages: English
Government: British Overseas Territory
Gross Domestic Product: $3.268 billion
Currency: Cayman Islands dollar (KYD)
Time zone: (UTC-5)