Whilst the official currency of the Cayman Islands is the Cayman Islands dollar (CI$ or KYD), US dollars are also accepted Island wide. The CI dollar has a fixed exchange rate with the US dollar of .80 (US$1.00 is equal to CI$0.80). Although both currencies are used locally, change is always given in Cayman Islands dollars.
Opening an Account:
Opening an account in Cayman is a relatively easy process, but keep in mind when first moving to the Island that it can take up to a couple of weeks for the account to become operational, so make sure you have access to enough funds to keep you going on arrival.
See below list of banks:
- Butterfield Bank (Cayman) Limited
- Cayman National Bank Ltd
- CIBC First Caribbean International Bank (Cayman) Limited
- Fidelity Bank (Cayman) Ltd.
- RBC Royal Bank
- Scotiabank & Trust (Cayman) Ltd.
To open an account you will be required to provide a letter from your employer on island, proof of your identity (current passport or driving license), and a letter of reference from your home bank is also often requested.
Retail Banks offer accounts for the Cayman Islands Dollar, US Dollar, Canadian Dollar, British Pound and Euro.
Credit/Debit Cards and ATM Machines
Credit/Debit Cards: On opening your Cayman account you will be issued with a Debit Card. You can then apply for a Credit Card with your bank. It is quite common for ex-pats to be requested to pay a deposit before the bank will approve your application for a Credit Card. Debit Cards are available in both US and CI dollars, whilst Credit Cards are available in US dollars only.
ATM Machines: There are many ATM machines available on island. These are commonly situated outside the banks, in local supermarkets and gas stations for your convenience. Most ATMs are accessible 24 hours a day and operate on the CIRRUS card system.
Banks in Cayman are open for business from Monday-Friday, 9am through 4pm. However, some branches have extended their weekly business hours through 6pm and are open Saturday mornings until mid-day. Check when opening your account what branches offer “after hours” services.
All banks on Island are closed on public holidays and Sundays.
It is quite common for new residents to apply for car loans and mortgage loans when they arrive on Island. Banks will generally require a letter from your employer confirming various details before approving a loan.