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(CMR) Travelers are concerned about the practicality of obtaining a PCR test 72-hours before traveling in and out of the Cayman Islands. Many countries are now requiring a negative test for international travelers.
Multiple travelers have contacted CMR with their concerns inquiring how they will be able to get the test results in “such a short space of time”. One traveler noted that in Cayman the Health Services Authority's COVID-19 lab is closed on the weekends and with the upcoming public holiday it would be impossible to meet the 72-hour deadline.
However, HSA's management has informed CMR that they are adequately prepared for such situations and the flu hotline stands ready to assist.
The situation becomes more challenging when people are traveling into the Cayman Islands from other jurisdictions. They have also expressed concerns that they will be unable to obtain tests quickly in those countries.
One writer from Jamaica shared that “as far as I know .. Jamaica is overwhelmed and take longer than 72hrs to get the test back to people.” The person further shared that travelers to Canada are facing a similar predicament but that Westjet Airlines had reached an agreement with the Canadian government to allow passengers traveling from Jamaica to Toronto to enter without the PCR test.
“So I am not sure what will happen for the flights operating from 20JAN onwards from KIN-GCM… They will either go empty because no one will be able to get a PCR in time to fly or maybe CI GOV will relax the rule for people from Jamaica.”
The government has just implemented the rules starting January 14 and there have been no discussions about making any exceptions. Most jurisdictions are requiring a negative PCR test in advance of travel in order to slow down the spread of the new variants of the coronavirus.
Travelers will have to plan ahead carefully now before traveling to the USA, Canada and UK – all of whom require a negative PCR test before boarding.