Thursday 26 November, 2020

Travel Cayman has received 750 applications in the past week

Travel Cayman, the cross-ministerial project launched in October to manage the gradual border reopening of the Cayman Islands, has received a significant number of inbound travel requests. Given the heightened risks of inbound travel during the pandemic, government has had to restrict the number of arrivals to the Cayman Islands-- which means that some travellers will have to be turned away.

The demand for inbound travel is high. Since the Travel Cayman site launched on October 19, 2020, over 750 travel requests have been received and more than 287 travel approvals have been issued as of Saturday October 24, 2020. Statistics from Saturday October 24, 2020 indicate that more than 130 calls were handled on that day alone.

Travel Cayman consists of teams from a number of government agencies working in collaboration. To date, over 140 staff from core government, Statutory Authorities and Government owned companies have been redeployed to work with Travel Cayman, and are assisting with various aspects of the travel management, travel support, health screening and monitoring and compliance requirements.

As the volume of travellers increases over time, the number of staff assigned to support the project is increasing in tandem. In addition, a new travel support team staffed through collaboration with the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman has been incorporated to provide support to travellers who have queries or need non-emergency assistance while in quarantine.

Travel Cayman has now launched its new online portal which is enhancing the travel application process and provides a more streamlined experience for applicants.  The online gateway collects information from prospective travellers and manages the travel application through a multi-agency vetting process.

Call waiting times have already been reduced. The waiting time averaged 48 seconds and the maximum waiting time was 11 mins 20 seconds. The average length of time for  the calls was around 4 mins, and the maximum call time was 28 minutes and 34 seconds.

Deputy Governor, Franz Manderson Chairs the Programme Board which has overseen the development and implementation of the new Travel Cayman management system and The Travel Cayman Portal. “The new Travel Cayman site is expected to greatly improve the traveller experience by reducing the need to call or email the Travel Cayman team for information," Mr Manderson explained.

“The site manages the applications based on arrival dates and quarantine requirements, thereby removing the need for manual sorting and responding to each query, which streamlines and speeds up the application process. Since launching the site the Travel Cayman call lines have been cleared and feedback on the portal has been positive,” he said.

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