Getting Your Licence
Cayman's teens can begin the process of getting their driving licence at age 17. The first step is to sit the theory exam - a 40-minute test, made up of 40 questions. Teens will need to make an appointment by heading into one of the Department of Vehicle and Drivers' Licensing (DVDL) offices or over the phone at (345) 945 8344. Candidates should prepare by studying the official road code booklet, available in PDF format online, or by reading Drive Safely in Cayman by Graham Walker. This helpful tool can be purchased directly from Graham (345) 926 2501 for CI$15 or is available for CI$18 at most book stores.
After passing the theory test, a learner’s licence is issued; it is valid for six months and allows you to drive a vehicle while accompanied by a holder of a full Cayman licence. During this time, an ‘L’ plate must be visible on the front and back of the car. Learners need to wait four weeks before taking the practical test, and are encouraged to take driving lessons during this period. For driving lessons call Tony Martin on (345) 923 7218. Once the learner has passed the practical driving examination, they will receive a full, unrestricted driver’s licence.
Cost of Getting Your Licence:
- Theory Test - CI$25
- Learner's Licence - CI$60
- Practical Test - CI$50
- Full 3 Year Licence - CI$75
- Full 5 Year Licence - CI$125
Insuring a Young Driver
All drivers in the Cayman Islands must be insured on the vehicle(s) they drive. This includes learner drivers, for whom most insurance companies have specific policies. Note, however, that insurance rates for young, inexperienced drivers can be very high. Certain vehicles such as those with engine sizes greater than two litres, convertibles or modified vehicles attract a higher premium, as do newer, higher value vehicles.
Buying a Used Car
For cheaper, second-hand vehicles, www.ecaytrade.com is a good place to look – but be aware that purchasing a car from a private individual can be risky. Consider getting a mechanic to check the car over for you prior to purchase. Transferring vehicle ownership is very straightforward, as long as you deal with the official owner of the vehicle or go through a reputable car dealer. Local car rental companies also occasionally have pre-owned fleet sales.
The Rules of the Road
It is important that a new driver observes these four basic safety rules to keep themselves, their passengers, fellow drivers and pedestrians safe. Please review this section with them.
- Never drink and drive. It is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol level over 0.07%. DUI penalties include CI$1000+ fines, imprisonment for 6-12 months and loss of your licence. Drinking and driving can also result in your death or the death of others.
- Have a valid driving licence and insurance. It is illegal to drive without a valid licence or in an uninsured vehicle.
- Slow down. Drivers caught speeding by the police face a standard fine of $20 for every mile over the speed limit. If your fine exceeds $500, it is mandatory for you to make a court appearance.
- Don't use a mobile phone while driving. It is illegal in Cayman and may result in an accident, a fine or loss of your licence.
If a driver loses their right to drive, they will be required to surrender their licence. In some cases, they may even be required to take out a learner’s licence and retake their driving examination.
The Department of Vehicle & Drivers' Licensing DVDL
- 990 Crewe Road, Red Bay, Tel: (345) 945 8344, Open: Monday-Friday, 8.30am-4pm
- Jacques Scott Marketplace, West Bay, Tel: (345) 949 7231, Open: Tuesday-Friday, 10am-6pm, Saturday 9am-4pm
- Breakers, Frank Sound, Tel: (345) 244 5528, Open: Tuesday-Friday, 10am-6pm, Saturday 9am-4pm
- District Administration Building, Dennis Rd Tel: (345) 948 2222, Open: Monday-Friday, 8.30am-4pm
- Little Cayman District Office, Open: (Normally) Every other Thursday, 9am-2.30pm.