Your vehicle will need to be inspected and licensed every year by the DVDL (unless the car is brand new and then it can be licensed for three years). Avoid doing this on rainy days (they will not inspect the cars if it is raining) or at the beginning and end of the month as they get very busy. You can have your car inspected and its registration renewed for up to 30 days before the expiry date.
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You can also renew your vehicle and driving licence online if you have an ESID number (e-services number unique to you), which you must obtain from the DVLD office. Once they have you set up with one, you can do everything online in a matter of minutes. No more waiting in line! You will still have to get your car inspected, but that process is usually quite quick and once they confirm your car has passed, the information will be recorded in their computer system.
COVID-19: Temporary Certificate of Exemption
In response to the government-issued shelter-in-place orders, an amendment to the Traffic Law has been issued which enables vehicle owners with expired licenses to renew them online without an up-to-date inspection certificate.
The Temporary Certificate of Exemption (TCE) became effective on 30th April 2020 and allows a temporary six-month renewal period for vehicles with an inspection certificate that has expired from 1st Feb 2020-30th April 2020 or will expire between 1st May 2020-30th June 2020.
This exemption will automatically apply for vehicles in the two categories specified above. For vehicle owners that don’t fall within the two exemption categories, email the DVDL Helpdesk for further advice on procedure: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Renewal for the vehicle’s license can now be completed online through the DVDL website. Print out the online transaction receipt and keep it in your vehicle.
According to the Traffic Law, it is the vehicle owner/driver’s responsibility to ensure the vehicle is always roadworthy.
To do so, please check the following areas:
- Brakes, horns, all lights, windscreen wipers (front and back), windscreens (front and back), indicators, battery, steering are all working properly
- Muffler/Silencer – must be in leak-proof condition and sound mechanical order
- Tyres (including the spare) must have a tread depth of 1mm around the wheel circumference and across 75% of its breadth. Tyres on the same axle must be of similar design and there can be no defective tyres.
You must still have a valid Certificate of Insurance which satisfies the requirements of The Motor Vehicle Insurance Law.
The law does not require you to have a Cayman licence to register a car in your name, but if you are registering it in the name of a company, you must have a certificate of good standing from the Registrar of Companies, located on the ground floor of the Government Administration Building. The minimum cost for one year’s inspection and licensing for a regular four-seater car is CI$215 (CI$180 registration, CI$35 inspection). An SUV that exceeds 2500cc costs CI$235. A Hummer costs between CI$535 and CI$1,035 per year. Disabled vehicles have no annual licensing fee unless you own two, in which case you must pay standard fees for the second vehicle. Scooters, trucks and taxis have different prices for both inspection and licensing. Vehicle inspections are offered at the Crewe Road and Breakers locations, but not at the West Bay location. You can also have your vehicle inspected at various automotive repair shops and many people will combine an annual car service with the car inspection process. The garage will issue you with a Certificate of Roadworthiness, which you then take to the Vehicle & Licensing Department when you go to renew the licence on your car.
Depending on the age of the vehicle, it can be inspected for any period up to a maximum of 62 months and licensed for one, three or five years. For five years, the vehicle must be brand new and not previously licensed in any country. Vehicles licensed for three years must not be older than ten years from the date of manufacture. If your vehicle is new to the Island you will also have to purchase licence plates at CI$75 per set. Personalised plates can also be purchased for CI$400 per set (replacements cost $30). With the new Electronic licence plates, you are required to place the coupon at the top of the windshield, in the centre, directly below the place the rear-view mirror is placed. This makes it easily accessible for scanning by law enforcement. However, if you still have old plates, place the coupon within six inches of the edge on the driver side, with the time period facing outside of the car.
New Electronic Vehicle Registration System
There are plans in place to roll out a modern and sophisticated Electronic Vehicle Registration system
In time, all vehicles will be fitted with specialised licence plates and registration coupons, both tagged with mini chips, which are capable of communicating with roadside monitors and portable devices. The monitors will track every passing vehicle, recording the expiry date of each registration coupon and car insurance contract and issuing tickets automatically when appropriate. The system could also act to monitor traffic patterns, as well as locate offenders. The new licence plates are on a white background with black numerals for private cars, green for rentals, red for other hire vehicles (such as taxis and tour buses) and blue for disabled. The process to replace all old or temporary plates started in February 2018 and is expected to take three years.
Locations: The Department of Vehicle & Drivers’ Licensing (DVDL)
The DVDL is authorised to inspect and test vehicles, register motor vehicles and maintain the register, issue licences in respect of motor vehicles and drivers, and conduct driving tests.
The Department of Vehicle & Drivers’ Licensing (DVDL) has three locations in Grand Cayman
- 990 Crewe Road, Red Bay, Tel: (345) 945 8344, Email: email@example.com or Web: www.dvdl.gov.ky. Open: Monday-Friday 8.30am-4pm
- 9 Reverend Blackman Road, West Bay (Across from the West Bay Police Station) Tel: (345) 949 7231, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Web: www.dvdl.gov.ky. Open: Tuesday-Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 9am-4pm
- Breakers, Frank Sound (across Sea View Road from the South Coast Bar and Grill) Tel: (345) 244 5528, Email: email@example.com or Web: www.dvdl.gov.ky. Open: Tuesday-Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 9am-4pm
Without a shadow of a doubt the busiest DVDL office in Grand Cayman is the one in Red Bay which is very near the Hurleys roundabout. Expect a two hour wait when you go to get anything done. Also worth noting is that the West Bay location does not have a car inspection bay so you must take your car to either Red Bay or Breakers to be inspected. You can then take the paperwork to West Bay to be processed.
The Department of Vehicle & Drivers’ Licensing (DVDL) in Cayman Brac and Little Cayman:
- Cayman Brac District Administration Building. Tel: (345) 948 2222. Open: Monday-Friday 8.30am-4pm
- Little Cayman District Administration Building, Tel: (345) 948 1051. Open: Every other Thursday 9am-2.30pm
For more information visit their website.