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Published 24th July 2009, 4:47pm

The Governor's Office on behalf of the Consular Directorate of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Austrian, Barbadian, Brazilian, Canadian, Filipino, German, Honduran, Indian, Jamaican, Spanish, Swiss and United States Honorary Consuls of the Cayman Islands wishes to remind all nationals to ensure that their travel documents are in order.

Copies should be made of key documents, including passports, birth certificates, work permits and drivers' licenses, and stored in a safe place, separate from the originals. The original documents should be kept with you in waterproof bags or containers during any emergency situation, particularly in the event of an approaching hurricane or tropical storm.

For those people who may wish to travel to the US either before, or immediately after a hurricane, it is essential that your documents are in order. It is extremely unlikely that anyone without appropriate documentation will be allowed to enter the United States in any circumstances. Those who do plan to travel to the US should also be aware that the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP) only operates for commercial flights and they should therefore also obtain a US visa if travelling on charter or private flights. Those nationals looking to travel under the VWP should also apply online for Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA).

British passport holders should note that it may take a few weeks to process their application. Those people with passports expiring in the next four months should not send them away for renewal unless they have a second passport that could be used in the event of an emergency. US Immigration will accept a machine-readable British passport with at least one month's validity. British passport holders should note that they are able to renew their passports at a Passport Office in the UK providing the holder is in the UK at the time. Details of this service can be found at www.passport.gov.uk. Nationals of other countries should also give consideration to applying for a new passport if you intend to visit your home country over the summer. Here is the list of consular agents in the Cayman Islands and their contact details.

The Governor's Office would like to remind all other foreign nationals in the Cayman Islands that the advice above also applies to them. If you have not already done so, you should consider registering with your nearest Consular mission. Further details can be found on your own government web pages.