Buying local products and services is always important, but even more so during an economic downturn.
To shop locally, rather than flying off on a shopping trip to Miami, Tampa or New York, supports the local economy and helps create and secure jobs in Cayman. It keeps established companies open and kick-starts new businesses.
Keeping the money circulating in the local economy not only ensures competition, but that in the medium and long term prices can come down. It also means a wider range of products and services can be offered by local businesses and retailers.
The variety of products available in Cayman has increased steadily over the years. Events like the Chamber of Commerce’s Business Expo give an exhaustive overview of the true array of what is on offer at a reasonable price.
No longer is it difficult to find certain items on sale in the Cayman Islands, as local retailers go to some length to bring the products that are desired in Cayman to the islands.
Diana Quin from Cayman rug retailer Rugs Oriental explains that “at Rugs Oriental we have done the initial work by personally visiting the countries where the rugs are made and by going through piles of rugs, selecting the ones which we think will look beautiful in Cayman.”
As a result customers can select from a diverse range of products for their home.
“We choose a real cross section from old to new and from traditional patterns to contemporary pieces in all sizes,” says Ms Quin.
Buying locally also offers benefits in the level of service customers can enjoy.
“We have a friendly and knowledgeable staff who have a genuine interest in oriental rugs and who enjoy helping customers in their quest to find the perfect rug for their home,” she says.
If requested this will even include visiting the customer’s home to suggest appropriate rugs.
Rather than buying online and having to deal with transport and customs issues, Rugs Oriental can also help selecting pieces that are not on island.
“We have great contacts in the rug making centres, where we can get photographs of pieces, if they are not available in the shop,” Ms Quin says.
“And we can have rugs custom made.”
Other benefits of shopping locally are that warranties and guarantees on products can be dealt with in person and on island. Products can be repaired or replaced straight away without delay.
Some retailers like Rugs Oriental also let their customers test their products before purchasing.
“We give our customers the unique opportunity to take the rugs and try them in their own home prior to purchase, something not easily done if purchasing off island,” explains Ms Quin.
Many local retailers like Kirk Freeport also offers lower prices than can be found in other jurisdictions.
Too, all products available from Kirk Freeport are covered by the manufacturer’s international warranty where applicable.
Kirk Freeport offers items for the home, watches, jewellery, crystal, china, beauty products and leather.
There is also a gift registry and gift cards are available.
Foster’s Food Fair offers local shoppers a variety of services, including a pharmacy at the Airport Centre and the Strand; Western Union money transfer; gift certificates, automatic teller machines, product demonstrations, fruit baskets, catering and more.
There are five Foster’s Food Fair locations on Grand Cayman – the Republix Plaza in West Bay, The Strand on Seven Mile Beach, the Airport Center, Countryside Shopping Village in Savannah and at Morritt’s Shopping Centre in East End.
As with most retailers in the Cayman Islands, the secret to their success is service and it’s no different at Tony’s Toys.
The car boutique has been doing business in the Cayman Islands for more than 10 years and has a well earned reputation of honesty and excellence.
Tony’s Toys is the sole provider for several internationally known specialty parts and performance manufacturers including Clutch Masters, Castrol, Redline, NGK, Tanabe and Sunoco. The boutique is also affiliated with several local and international organisations.
Tony’s offers motor service repairs, wholesale, parts and accessories.
Another popular car dealer in the Cayman Islands is Prestige Motors Ltd., which has been the sole Hyundai Distributor in the Cayman Islands since 1983.
Prestige offers a full service and parts department and honours Hyundai warranties.
The full line of Prestige offerings can be seen on the lot and in the showroom. Prestige also has rental car companies.
Another perk of buying local is same day or next day delivery of purchased products.
Cayman Doors Ltd. is one such company. It offers sales, service and installation of aluminium frames and doors, same day service insurance company approved for homes and businesses.
Cayman Doors also offers replacement at home or workplace of the manufacturer’s original insulated glass, bath and shower enclosures, clear glass and obscure place glass replacement, window replacement, store fronts, door repairs, garage doors, custom mirror installations, shower doors and offers very competitive prices.
The reasons to shop locally overwhelm just about any need to travel overseas to make purchases, which then requires you to go through the hassle of shipping, clearing Customs and paying duties.