FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Peru is a country with more than 5 thousand years of cultural history. Although the Incan Empire is the most commonly known of Peru’s great past, ancient civilizations such as the Caral, Mochica, Chavín, Nasca, Paracas, and Kuélap, all called Peru home as well.
Peru is one of the most diverse nations on the planet, with 84 of the 117 life zones. You can go from the desert, to imposing mountains, to a colorful and exuberant jungle in an instant.
Our country is also renowned for the cuisine full of aromas, flavors, and colors – cataloging it as one of the best in the world.
An immense cultural wealth manifests itself in more than 50 native languages still in use, ancestral customs, complex millenary dances, and varied musical rhythms that are heard at the foot of valleys and mountains.
Most citizens from countries in America and Western Europe do not need VISA to enter Peru. Citizens from Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Ecuador, Colombia, Bolivia, Venezuela and Chile can enter with their national identification document. Citizens from Mexico do not need a VISA with a valid passport.
If you enter for tourism, you can stay for 90 days (which is extendable by the immigration authorities).
It is recommended to carry light luggage in general. A backpack or suitcase averaging to around 10 kg per person is advised.
If you choose a tour that will go to Machu Picchu that will include train service, you have to consider reducing your luggage to a maximum of 5 kg per person.
Your remaining travel luggage may be left at your hotel most of the time, while your personal backpack may remain in transit under the care of our drivers.
For domestic flights inside Peru, carry on luggage is limited to 8kg / 18lb and checked luggage is limited to 23kg / 50lb.
You can visit Peru throughout the year, however, the best season to enjoy Machu Picchu and the Andes is from the end of March to the end of October, because it is the dry season. There are heavy rains in the Andes during January, February and March. During this season the coast has good weather and a lot of heat. The high tourist season is from June to August, so it is worth noting that everything is more expensive and requires booking in advance, during this time.
Banks are generally open from Monday to Friday, between 9:00 am and 6:00 pm. Most of them are also open on Saturday until noon (12:00 pm). It is possible to find ATMs in almost every city and most allow usage of Visa, MasterCard, American Express and other cards as well. You can withdraw money in soles or US dollars, although the commission and / or exchange rate is usually higher.
The official currency of Peru is the Sole (S /.) and you can receive centavos (a fraction of a sol) for 10, 20 and 50 cents. You can also find bills of 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 soles. You can exchange US dollars or the currency of your country in conventional exchange kiosks. US dollars are accepted here, but mainly in Cusco.
No vaccine is required to enter Peru. In case you are planning to go in the Amazon region of the country, the Ministry of Health recommends vaccination against hepatitis B and yellow fever. The latter must be administered at least 10 days before your trip.
You can travel with pets to Peru, but in case of dogs and cats, you must have an Export Certificate and a Veterinary Certificate that guarantees: the animal’s health, vaccination and deworming, with a date of issue 10 days before the trip .
Rabbits from Spain are banned. For other animals, such as ferrets and birds, you must bring a Sanitary Import Permit and allowing a Sanitary Inspection made by SENASA upon entering Peru.
To date, this type of operation is very common and secure. The majority of companies that provide this service are doing so with at least the minimum necessary security conditions. Although, it is always the responsibility of the traveler to trust and discern the entity or adequate service providers.
Another important detail is that many platforms, stores, or businesses may require an additional commission from 5 to 10% for electronic payment. In Peru, it is still very difficult and expensive to conduct business electronically.
The electricity in Peru is 220 Volts and 60 Hertz. If you want to use a device with 110 volts, we recommend to bring or buy an adapter to protect your equipment. Currently, there are some laptop and cameras that have dual voltage but it is always good to check and / or consult previously. Most 5 and 4 stars hotels have adapters but you will always have to consult them and confirm previous to arrival.
In Peru, we use 3 types of plugs: plugs with two flat plugs, plugs with two flat plugs and a rounded one, and plugs with two rounded plugs.
If you come from any country with another type of plug, you will have to use an adapter that you can buy at any hardware store or mall.
We strongly recommend buying travel insurance so you can be covered against accidents and common risks. Traveler’s insurance coverage varies widely, but usually it covers medical expenses, accidental death, disability, and unforeseen events during the trip (flight delay, delay or loss of luggage, theft). Products will vary according to the maximum amount of coverage, the days of travel and whether it is individual or family insurance.
QUESTIONS ABOUT TOURS
You can hire private tours which means that the services provided will be exclusively for you or your group. This means that you will have your own transporatation, driver and guide (when applicable).
How long should I book before?
It is recommended to book tours, especially those that include Machu Picchu, up to 6 months in advance, especially in the dry season (high season) between April and October.
Can I create a customized package?
Yes absolutely. All our packages are highly customizable to meet your preferences.
We recommend visiting Cusco and Machu Picchu from April to October as they are the months without rain, but at the same time, it is the high season and therefore it is recommended to book any service (hotels, tours, transportation, etc.) in advance. The climate in Machu Picchu is hot and humid, with a minimum average temperature of 12º celsius (54º fahrenheit) and maximum of 25º celsius (77º fahrenheit) during most of the year.
Tickets to Machu Picchu are sold by the Ministry of Culture of Cusco and have fixed costs in soles. The price to date is S / 152 soles (approximately $ 48 USD) although this price varies regularly due to the fluctuation of the exchange rate of the US dollar. Additionally, you can buy an entrance to one of the optional mountains: “Huayna Picchu” or “Montaña Machu Picchu” for $ 15 USD.
The (Boleto Turistico) Tourist Ticket is the ticket that allows you to enter 16 different places around Cusco and Sacred Valley. The price for foreigners is US $ 52.00 and US $ 28.00 for university students. The price for Peruvians or foreigners with a Foreigner Card is S / .70.00 and for minors and university students S / .40.00. This ticket can be purchased at the control point in Cusco or at the entrance of most attractions (check beforehand!).
If you travel during the dry season (April – October), you do not need to bring clothes for rain, but just jackets to protect yourself from the cold, especially between June and August since the nighttime temperature can fall to 0 ° C (32º fahrenheit).
If you travel to Cusco (Machu Picchu) during the rainy season (November – March) it is advisable to bring a raincoat as well as clothing resistant to water and wind.
In the Peruvian Andes, you should bring warm clothing because, despite the heat during the day, there are always strong winds.
If you plan to make a tour in the jungle area, it is also recommended to use sunscreen, insect repellent, and to wear shirts with long sleeves.
We also recommend bringing a hat, sunglasses, and (always) a bottle of water.
Any of these optional mountains must be reserved at the same time that you reserve your entrance to the archaeological complex of Machu Picchu, since they are not sold separately but are connected to the Machu Picchu ticket.
Huayna Picchu (2,720 m) is the most famous because it was the first discovered and has important archaeological remains. It is also good to mention that during the rainy season,(and for those suffering from vertigo) it is not the most recommended site. Only 400 people per day can access this mountain, in two groups of 200. If you want to add this mountain to your visit it is recommended to book well in advance (approx 3 months before). The climb takes 1 hour and a half (approximately) and normally 1 hour for the descent.
Montaña Vieja, also called Montaña Machu Picchu, is the other alternative, and for many the best alternative. This mountain requires a longer walk (2 hours uphill approximately) but it is worth it, since the view of ruins and the whole valley is spectacular.
Peruvian food is varied and within the tours regularly a combination of international food and food based on typical dishes of Peruvian cuisine is offered. Fruits such as apples, oranges, peaches, tangerines, avocados, and bananas are common.
If you have a special requirement for your diet, it is possible to coordinate beforehand to offer you the alternative you need. Make sure if you are vegetarian, vegan, celiac, or other specific needs, that you contact your tours in advance (as well as long distance flights and buses).
Also worth mentioning is that we do not advise drinking tap water. It is recommended to buy bottled water or to use purifiers in some emergency situations.
Altitude sickness is a disease that occurs due to the lack of adaptation of the body to the heights of the area. The main symptoms are: headache, physical tiredness, nausea and vomiting, lack of appetite, and more severe cases can cause Pulmonary or Cerebral Altitude Edema.
The best treatment is to oxygenate the body through oxygen shots which can be purchased at any pharmacy or local store.
There are also some pills that can taken before arriving at the destination, every eight hours. This medicine helps control and reduce symptoms.
It is also recommended to drink plenty of fluids and also to drink infusions of Coca (local herbs) that can help control the symptoms.
It is advisable to make the least physical effort on arrival in a city of height. On your first day, rest and limit any physical activity. Another suggestion is to breathe slowly and deeply, and eat light (not heavy meats) and avoiding some fruits such as apples, pears, or others that can produce gas or indigestion.
Yes. It is possible to find shops or street vendors during almost all the tours except in camping tours like the classic Inca Trail (Inka Trail).
For most tours of 1, 2 and 3 days you will not have problems in buying water, snacks or fruits.
It depends on the season. For the high season (April-October) there is a lot of heat during the day, so we recommend carrying a light change of clothes. Also bring some clothing to shelter during the start and end of the tour (in Cusco city) as it is higher and it is cold in the morning and at night.
If you have a tour through the jungle, it is recommended to wear light clothes that cover most of the body to avoid insect bites. Waterproof clothes for rainy season (December-March) or a windbreaker are essential.
Good trekking shoes that allow many hours of continuous walking without damaging the feet and protect your feet during some wet and difficult stretches.
– Tooth brush
– Toilet paper
– Wet wipes and / or liquid soap
– Sun screen
– Sun glasses
– Insect repellent
– Other additional elements:
– Flash light
– Extra batteries
– 1 spool of thread
– Rain cover for your backpack
– Small inflatable pillow
– Small knife
– Small miror
– First Aid kit:
– Aspirin / Paracetamol
– Tablets for diarrhea and vomiting
– Band aids for blisters
– Purifying water tablets for emergency
– Anti-bite cream (in case the repellent does not work!)