BEFORE YOU GO
If you're interested in a trip to Peru, you've come to the right place.
Below you'll find all the information you need about how to pack for your adventure, what to prepare for logistically with your flights and travel documents, and the nitty-gritty details like whether or not you'll need an oxygen tank. Take a look and let us know if you have any additional questions! We're always happy to chat and can be reached directly at 1.888.870.0903.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: WHAT'S THE WEATHER LIKE?
Temperatures in Peru vary based on the season. Coastal destinations like Lima can be hot, sunny, and humid. When traveling to the Andes, one should expect rain between November and March. Temperatures can drop dramatically at night. Come with layers so you are prepared for all conditions and check the forecast before you fly for the most accurate information.
Q: HOW MUCH CAN I PACK?
Everything needs to fit in one carry-on bag and a checked duffel. Keep your duffel well below 50 pounds, and keep in mind that the train to Machu Picchu restricts luggage weight to 11 pounds per person. Don’t worry–just ask us for details on storing your larger duffel for this portion of the trip.
Q: CAN I USE MY CELL PHONE?
Even if you have an international plan, you may or may not get service in Peru. Check with your provider before leaving the country. But hey, don’t you want to unplug anyway?
Q: CAN YOU DRINK THE WATER?
It is safe to eat the fresh fruit and vegetables at the properties, but be careful when you are on your own in Lima and Cusco. It is best to request bottled water in restaurants. You will be provided with safe drinking water at our properties.
Q: ISN'T PERU AT A HIGH ALTITUDE?
For the majority of travelers, especially those who take time to acclimatize, the effects of altitude will be limited to some extra huffing and puffing. Most hotels have oxygen tanks tucked away for those moments when the altitude is getting to you. When ascending to highly elevated destinations, keep in mind the following tips:
- Take it slow: Acclimatization is the key to avoiding altitude sickness. Give your body time to adapt.
- Take it easy: Avoid serious exertion during your first 24-hours at altitude.
- Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of fluids...and not cocktails!
- Eat your carbs: High-carbohydrate foods such as pasta can help reduce the risk of altitude sickness. But avoid eating too much, especially on your arrival day.
- Go herbal: Chew coca leaves or drink coca tea. After all, its the traditional way of the Andes.
Q: WHAT'S THE DEAL ON TIPPING?
Tipping is a personal and individual matter; the decision to tip and how much to give is entirely yours. Please take note that all rooms, food and beverage in all hotels and lodges in Peru already include a 10% service charge as established by Peruvian laws. Check for the words propina or servicio near the bottom of your bill to see if gratuity has already been accounted for. Any additional tip you may wish to give hotel staff and personnel is optional and will depend on how satisfied you feel with the service received. Guides are always tipped separately and the amount may vary according to your satisfaction. Plan to tip your full-day guide $10 per person, per day, and assistant guides $5. Lodge staff appreciate $5-10 per night. For quick transfers, a $2 per person tip is appropriate, and $1 per bag for porters. Peru operates a dual currency system so tipping can be done in USD.
Q: HOW MUCH MONEY SHOULD I BRING?
The Peruvian currency is the Nuevo Sol, and is around 2.8 soles to $1 U.S. dollar (check in with xe.com to determine current exchange rates) but they operate on a duel currency system. Although the government prefers people use Soles, purchases can also be made in USD. It is best to carry about $300 per person in small bills, aside from tipping money–just make sure your bills are 2005 or newer to prevent fraud issues and are free of small tears or defaced in any way. Credit cards are accepted throughout the country, and are great for use at restaurants in the city.
Come with a few options so you’re not scrambling, and remember to store everything in a money belt or pouch for safe keeping.
TRAVEL DOCUMENTS AND VACCINATIONS
PASSPORT & VISAS
If you are a citizen of a country which has a visa waiver agreement with Peru, such as the United States and Canada, you don’t have to worry about getting a visa. All you need is proof of a return ticket to your home country. If you are from a country outside of the 50 with waiver agreements, visit passportsandvisas.com.
Before you leave home, make several photocopies of your passport. We also recommend bringing at least two extra 2x2 passport photographs. This will facilitate the replacement of your passport in the event your passport is lost or stolen. Keep your passport, money, vouchers, and international air tickets in a money belt or pouch.
- Your passport must be valid for six months after your date of entry into antarctica
- Please have 2-3 blank pages in your passport, you world traveler you!
Peru is a healthy and hospitable region to visit and no vaccinations are officially required. However, health concerns throughout the world change regularly so we strongly advise that you consult your physician regarding medications and immunizations that are recommended or mandatory. It’s best to be up to date on Hepatitis, Tetanus and Typhoid. Please note that the Typhoid vaccination takes 14 days to become effective, so make sure you schedule your appointment with your travel health clinic far enough in advance of your trip. Yellow fever and malaria vaccines are recommended for those visiting the Amazon. You can also check the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
CHARGERS AND ADAPTORS
Peru operates on 220-voltage electricity so converters and adapters are necessary. We advise you bring your own adaptors for charging equipment. The lodges on the Lares adventure turn power off from 11 pm - 6am, so best to bring a head lamp for late-night reading.
THINGS YOU'LL NEED
You’ll need to bring both trekking gear as well as dressier options for city stays and dinners, although there is no dress code while traveling in Peru. Here are our recommendations:
- Short sleeve shirts
- Long sleeve shirts
- Hiking pants & shorts
- 1-2 nice outfits for nights out in the city and evening events
- Underclothes and socks
- Bathing suit
- Rain shell & rain pants
- Comfortable and functional hiking boots & sandals, socks
- Fleece/sweater or sweatshirt
- Daypack & hiking poles
- Cold-weather gear: gloves, warm hat, warm jacket
- Headlamp/reading light
- Insect repellent with deet
- Sunglasses, sunscreen, and hat
- Binoculars: we recommend getting a Maven or Leica pair with 10 x 42 magnification
- Extra money and money belt to securely carry all passports, vouchers, and air tickets
- Normal prescriptions and medication for heartburn, indigestion, diarrhea, etc.
- Doctor’s note if you have a metal hip, knee replacement, etc.
- You may want to bring a small laundry detergent
Remember! Your carry-on should include your passport, money, toiletries, camera, and a spare set of clothes.
WHEN YOU'RE IN THE AIR
Check-in time for all international flights is three hours prior to departure time. This allows for delays at the security screening units in each terminal. There is no first class fast track through security screening, so get there early to avoid any stress.
All scheduled & charter flights are subject to unique weight limits that cannot be exceeded for safety reasons. Please ensure your checked duffel bag weighs well under 50 pounds. Be aware that for smaller flights the weight limit will be less. If this limit is exceeded, then travelers will be held responsible for the extra costs incurred to upgrade the flight, or may have to leave luggage behind. All flights are subcontracted to independent aviation companies who are entirely responsible, and therefore liable, for all aspects of the flying operation.
First of all, take a deep breath. You’ve already packed a spare set of clothes, your passport, money, and camera in your carry-on. Next, provide your airline with contact and delivery information for your first stop. Let our ground operator there know that your luggage has been lost, and they will track it while you enjoy your stay.
IN CASE YOU MISS US
If your family needs to contact you for emergency reasons while you are away, please have them call the Outside GO office in Santa Fe at (505) 795-7710.
For after hour emergencies, please use the following:
SANDY CUNNINGHAM | (505) 231-0699 | firstname.lastname@example.org
BRITTANY BENGRY | (616) 401-9058 | email@example.com
CHIP CUNNINGHAM | (505) 231-0355 | firstname.lastname@example.org
ON THE GROUND
- Marite Kuanveng | Hotel B +950 30 48 54 | email@example.com
- Mountain Lodges of Peru (+51) 979 38 12 63 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Saira Gutierrez | Mountain Lodges of Peru (+51) 991 831 408 | email@example.com
- Carlos Loayza | Mountain Lodges of Peru (+51) 966 514 973
- Inkaterra (+51) 989 116 913 | Carla Huertas in Lima
- (+51) 984 109 283 | Edson Chacon in Cusco
Within Peru, when making international calls, dial 00 + country code (51) + city code (Cusco is 084) + telephone number.
- For inter-city calls: 0 + city code + telephone number.
- Public telephones only accept coins.
- When calling from a cellphone to a local landline, dial 01 + telephone number
- For calling other cellphones just dial the number directly.