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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

About Karikuy

What is Karikuy?

Karikuy in Runasimi, the language of the Incas, means to “live in a light-hearted way”. Karikuy as an organization borrows this ancient philosophy in the way we handle our tours, volunteer and humanitarian programs. You can read more about Karikuy and our projects by visiting the about section of our web site.

Are you a travel agency or a tour operator?

We are both. We operate tours in and around Lima and south to Ica. At the same time we hire the best guides and operators in cities such as Arequipa, Cusco and Puno to bring our clients the best services at the best prices. The founder of Karikuy has personally visited every location and picked out the best hotels, tours and guides in order to give you the best possible experience in Peru.

Is Karikuy a non profit or charity?

In heart we are, that is to say we are not registered as a 501(c)(3) in the United States due to all activities taking place in Peru. Nor are we tax exempt in either the USA or Peru. Karikuy currently runs two humanitarian programs known as Kawsay and the Karikuy-Haugen Fund where we ask for donations to run those programs. 

Karikuy Tours Peru on the other hand is the for profit side of the business although we do spend a considerable amount of our profits to run the Karikuy Volunteer Program as well as promote and execute our humanitarian programs with marketing and logistics. The Karikuy Organization as a whole aims to promote Peru to travelers and let them know that through their business they contribute and help advance our volunteer and humanitarian programs.

Where are your main offices located?

Our main office is located at our HQ and volunteer house in Lima (Karikuy House). Here at Karikuy Tours we like to keep things small and personal. Honestly give us a call and you’ll see that 8 times out of 10 it will be the founder Julio C. Tello himself or a Karikuy Volunteer that will pick up the phone and talk to you about Karikuy and our tours. 

The advantages of being a small company is a very personal service with attention to detail. We want your business and for you to leave Peru with a fantastic story to tell your family and friends. Our customer service is unbeatable and you can feel more then secure knowing you have a dedicated team ensuring that your trip is smooth and stress free.

If you are in Peru and prefer to book a tour in person please e-mail us or call us at our Lima office (01-367-0303) and we will either take your order by phone or go to your hotel/hostel and help you book the services you need.

Do you have an office in the United States, Europe?

No, we are currently based out of Lima, Peru. We decided that it was in the best interest of our customers in order to bring you lower prices and better customer service to stay local. Working from Lima we no longer have to send payments abroad to our workers, this means that the prices of tours in general have dropped. We are now also more quickly able to respond to our customers on the ground when they are in Peru. We are also saving a great amount of income by not having to rent and sustain an office abroad. These are savings that are passed on to our customers.

Where can I find customer reviews and testimonials?

You can read our customer testimonials on our Testimonial page. We also have some reviews on our Facebook page, look for more testimonials and reviews being added weekly. Testimonials are received without obligation, if you submit a testimonial we encourage you to be honest, we post all reviews we receive, even negative ones.

How and when can I reach you?

The fastest ways to reach us is by e-mail and telephone, you can call us US Toll Free at 1.888.802.4622. If you e-mail us we respond within 24 hours. Our hours of operation when you can reach us by phone is from Monday to Saturday from 9AM to 6PM Lima Time, that’s 14:00 UTC/GMT to 21:00 UTC/GMT.

You can also contact us instantly using the website chat or the following social media tools: 

Skype : Karikuy

Facebook: facebook.com/Karikuy

GoogleTalk : Karikuy

Are you hiring?

Yes! Karikuy is currently looking for regional managers for our international sales division. Currently we are expanding our services to reach a higher audience around the world and we are looking for motivated individuals who are interested in marketing our tours and services to countries such as China, Japan, Germany, Israel, Italy and the Netherlands. In short we are looking for managers to handle all sales and bookings for those markets. You can send us your CV to jctello@karikuy.org, all applicants must be fluent in the language of the country they wish to apply for.

booking

Why are your prices lower then other tour companies?

Karikuy knows Peru, we live here, grew up here, know the people and the prices that you should be paying for services. Because Karikuy is a small and personal company we don’t have a huge corporate overhead to support, this saves us and our customers money. We come from a strong working class background this translates into our business ethic; we want you to get the most out of your vacation from your hard earn cash, you’ve earned it!

Karikuy Tours takes out the middle men. Our guides, hotel owners and operators are our friends not just employees. These relationship in turn are transferred to our customers who are treated with great service. Many international tour companies bloat their prices, they have call centers, consultants, webmasters, CEO’s and stockholders to pay which is understandable. However at the end of the day what matters most is that you are getting these same services in Peru from small companies like Karikuy at a fraction of the price of the larger tour companies, many of which use the same hotels and tour operators. We even have large international travel companies that use our services to book tours for their own clients

Karikuy also believes that having low prices allows our customers to spend more on goods throughout Peru such as tapestries and souvenirs, this money then goes directly to the artisans and workers you buy from helping them with their cost of living and boosting the local economy.

How far in advance should I book? do you have late booking fees?

We recommend that you book at least 3 months in advance, this helps you save the most money as it gives you time to get great prices on domestic airfare as well as ample time to make reservations with popular hotels and jungle lodges. If you plan to book the Classic Inca Trail then we recommend booking at least 4 months in advance due to availability.

We allow you to book your tour(s) up to the day before you start our services. However we do charge a late booking fee if you book less then 2 weeks before your trip start date, this is not a fixed price fee and varies depending on the service. This fee is for administrative costs incurred by having to put together your program quickly. Keep in mind that last minute customers take precedent over clients booking in advance, which is why we charge this fee.

How do I pay for my tours?

Some tours allow for quick online payment, others you will need to contact us regarding availability or to personalize an itinerary further. We currently accept PayPal. Here you can pay for your tour via your Paypal account as well as your credit or debit card.

Do I need to put down a deposit or can I pay in full?

We always recommend to our customers that if they are able to then to send us the full deposit. Why? because when you pay in full we make all your reservations at once, most importantly hotel reservations. We do accept deposits of 50% of the trip cost that need to be paid in full one month before the star of your trip.

The problem with deposits is say you’ve paid us the 50% and we go ahead and reserve the most important items on your itinerary, usually airfare, jungle lodges or special tours like the Inca Trail. This leaves us with no money to reserve your hotels, all hotels in Peru guarantee you your room with payment only. So there is always the possibility that the most popular hotels that we quote you for your specific itinerary may become unavailable if booked too late in advance. In that case we look for another hotel of the same class and service, however we want you to be at the best hotels and encourage you to pay with anticipation, we do have the ability to hold hotel rooms but only for so long and with certain hotels.

What is Paypal and how do I use it?

With Paypal you can quickly and easily buy from stores across the web and track all your orders and shipping in one place. Paypal services have fraud protection policies that cover you against unauthorized purchases made online, and they don’t share your purchase history or full credit card number with vendors. You can keep your e-mail address confidential, and easily turn off unwanted e-mail from stores where you use Paypal. To Create a Paypal account click here.

Do you ask for credit card numbers or information?

We will never ask you for any personal credit card or bank account information. If any Karikuy employee asks you for this information please contact jctello@karikuy.org immediately. For booking purposes we will only ever ask you for your email, full name, country, age, passport number, and emergency contact information.

Do you accept any other types of payment?

Currently we accept direct deposits to our bank account or bank wires. Western Union is also a possibility although we believe they would charge you too big a fee especially if you are booking a high priced tour.

Do I have to pay any taxes on the purchase?

You will not pay any extra taxes or fees. The prices we have on our tour pages are totals and include all credit card processing fees, booking fees and local taxes. If we create a custom tour for you we will always send you the final price with all surcharges included.

Will I receive a receipt for my purchase?

Yes, you will receive a receipt via Paypal. If you have made your payment via direct deposit or wire transfer we will send you a PDF invoice.

What is your refund policy?

If you must cancel for any reason, all reservation deposits will be returned minus a cancellation fee. Cancellations must be in writing. If made 45 or more days prior to departure, the cancellation fee is $250. If made 45-30 days prior to departure, the fee is 50% of the Trip Cost and if 30 days or less prior to departure or thereafter, the cancellation fee is 100% of the Trip Cost. No partial refunds will be given for unused hotel rooms, meals, sightseeing trips or trekking arrangements for any reason whatsoever. The Trip Cost is quoted as a package and credits are not given for services not used. Cancelled Two and Four Day Inca Trail Tours are non refundable.

 

Depending on the situation we always work with our customers to find a resolution, especially for emergencies. For more information please refer to our Terms and Conditions

Are there any hidden fees?

We do not have any hidden fees, the prices you see on our website are what you get.

We always recommend you read through the details of your tours and itineraries we send you carefully as some tours have admissions that need to be paid on site, these are fees we cannot collect in advance such as Municipal Fees which are paid directly to the locals. In general these fees are low cost and range from $1 to $5.

tours and tour packages

What's the difference between Tours and Tour Packages?

Tours are individual one day programs lasting from half day to full day. They include pick up from your Hostel/Hotel, guide and the tour with admissions and transportation included. Tour Packages are multi day tours, they include Hostel/Hotel, airport transfers as well as guides, transportation and admissions. Domestic airfare can also be included in Tour Packages. Overall you save by booking a Tour Package as all your services are bundled compared to an individual one day tour.

How can I get the best price for a Tour or Tour Package?

The best way to save money on your trip is to book in advance, the further in advance the better as you will secure low prices on domestic airfare and low seasonal prices for hotels and lodges. If possible we also recommend travelling with a large group in order to save cash as we have group discounts available, sharing hotel rooms with your friends and family by booking double, triple or quadruple rooms also helps lower the total price of your tour.

Do you operate your own tours?

At the moment we do not operate all of our tours, however we do hire the best operators in a particular city and location to make sure you receive a great experience as well as customer service. to make sure you receive the best guided tour of a region we connect you with great guides and tour operators that have years of experience and will be able to answer all your questions about a region.

What's the deal between fixed date trips and non fixed date trips?

Fixed date trips? Nope no more of that, Karikuy has thrown away the fixed date trips. Yes it might save us a little bit more money but you should be able to travel on your schedule and not ours. The only times where we might give you a fixed date would be for special events such as Inti Raymi or if there is limited available dates on the Inca Trail. So go ahead and contact us about that dream trip to Peru already! It’s all low prices all the time now at Karikuy.

What kind of hotels do I get with my tours? can I pick my own?

We use several types of lodgings with our tour packages, they begin with the standard Hostel class, this class comes standard with all our tour packages in our tour section. Hostels in Peru should not be confused with the general perception of hostels that many have, in Peru they are quite nice, you can compare them to economy hotels in the United States. With clean rooms and private bathrooms, they are not dorms nor are they shared unless you specifically ask for a dorm room. At Karikuy we have done extensive in the field research to bring you the best lodgings in their category, and we check them yearly as some hotels change ownership that affect overall service. 

Next we have 3 to 5 star hotels available, these hotels include breakfast and room service and generally have their own restaurant. You will find the hotel upgrade information under each itinerary under the tour program of your choice or listed in the itinerary calendar of our custom itinerary pages we send out for custom tours.

You are also free to pick hotels you may have been recommended or want to check out, just let us know the name of the hotel and e-mail us the website and we will contact the hotel if we don’t already have a relationship with them to get you an agency price that they only give travel agencies, this is yet another way of how we pass the savings along to our customers.

Will I have the same guides throughout my tour program?

At Karikuy we have specialized guides in each location you visit, for that reason you will NOT have an overall guide accompanying you throughout your trip, but many guides you will meet upon arrival in each location. Personal private guides ARE available for hire for your entire tour, however they are expensive as you are basically paying for another person to accompany you throughout your tour.

When you arrive in Lima for the start of a Tour Package you will be met by your tour planner who will take care of your needs until you finish your tour. This planner will make sure your trip goes smoothly and communicates with all your guides in each destination, you will be able to contact your tour planner at any time leaving you to enjoy a stress free vacation.

Can I customize my own tour package or create one from scratch?

Yes of course, we create customized tour packages for our customers at no extra charge. We recommend you fill out our custom tour form so we get an idea of what your looking for, if you don’t know where to begin you can e-mail us and we’ll send you some recommendations depending on the amount of time you will be spending in Peru.

Are meals included in your tours?

Yes and no, some of your hostels and all of your hotels include breakfast but we do not include meals to leave you open to the massive pallet of dishes that feature in Peruvian Cuisine. Your tour planner will recommend some dishes and we provide you with restaurant recommendations in our Karikuy Guide so that you can pick and choose based on your own diet. Your guides in each location will also describe the local cuisine as well as give you restaurant recommendations and even translate the menu for you if you invite them to a meal.

Multi day treks such as the Inca Trail, the Salkantay Trek, Choquequirao and Jungle Inca Trail do come with all meals included. Lodge programs such as our Puerto Maldonado Tours also come with all meals included.

What should I pack for my tour?

Packing for your trip relies heavily on the season and locations you will be visiting. Peru has almost all of the worlds climates nestled between the coast, the Andes and the Jungle. For that reason it is important that you to pack layered clothing, that is bring a piece of clothing for both hot and warm conditions, clothing you can take on and off easily as the climates change. For an overview of what your packing list should look we have included a recommended packing list on our Karikuy Guide, it has tons of useful tips for a journey to Peru.

Airfare and Flight Information

Why don't you include domestic flights (Peru) in your programs?

Airline prices are too erratic and change daily, this makes it hard for us to put a fixed price on our tours with domestic airfare included. We could add a bloated price to buffer any changes in airfare prices like other tour companies, but we don’t agree with this approach. You shouldn’t have to pay more then twice the amount for airfare because of the changing airline prices. For this reason when you book a tour with us we ask you if you want to include airfare, we then find an airline that is right for you, whether based on your budget or preference for service and flexibility. This way you get the most affordable prices on airfare and a better overall price on a tour package.

How much can I expect to pay for domestic flights?

Current average prices from Lima to Cusco round trip range from $200 to $300, this is just an average as the main airlines; Peruvian Airlines, Star Peru, LATAM and Avianca all have different prices. Prices for other destinations such as Arequipa and Iquitos also vary. For current and accurate pricing for a certain route, please e-mail us where you want to go and when, prices largely depend on dates, you can save nearly 50% on airfare if you book at least 2 months in advance.

Can I choose my own Airline? Do you recommend an Airline above the rest?

Yes we give you the flexibility to choose your own airline if you wish, just note that only some routes are handled by certain airlines and not all of them. If we had to recommend an airline it would be close between Peruvian Airlines and Star Peru, as they are both very affordable. Star Peru has the advantage of a newer fleet and less delayed flights while Peruvian Airlines has the most affordable prices as well as flexibility to catch later flights however their fleet is older and they have frequent delays which is the reason why they offer flexible rescheduling of flights.

LATAM has the most modern fleet and best service however we don’t agree with their policies of charging International travelers and Peruvians different prices. LATAM Peru also charges almost triple what Peruvian Airlines and Star Peru charge, flight flexibility is an added purchase as well. We only book with LATAM Peru upon request.

What time should I be at the airport for my domestic or international flight?

For domestic flights we recommend being at the airport at least one hour and a half before your flight departs. For international flights at least 2 hours and a half before your flight departs. The international airport in Lima is one of the best in the world, very efficient and straightforward, this makes it very easy to check in and hop on the plane to your destination.

Are there any Airport Taxes I should know about?

There are currently no airport taxes for International and domestic flights, these we absorbed into airline fare a few years back. The only Aiport tax you may encounter is for the Nazca Lines as they have their own airport tax of 50 soles, or around $16.

Do you recommend any affordable international carriers?

South American airlines like Avianca, Copa, AeroMexico are your best bet to finding affordable airfare to Lima, Peru. We also recommend Spirit Airlines or JetBlue if flying from the USA, they have very affordable flights although you do have to pay for your own meals as well baggage.

We also recommend you check with travel agencies that cater to South Americans, this could be difficult if you don’t live in a large city but it’s well worth the time as these agencies usually get the best prices and promotions on flights. We also recommend the big online booking sites such as travelocity.com, expedia.com, and cheapair.com.

Do you book international flights on request?

Yes, if perhaps you are too busy to look into purchasing international airfare then just e-mail us your travel dates and closest international airport you are flying out from and we’ll take care of the rest. Please note that we do charge a small fee for this service so if you do have the time consider booking your own international airfare to save you some cash.

travel information

When is the best time of year to visit Peru?

It varies by region, for the coast (Lima, Ica, Nazca, Mancora, Trujillo) the best time to visit are the months of November to March when it is summer on the coast. In February in particular you have events like Carnaval that bring with them lots of parties and water fights between the sexes, very fun time of year on the coast. Don’t get me wrong you can visit coastal cities during the winter (June to August) but Lima will be fairly overcast and cold as well as some other coastal cities.

For Andean cities such as Cusco, Ayacucho, Huaraz, Puno and Cajamarca the best time to visit is during their dry season which runs from May to September. During this time you can expect warm days and chilly nights and very little rain, although lately with the bizarre weather there have been days where there have been downpours of rain in Cusco during the dry season.

The Amazon Jungles of Peru have two season and they both have their rewards. If seeing our glorious high watered forest and getting close-up looks at lots of birds and mammals (and enjoying a slightly cooler temperature) sounds attractive, then the December to May season might be your best choice. (Remember: Despite being the “rainy” season, the Amazon only gets about 10% more rain than falls in the low water season). If jungle hikes, seeing exotic migratory birds perch on trees as they pass through Amazonia, still having the chance to see monkeys and other mammals, and going on great fishing expeditions top your list, you might be happier choosing the warmer, low water season (June – November).

How many days should I plan my trip for Peru?

We recommend at least 7 days to visit Peru, this gives you enough days to arrive, spend a night in Lima and go on to visit either Machu Picchu and Cusco or another area of Peru. With 7 days we can program for you a tour with Machu Picchu, Cusco and Lake Titicaca and Puno.

Ideally we would much rather you think about a good 14 days in Peru. This gives you enough time to do a Southern Circuit tour of Peru which will let you see a lot of the country. With this time you could also program a visit to a Jungle Lodge in Iquitos or Puerto Maldonado. Otherwise we can put together a tour package for any amount of days that you have free, for this shoot us an e-mail and we’re more then glad to put an itinerary together for you.

How far in advance should I book my trip? Do you have late booking fees?

We recommend that you book at least 3 months in advance, this helps you save the most money as it gives you time to get great prices on domestic airfare as well as ample time to make reservations with popular hotels and jungle lodges. If you plan to book the Classic Inca Trail then we recommend booking at least 4 months in advance due to availability.

We allow you to book your tour(s) up to the day before you start our services. However we do charge a late booking fee if you book less then 2 weeks before your trip start date, this is not a fixed price fee and varies depending on the service. This fee is for administrative costs incurred by having to put together your program quickly. Keep in mind that last minute customers take precedent over clients booking in advance, which is why we charge this fee.

Do I need a Visa to visit Peru, what are the requirements?

U.S citizens do not need a visa to visit Peru as long as it’s a tourist visit of less then 90 days. You will be given your visa upon arrival in Lima. It’s important that you hold on to this visa as many hotels will ask to see this document in order to exempt you from the IGV or Peruvian Sales Tax.

Below we have listed countries that can get a tourist visa at the airport immigrations or any other Peruvian border without applying for it at an embassy or consulate:

North America: United States and Canada 

Central America: Citizens of most Central American countries (exception Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama) 

South America: Citizens of all South American countries 

Europe: Citizens of all countries within the European Union and Switzerland 

Africa: South Africa 

Asia: Brunei, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Taiwan 

Oceania: Australia and New Zealand 

As Visa and Entry Requirements can change without prior notice, we recommend you check the current regulations before your trip to Peru with the nearest Peruvian Consulate or Embassy.

Do I need any medications or inoculations to visit Peru?

There are no required inoculations to visit Peru unless you plan to visit remote areas of the Peruvian Amazon, in which case you will need a yellow fever shot and you may want to take malaria medication as well. Areas in which jungle lodges operate in Puerto Maldonado and Iquitos have not seen recent cases of either Malaria or Yellow fever. However it is always better safe then sorry in the rare chance that there should be an outbreak. 

Ask your doctor regarding travel to Peru, we strongly recommend you bring medications for bacterial infections (Ciprofloxacin) that can affect your stomach as well as antidiarrheal medication (Immodium). Dramamine is also great for Altitude and motion sickness. For more Health Information for Travelers in Peru visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.

What is Altitude Sickness and how can I prevent it?

Altitude sickness, also known as Soroche in Peru, occurs when their is not enough oxygen reaching your brain. This occurs at elevations over 3000 meters high. Shortness of breath and a pounding heart are the first symptoms as the thin air in high altitude can make you feel light headed and dizzy. As your symptoms progress you can get extremely nauseous and suffer from vomiting and intense headaches if not remedied by either medication or descending in altitude.

Preventing altitude sickness is easy, always allow for a free day when you arrive in a location with high altitude. Relax in your hotel and lay down, drink plenty of fluids and avoid strenuous exercise. It can take up to a week to become full acclimated, many travelers don’t have that amount of time so in order to acclimate fastest it is best to take it easy, avoid alcohol, cigarettes and heavy foods. If you begin to feel mild symptoms then we recommend you drink some Coca Tea (legal in Peru), even drinking carbonated drinks like Coca Cola help. It’s important to realize that you get altitude sickness by not feeding your brain enough oxygen, so make sure you are breathing well, take decongestants if you have a cold or can’t breathe well.

In locations such as Cusco and Huaraz there are clinics where you can purchase oxygen as well and buy medications in case you are having a real hard time acclimating.

Should I purchase travel insurance before my trip?

Travel insurance is recommended to protect your trip as well as your belongings and scheduling should any unforeseen events arise. The customer must provide and pay for his/her own travel insurance. If you decide not to purchase travel insurance then you are directly responsible for your own belongings and well being. Karikuy and our guides will always be around to help you should any situation arise, however when it comes to paying for any medical expenses or additional flights due to airline cancellations, then the customer must take responsibility for these.

What's the weather like in Peru?

The weather in Peru varies in each location as we have 28 of the world’s 32 different climates. Generally speaking, May through October is the dry season; November through April is the rainy season, and the wettest months are January through April in the highlands. In mountain areas, roads and trek paths may become impassable. Peru’s climate, though, is markedly different among its three vastly different regions. The coast is predominantly arid and mild, the Andean region (highlands) is temperate to cold, and the eastern lowlands are tropically warm and humid. 

On the desert coast, summer (Dec-Apr) is hot and dry, with temperatures reaching 25° to 35°C (77°-95°F) or more along the north coast. In winter (May-Oct), temperatures are much milder, though with high humidity. Much of the coast, including Lima, is shrouded in a gray mist called garua. Only extreme northern beaches are warm enough for swimming. 

In the highlands from May to October, rain is scarce. Daytime temperatures reach a warm 20° to 25°C (68°-77°F), and nights are often quite cold (near freezing), especially in June and July. Rainfall is very abundant from December to March, when temperatures are slightly milder–18° to 20°C (64°-68°F) dropping only to 15°C (59°F) at night. The wettest months are January and February. Most mornings are dry, but clouds move in during the afternoon and produce heavy downpours. 

Though the Amazon jungle is consistently humid and tropical, with significant rainfall year-round, it, too, experiences two clearly different seasons. During the dry season (May-Oct), temperatures reach 30° to 35°C (86°-100°F) during the day. From November to April, there are frequent rain showers (which last only a few hours at a time), causing the rivers to swell, and temperatures are similarly steamy.

What should I pack for my trip?

Packing for your trip relies heavily on the season and locations you will be visiting. Peru has almost all of the worlds climates nestled between the coast, the Andes and the Jungle. For that reason it is important that you to pack layered clothing, that is bring a piece of clothing for both hot and warm conditions, clothing you can take on and off easily as the climates change. For an overview of what your packing list should look we have included a recommended packing list on our Karikuy Guide, it has tons of useful tips for a journey to Peru.

Is Peru safe to visit? do you have any safety tips?

Peru is safe to visit and the security in the major cities are getting better as the economy and tourism grows. That is not to say that there is no crime, like any of the other big cities of the world you must be able to blend in to your environment to be able to avoid being targeted for theft. Here are some tips to have a great experience in Peru without having to worry or become paranoid about your belongings.

1. Travel in groups and avoid dark streets at night – pretty straightforward, thieves will target you if you stumble alone into a dark street. Avoid areas that are not well lit, this applies even if you are in a group
2. When using ATM, have a buddy – have a friend keep guard from behind when using an ATM and always make sure there is nothing jammed into the card entry slot, also never assist when someone asks for help at an ATM, common thief tactic.
3. Keep belongings unseen in transports – when in taxis put your belongings under your feet or in the back compartment in a station wagon. If thieves can’t see what you have then you won’t get robbed.
4. Bring locks – Several hostels and hotels will have safety boxes where you can leave your valuables, most of the time you will have to supply your own locks.
5. Blend in – don’t carry large bags or baggage with you all the time, leave any valuables at your hotels, look like a local. If you must whip out the travel guide book or map then head into a cafe or restaurant and take a look at it, try not too look lost or confused. If anyone approaches you for help make sure it is an authority otherwise decline for help especially if they become overbearing.
6. Wear backpack on front, bring travel purse – Again avoid having large bags on you, if you must carry a backpack where it on your front to avoid theft from behind. Invest in a travel purse, where you can have your money and valuables hidden from view, avoid loud purses and wear your wallet in your front pockets.
7. Be Mosca – a commonly used phrase in Peru is Mosca or Fly, the saying means to be awake to your surroundings. When leaving a restaurant or nightclub be sure to check that you have not left any personal belongings. When approached by a vendor make sure that they are not trying to take your attention away from you as another vendor may be taking the camera out of your pocket while you don’t realize it.
8. Nightclub and Bars – Nightclubs also called discotecas in Peru are a great way to meet new people and dance the night away. However you must always be cautious of a dubious few that spike drinks, this goes for both sexes. Keep an eye on your drink and if possible don’t accept drinks from strangers, also be wary of anyone trying to sell you drugs at these venues as they could be undercover police.
9. Taxis – If possible always have your hotel call a reputable taxi driver for you if you decide to go explore your location further. Always agree on a price before you get into a taxi to avoid confusion later, taxis are seldom more then S/.20 for a nearby ride. In general it’s S/.15-20 for a half hour ride. If catching a cab away from your hotel be sure your driver has visible identification, if possible go to the nearest hotel and ask them to call you a cab.

What is the currency in Peru? Exchange rate?

The currency in Peru is called the Nuevo Sol or just Sol. The current dollar to sol exchange rate is $1 = S/. 3.35

How can I get the most out of my trip to Peru?

We recommend you do some reading on Peru’s history to make the most of your trip. Check out our own Blog for more information about Peru. Travel guides are a great resource as well, this way you get to know a little more about the locations you are visiting. 

We can’t stress the importance of learning about our incredible cuisine. Search for recipes online and make a list of dishes to try in Peru. These should include Ceviche, Pachamanca, Anticuchos, Papa a la Huancaina, Causa, Rocotto Relleno among others, there really are too many to name.

Learn a little Spanish. A little Spanish goes a long way in Peru, not only will it help you get better prices on taxis but you will be able to barter better on souvenirs and goods. Interacting with Peruvians will be more rewarding as you will learn where the local hot spots are as well as get recommendations for places to see and restaurants to try. Even just learning to say thank you (Gracias) and please (Por Favor) when asking for things will go a long way in how well you are treated by others.

Most importantly we ask that you keep an open mind while in Peru. Our culture is very different from the westernized world with different values and customs. You should always be mindful of these and be very patient with people. Although Peru is going through a great period of economic growth and prosperity we are still a third world nation and our service sector still needs room to better develop. We’re sure you’ll have a great time in Peru if you visit with no expectations and with a free spirit attitude and curiosity to explore a new culture.

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