Tips & Advices/ FAQs
INCA TRAIL LIMITED SPACES
Yes. To protect the historical trail, the number of people allowed to hike the Inca Trail each day is limited to 500. That is why, you should reserve your space as earlier as possible. Spaces can be filled up three to five months in advance. Spaces fill more quickly in the high tourist season, from May to September. More information about the ticket availability for Inca trail at Inca Trail Permits & Availability page.
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver’s license) are in order and that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. If you lose the originals while traveling, you’ll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills, altitude sickness pills. We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. As for the liquid containers, we suggest that you squeeze out excess air from those containers and place into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.
SUGGESTED READING LIST FOR MACHU PICCHU & PERU
Our reading list are custom-designed to complement specific Peru Summit destinations. We feature a handpicked selection of travel guides, maps, literature, books on art, cuisine, nature and culture, designed to help you get more out of your travels to Machu Picchu & Peru. Take a look here our list of books.
All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. IT’S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO HAVE THE CORRECT TRAVEL DOCUMENTATION.
TRAVEL SAFE HEALTHY AND SOUND
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal health-care provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.
There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.
- Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
- Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
- If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
- Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
- Pack sunscreen and insect repellant (for both active and warm destinations).
- You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.
- While no inoculations are required, vaccination against yellow fever is recommended, especially if traveling to the Amazon Jungle. Please consult your physician before traveling to Peru.
- You may encounter mosquitoes in both urban and rural areas, especially during wet seasons. Travelers are encouraged to bring insect repellant and consider wearing clothing that adequately covers arms and legs.
- Traveler’s diarrhea caused by contaminated food or water, often resulting in dehydration, is common. Take care to follow these steps to avoid or reduce the symptoms.
- Drink only bottled water.
- Avoid unpasteurized cheeses and unpeeled or unwashed fruits and vegetables.
- Eggs, meat and seafood should be properly and fully cooked.
- Please note that the popular Peruvian alcoholic beverage, Pisco Sour is often made with uncooked egg white.
- If you have contracted diarrhea, let your stomach rest. Do not eat for several hours or until you are feeling better.
- Drink bottled or boiled water and rehydration beverages containing electrolytes (sports drinks) frequently and in small amounts. (sports drinks) frequently and in small amounts.
- Resume your diet with simple and bland foods, such as crackers, rice, bread, potatoes, or bananas, which usually will help slow diarrhea.
HIGH ALTITUDE ILLNESS
Altitude illness occurs when there is a lack of oxygen in the air at high altitudes, including Cuzco (11,000 feet) and Puno (12,600 feet). Altitude illness will affect some travelers, with no apparent regard to age, gender or physical condition. Symptoms may include headache, loss of appetite, dizziness and trouble sleeping. For some it will pass within a few hours, however for many the condition if gone untreated may last for several days. We urge you to read and follow these suggestions in order to reduce the chances and/or severity of altitude illness.
- Prior to departure, speak with your health care provider. They may recommend the medication acetazolamide (Diamox), which has been found to reduce the symptoms if taken a day or two before you depart.
- If you are taking any outdoor tour ( Inca Trail, Salkantay Trail, Choquequirao Trek, Lares Trek). Please allow a minimum of 2 days in Cusco before your hike begins. To get your body acclimatize.
- Strict to a light diet the day before traveling to a high altitude. Foods found easy to digest include fish, chicken and hot liquids. Avoid fried foods, beef, lamb and caffeinated or alcoholic beverages.
- Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water before and during your stay. Bring with you saline nasal drops/spray beneficial.
- Upon arrival take it easy. Allow your body to adjust by lying down for 10-15 minutes. Rest as much as possible during the trip. Over-exertion can exacerbate the symptoms.
- Oxygen can be beneficial, and is easily found in airports, hotels and pharmacies.
- For headaches, over-the-counter medications like acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve) have been found to be helpful.
- Coca tea and wild mint (Muña) may ease the symptoms.
- A diet high in carbohydrates, breads, cereals, grains, and pasta can also help alleviate the symptoms.
Once again, we highly suggest you consult your personal healthcare provider before making the decision to travel to any high altitude destination and before choosing any course of treatment.
CLIMATE IN PERU
The sun is strong, particularly in the higher altitudes. Please bring a sun hat that has a circular brim all the way around (not a baseball cap) and sunscreen. Bring comfortable, cushioned walking shoes for the hard cobblestone streets, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Remember that during your trip you will be traveling between regions and will need to be prepared for all weather conditions. Please check to which season and region(s) you will be traveling and pack accordingly. Winter months (May – October) are cold. During those periods you will need a warm jacket, gloves, a hat and a scarf. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).
Peru’s climate varies by season and region. The coastal region (Lima) has two clear seasons, summer (December – March) and winter (May – October). Summer temperatures in this region can reach 80°F. Winter is generally damp and chilly, with temperatures dropping to 53°F. This region sees little rain, but can see mist and drizzle during the winter. The coastal area of Ica (Paracas, Nazca) enjoys warm dry weather throughout the year, with average temperatures around 75 – 80°F. The highlands region of Peru (Cuzco, Puno, Urubamba, Machu Picchu, Huaraz, Arequipa) have a dry temperate climate that also experiences two distinct seasons. The dry season (May – October) consists of sunny days and cold nights with very little rain. The rainy season in the highlands runs from December to March. Temperatures can change drastically during the day in this region, sometimes varying as widely as highs around 65°F and lows of 35°F during the same day. The jungle region (Amazon Jungle) is tropical and humid. Throughout the year temperatures range from mid to upper 80s during the day and drop into the 70s during the night. The summer months (April – October) are considered the dry season, though despite this name it should be remembered that it rains two-thirds of the year in the rainforest. The rainy season (November – March) sees frequent showers and high river levels.
Whether you are interested to climb up the Wayna Picchu mountain, from where you could see Machu Picchu from different angle, there is an additional fee of US$35 per person; there is a limited amount of people a day (400-person) in two groups of 200-person, the first group between 7:00 am to 8:00am, and the second group between 10:00 am to 11:30 am (make sure to match your regular Machu Picchu ticket with Wayna Picchu, see the sample below), please, let us know at the moment you book your trip, and we will book it for you; however, the availability of the spaces are available and subject to the booking of the spaces from all over the world, sometimes the spaces would be sold out, so there would not have any chance to book for you. Anyway, we will inform it to you.
Due to the order of Peruvian Minister of Culture and Peruvian Minister of Tourism to reduce the negative impact on the world’s heritage site, for better preservation and conservation of this sanctuary. Machu Picchu is accessed per hour with a limited number of people at each hour. Passport information must be submitted to Peru Summit Adventures at least 45 days prior to departure or at the moment of booking. This information is necessary to issue Machu Picchu tickets (otherwise tickets would sell out). Look at the following sample of schedule.
A person who purchases or request the ticket at 6:00 am can enter at that time or after that time e.g at 8:00 am, but, a person who purchases or request the ticket at 8:00 am cannot enter earlier e.g at 6:00 am or at 7:00 am. Each traveler must stay inside the Sanctuary within the designated schedule, not coming out from the Incan citadel, otherwise, it is not possible to go back to the Sanctuary for the second time at least you have a ticket for Machu Picchu Mountain/ Wayna Picchu mountain, in this case, you might re-enter for the second time. Your Machu Picchu entrance ticket will be issued at the first group from 6:00 am to 8:00 am depending on the availability of spaces, and you will be informed by your tour guide about the other rules and restrictions at Machu Picchu.
Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances. Visa cards are the most widely accepted cards. While ATMs are widely available, there are no guarantees that your credit cards or debit cards will actually work in Peru. Check with your bank. You should be aware that way to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of US$ dollar cash, travellers cheques and cards is best, although you will usually be charged a commission or given a less-favourable exchange rate for travellers cheques. Always take more rather than less.
We do not recommend bringing travellers cheques as they are very difficult to change in country.
CURRENCY EXCHANGE TIP: Please be advised that slightly torn notes, notes that have been heavily marked or are faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than 100USD (or equivalent).
As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com
INCA TRAIL EXTRA QUECHUA PORTER
Whether you would like to reduce the load of the trek, you may hire an extra porter to carry your personal ítems, from the beginning of the trail until Aguas Calientes; you may hire a porter to carry 7 kilos(14 pounds) for US$80, or 14 kilos (28 pounds) for US$160. In this service is included the porter’s salary, entrance fee to Inca Trail, food, etc. This option depends on your level of physical fitness, because the trek would be ardous and hardcore; that way, you would foreknow the uneasiness on the trail. Whether you decide to take this service, you must reserve your extra porter at the same time you book the trip, because the extra porter is counted within the 500-person, amount limited on the trail per day.
The prices are based on tour you are taking, the type of service, the type of destination, the number of participants. We mostly use three-star hotel in Peru’s destinations; however, there are no Hotels of that category in some destinations thus we use hostal. Whether you prefer to have four-start or five-start hotel we would provide you that class hotel, so you would add the price difference to the total balance.
Students with a valid student university card and who are under 25 years old get some discounts, Children under seven years of age receive a 10% discount. Children between 7 and 15 years pay the student price, but must show a copy of their passport ( these discounts are only for MACHU PICCHU).
Please Note; if you are traveling for high touristy season, traveling as student, or coming with kids send us a copy of passport to issue Machu Picchu, and train’s ticket at least 45 days prior to departure.
We need a minimum of two people to run any of our tours/ trips. We guarantee that your tour will be limited to a maximum of 8 people.
Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $400 (or equivalent) as an ’emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster, strikes) require a change to our planned route. It happens rarely!
Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is mandatory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your tour manager, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 300,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of baggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
Addresses -“Jr.” doesn’t mean “junior”; it is a designation meaning jirón, or street, just as “Av.” (sometimes “Avda.”) is an abbreviation for avenida, or avenue. “Ctra.” is the abbreviation for carretera, or highway; “Cdra.” means cuadra, or block; and “Of.” is used to designate office (oficina) number. Perhaps the most confusing element in Peruvian street addresses is “s/n,” which frequently appears in place of a number after the name of the street; “s/n” means sin número, or no number. The house or building with such an address simply is unnumbered. At other times, a building number may appear hyphenated, such as “102-105,” meaning that the building in question simply contains both address numbers (though usually only one main entrance).
Note that even though many area codes across Peru were changed back in 2003, you many find that many published telephone numbers may still contain old area codes. The area codes for the regions covered in this guide are: Lima, 01; Ica, Nazca, and Pisco, 056; Cusco, Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley, 084; Puerto Maldonado, 082; Puno/Lake Titicaca, 051; Arequipa, 054; Huaraz, 043; Trujillo, 044; Cajamarca, 076; Chiclayo, 074; and Iquitos, 065.
Most stores are open from 9 or 10am to 12:30pm, and from 3 to 5 or 8pm. Banks are generally open Monday through Friday from 9:30am to 4pm, although some stay open until 6pm. In major cities, most banks are also open Saturday from 9:30am to 12:30pm. Offices are open from 8:30am to 12:30pm and 3 to 6pm, although many operate continuously from 9am to 5pm. Government offices are open Monday through Friday from 9:30am to 12:30pm and 3 to 5pm. Nightclubs in large cities often don’t get going until after midnight, and many stay open until dawn.
DRUGS & LIQOUR LAWS
Until recently, Peru was the world’s largest producer of coca leaves, the base product that is mostly shipped to Colombia for processing into cocaine. Cocaine and other illegal substances are perhaps not as ubiquitous in Peru as some might think, although in Lima and Cusco, they are commonly offered to foreigners. (This is especially dangerous; many would-be dealers also operate as police informants, and some are said to be undercover narcotics officers themselves.) Penalties for the possession and use of or trafficking in illegal drugs in Peru are strict; convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and substantial fines. Peruvian police routinely detain drug smugglers at Lima’s international airport and land-border crossings. Since 1995, more than 40 U.S. citizens have been convicted of narcotics trafficking in Peru. If you are arrested on drug charges, you will face protracted pretrial detention in poor prison conditions.
Either chewed or brewed for tea, are not illegal in Peru, where they’re not considered a narcotic. The use of coca leaves is an ancient tradition dating back to pre-Columbian civilizations in Peru. You might very well find that mate de coca (coca-leaf tea) is very helpful in battling altitude sickness. However, if you attempt to take coca leaves back to your home country from Peru, you should expect them to be confiscated, and you could even find yourself prosecuted.
The hallucinogenic plants consumed in ayahuasca ceremonies are legal in Peru.
A legal drinking age is not strictly enforced in Peru. Anyone over the age of 18 is unlikely to have any problems ordering liquor in any bar or other establishment. Wine, beer, and alcohol are widely available – sold daily at grocery stores, liquor stores, and in all cafes, bars, and restaurants – and consumed widely, especially in public during festivals. There appears to be very little taboo associated with public inebriation at festivals.
All outlets are 220 volts, 60 cycles AC (except in Arequipa, which operates on 50 cycles), with two-prong outlets that accept both flat and round prongs. Some large hotels also have 110-volt outlets.
Smoking is common in Peru, and it is rare to find a hotel, restaurant, or bar with non smoking rooms. However, there are now a few hotels (usually high-end) and restaurants with designated non smoking rooms, and the trend is growing, albeit slowly. There are non smoking cars on trains, and most long-distance buses are also nonsmoking.
A general sales tax (IGV) is added automatically to most consumer bills (19%). In some upmarket hotels or restaurants, service charges of 10% are often added. At all airports, passengers must pay a departure tax: $31 for international flights, and $10 for domestic flights, payable in cash only (either U.S. dollars or Peruvian nuevos soles).
Peru is 5 hours behind GMT (Greenwich Mean Time). Peru does not observe daylight saving time.
Most people leave about a 10% tip for the waitstaff in restaurants. In nicer restaurants that add a 10% service charge, many patrons tip an additional 5% or 10% (because little, if any, of that service charge will ever make it to the waiter’s pocket). Taxi drivers are not usually tipped unless they provide additional service. Tour guides on group tours should be tipped ($3-$5, per person for a short visit, and $15 or more per person for a full day). On the treks with our private guide, tip about $ 50 or more per person for whole trek. And on the treks, the muleteers, cook, assistant cook, and the other personal staff are tipped $ 60 or more.
Public lavatories (baños públicos) are rarely available except in railway stations, restaurants, and theaters. Many Peruvian men choose to urinate in public, against a wall in full view, especially late at night; it’s not recommended that you emulate them. Use the bathroom of a bar, cafe, or restaurant; if it feels uncomfortable to dart in and out, have a coffee at the bar. Public restrooms are labeled WC (water closet), DAMAS (Ladies), and CABALLEROS or HOMBRES (Men). Toilet paper is not always provided, and when it is, most establishments request that patrons throw it in the wastebasket rather than the toilet, to avoid clogging.
Visitors should drink only bottled water, which is widely available. Do not drink tap water, even in major hotels. Try to avoid drinks with ice. Agua con gas is carbonated; agua sin gas is still water.
TRIP & TREK CHECKLIST / GEAR LIST
Every item on the gear list below is needed for your trip and trek. You can use the Gear Lexicon to get a better sense of definitions and possible substitutions about the trek in Peru.
- Original Passport
It’s the rule. A passport is one of the most important forms of identification a person can possess. It is important to have a passport if you plan to travel to a different country so that you will be able to prove who you are and where you are from. Since travel security measures have increased it is almost impossible to travel without a passport.
If you’re going anywhere outside the United States of America, you really can’t leave home without it. As of January 2007, everyone — including American citizens — who travel by air between the US to Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean, Bermuda, Central and South America is required to have a valid passport.
- Travel Insurance (and some copies)
There’s nothing like fine print and legal language to put a dampener on a spontaneous adventure, but many argue that if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel. They have a point, even though finding the best policy isn’t always easy. Travel insurance exists to protect a traveller’s investment in their journey and ensure they don’t lose out, and get medical help, if things go wrong. Whether you lose your luggage or have it stolen, get Delhi belly or tick-borne encephalitis, you need to know you can get help (without a stiff medical bill at the end of it). And that’s where insurers come in.
Before you start your trip, make sure to do your research so you can travel smart and safely. Most travel insurance providers offer a selection of policies that allow you to choose a policy suited to your needs.
- Sleeping Bag -15 / 5F Degree (or you can rent one from us)
High quality mummy-style with hood. Sleeping should be made of down fill have baffle construction. A waterproof/breathable shell fabric is helpful but not required. Down sleeping bags are lightweight and highly compressible as compared to synthetic bags. At this temperature rating a synthetic bag would be too heavy and bulky to use. Since your body heats the sleeping bag an efficient sized sleeping bag would have little excess room. But you need to balance efficiency with comfort so a little extra width and length is recommended. This is especially true if you need to sleep with a warm water bottle or extra clothing.
- Backpack to Carry Your Things
Check your gearlist for specific size requirements. Not all Brand/Model suggestions are specific to your trip. This category gives models ranging approximately from 2,000 to 3,000 cu.in. (32 to 50 Liters) Pack should be lightweight and simple. Regardless of volume – the single most important factor in choosing a backpack is getting the correct frame for your body size. For Day packs, with internal frame climbing/trekking/sightseeing pack of approximately 35-40 liters in carrying capacity. Emphasize simple, lightweight designs.
- Phone and Camera Charger and Adapter
No one wants their exciting trip overseas to go awry, but it’s important to realise that something negative could happen, perhaps this time you will have forgotten your camera and phone charger. Don’t forget to consider them on your trip.
- Bathing Suit (if you would like to enjoy the hot springs in Aguas Calientes or in other destinations of Peru).
It’s important to pack these items on your trips to Peru, specially when you are taking longer trips on Peru classic tours. Because you’ll have the chance to plunge into the hot springs on your trip.
Digital cameras work well at altitude but be sure to include a back up battery. It’s recommended to bring along an additional memory card if you plan to take a large number of high resolution photos. Like all battery operated devices temperature effects performance of batteries. For optimal performance it’s recommend to keep your camera warm. You can either store it in your pack wrapped with clothing or you can keep inside your jacket while travelling. Always make sure to protect your camera from moisture either with a zip loc bag or a small lightweight weather resistant case.
- Power Bank Battery
A power bank is extremely beneficial mainly if you are traveling with a phone. This is precisely why more and more phone owners are buying this add-on tool. On certain occasions, it can be simply life-saving. Just imagine the situation when you are expecting some awesome pictures of Machu Picchu from Sungate after 4-day hiking the inca trail and your phone goes off! Even the thought can burn a hole in your pocket. Won’t it be nice if you have an alternative device to fall back on during such times? This is where power banks come into play.
- Extra Batteries
Be sure to include a back up battery, as you are traveling or trekking for longer times.
- Memory Cards
It’s recommended to bring along an additional memory card if you plan to take a large number of high resolution photos or trips for longer time.
- Torch or Headlamps
A modern outdoor LED headlamp offering 90-200 lumens of output. Fresh, installed batteries plus spare batteries. Weather-resistant models are strongly preferred.
- Deet or Mosquito Repellent
Small, plastic, leak-proof bottle. Recommendable over 30% Deet.
- Hiking Poles ( or you can rent one pair from us)
Collapsible skiing/trekking poles with snow baskets. Three-section varieties are preferred.
- Baselayer Bottom
Non-cotton baselayer bottoms that should fit snugly without constriction.
- Baselayer Top
One to two long-sleeved baselayer tops. Lighter colors absorb less sunlight which can be nice on sunnier days. This layer must be constructed of a non-cotton material such as merino wool or polyester.
- Midlayer Top
A mid-weight, form-fitting, lightweight fleece layer for use over baselayers or as a baselayer in cold conditions. Hoods are optional but recommended.
- Softshell Jacket
This breathable but wind-and-weather resistant jacket is a key part of a mountaineering layering system. We recommend a hooded model. This layer must fit well over your midlayer top and baselayer top.
- Hardshell Pants
Non-insulated, fully waterproof shell pants that must fit comfortably over your baselayer bottoms and softshell pants. Full-length separating size zippers are preferred; shorter side zippers are allowed if you can put on and take off your pants without removing your boots.
- Hardshell Jacket
A non-insulated, fully waterproof shell jacket with a hood. Must fit comfortably over your baselayer, midlayer, and softshell. Helmet-compatible hoods are required.
- Lightweight Down Jacket
We recommend a lightweight down jacket to serve either as a layering piece or as stand-alone insulation when appropriate.
- Buff/Neck Gaiter
A must-have for all outdoor activities, the UV Buff is a versatile replacement for the bandana and serves a multitude of purposes. Fleece neck gaiter provides extra warmth around your neck. A Buff is not limited to being used only as a neck gaiter. It can be used in a variety of positions and functions.
- Lightweight Liner Gloves
Very lightweight wool or synthetic liner gloves that offer a snug, comfortable fit. Lighter colors absorb less sunlight while still offering UV protection. Black or dark-color gloves are also acceptable.
- Synthetic Hiking Shorts
Look for a comfortable pair of hiking specific shorts that wick away moisture and allow for wide range of motion.
- Softshell Gloves
Midweight, lightly insulated gloves for use when mittens are too warm and liner gloves are not warm enough. Leather construction offers ideal durability and grip on ropes and other gear.
Several 1-2 ounce tubes of SPF 30+ sunscreen. Zinc-oxide added versions are preferred. One ounce is typically sufficient per week, but several tubes . Sunscreen loses SPF rating over time; we strongly recommend brand-new sunscreen.
High-quality, UV-blocking sunglasses with good all-around protection are recommended. A good fit is critical for comfort, and high-quality lenses are a must due to high-altitude sun. Try on glasses to ensure good coverage.
- Hydration System
We recommend using a 2-3 liter hydration bladder for maximum comfort and ease during the trek. Please bring a 1 liter hard-sided water bottle as well in case your hydration bladder develops a leak.
- Trash Compactor Bags
Three bags for use as waterproof pack/stuff sack liners. Compactor bags are made from a heavy plastic and stand up well to prolonged mountain use.
- Travel Luggage
For traveling to Cusco, we recommend standard luggage with a travel lock, and for traveling the absolute Peru, we recommend a larger luggage with a travel lock. Medium-sized soft-sided duffels will be provided for transporting your belongings during the trek, and your travel luggage may be left behind at your hotel.
Include your standard toiletries- toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, deodorant, etc. Small amounts of cosmetics are OK to bring if desired. Towels, shampoos, and soaps are all provided at hotels on Peru’s destinations.
Several tubes of SPF 30+ lipscreen. As with sunscreen, be sure your lipscreen is new. Recommended: Aloe Gator Medicated 30 SPF Lip Balm.
- Running Shoes
Lightweight, comfortable running or walking shoes are recommended for off-mountain use and pre-and-post trip travel. In some situations, these may also serve as approach shoes
- Hiking Boots
Waterproof hiking boots designed for hiking in cool to cold conditions. Modern, lightly insulated boots with room in the toe box and good support should be stressed. Models like the Scarpa Terra GTX, Asolo TPS 520 GV are ideal. Shoes should be lightweight and comfortable. Shoes are sometimes referred to as trail running or cross-training. If you have any ankle issues or need more support look for a shoe that has a higher cuff. Higher cuff shoes are sometimes referred to as light hikers but are made of softer materials.
- Sports Sandals or Water Shoes & Flip-Flops
Used for crossing streams. Should be supportive and provide good traction. And flip-flops are ideal for hot springs, and taking shower.
- Short Underwear
Two to three pairs based on personal preference. Synthetic or wool fabrics only; bring a comfortable athletic style for any top and bottom underwear.
- Trekking Pants
1-2 pair of lightweight nylon trekking pants. We recommend models that are simple, made with synthetic fabrics, and offer pockets for convenience.
- Lightweight Down Jacket
We recommend a lightweight down jacket to serve either as a layering piece or as stand-alone insulation when appropriate.
- Hiking Long Sleeve T-Shirts/Shirts
Lightweight nylon Long Sleeve T-Shirts/Shirts designed to be used while traveling and trekking. They are extremely air permeable, dry quickly and provide sun protection.
- Liner Socks
If using liner socks, you will need 1-3 pair of smooth, thin wool or synthetic socks. Liner socks can reduce boot friction and increase comfort for some. Must fit well underneath hiking socks.
- Hiking Socks
Bring three pairs of light to midweight wool hiking socks, plus one pair of heavyweight hiking socks in case of cold weather.
- Water bottle or Canteen
Bottles should have a wide mouth, leak proof lid and made of copolyester (BPA free plastic). Lid should have some type of keeper strap that connects to bottle. No water bag or bladder systems, they freeze or are hard to fill and no metal bottles as lips have a tendency to stick.
- American Dollars and Peruvian Soles in Cash
Bring in reasonable amounts, thinking in paying some bills along the trip. We recommend to bring a debit card or credit card.
- Sun Hat, Cap
Any style of lightweight hat for shading the head will work well. Baseball caps and sombrero-style sun hats are the most common.
100% cotton bandana can be used to provide sun protection on your neck or used as a headband to keep sweat out of eyes. Larger bandanas provide wider sun coverage and are easier to tie than smaller versions.
- Lightweight Synthetic/Wool Hat
Low profile warm hat that covers the ears. Knitted wool or air permeable fleece preferred. Wind stopping fabrics are also an option but tend to trap moisture inside.
- Warm Hat: Wool/Synthetic
Knit wool or fleece hat that fits comfortably. Hat should be highly air permeable which allows water vapor to move through the material and evaporate. Wind blocking/waterproof laminate is not recommended as breathability is significantly reduced.
- Trash Compactor Bags
Three bags for use as waterproof pack/stuff sack liners. Compactor bags are made from a heavy plastic and stand up well to prolonged mountain use.
- Internet Device
Small netbooks, electronic notepads, and even smartphones may be used to stay connected or surf the web where internet connections are available.
- Travel Clothes and Casual Wear
For travel into and out of country, and for all evenings spent in hotels, casual clothing is recommened. Bring comfortable clothing suitable for lounging and traveling. A swimsuit is also recommended.
Always recommended for getting high-quality rest. Soft foam rather than wax models recommended for ease of use and disposability.
- Sports Drink Mix
Powdered or tablet electrolyte drink mix.
- Trail Snack Food Items
Bring your favorite energy bars, GU packets for summit day, drink mixes etc.
Please review the food and water information available in your Travel Information Packet. A close reading of this information is important towards a smooth trip. We recommend taking plenty of time consider this information. Please contact the Gear Department with any food-related questions.
- Hand Sanitizer
Alcohol based hand sanitizer in a small plastic bottle with flip lock lid. For sanitizer to be effective it must contain at least 60% alcohol.
- Toilet Paper, and Face Tissue Paper
Small roll. Store in a plastic zip lock bag.
- Crédit or Debit Card
No matter where you go or how long you travel, preparing for how you’ll pay for things overseas is one of the easiest ways to save money while travelling, period.
Currency exchange booths at airports and banks can be convenient, but a lot of your money goes towards exchange fees (e.g. $10 per exchange) and hidden commissions padded into poor exchange rates. With a bit of research and planning, you can save hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in fees over the long-term!
Credit and debit cards are the cheapest, easiest ways to get money and make payments overseas. Credit cards are accepted worldwide, and when you need cash, ATMs are abundant in every country. ATMs are internationally networked through the Visa/Plus and Mastercard/Cirrus networks. You enter your PIN and withdraw your cash just like you would at home, while the exchange rates are automatically handled by the banks.
However, some credit and debit cards are better than others! Hidden in the fine print, banks still try to secretly add commissions and fees to each payment or ATM withdrawal made abroad. Even if you don’t travel a lot, these fees add up quickly.
We’ve rounded up the best credit and debit cards around the world that minimize or eliminate these fees, putting more money back into your adventure funds!
- Medications & Prescriptions
Bring any personal prescriptions, plus Pepto Bismol, Cipro (500mg tablets), Metronidazole, Z-Paks (250mg tablets), Diamox (250mg tablets), and a variety of standard painkillers.
- Personal First-Aid Kit
Should contain lip salve, Aspirin, anti-histamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhoea, re-hydration powder, extra prescription drugs you may be taking. And basic medical supplies in a compact package- we recommend basic painkillers, Moleskin, first-aid tape, Band-Aids, and anti-septic wipes or gel, Anti-inflammatory tablets (e.g. Ibuprofen).