PACK LIGHT! It’s important to pack light due to luggage restrictions.
Domestic Flight Restrictions
Domestic Flight Baggage Restrictions: Passengers may bring checked baggage of up to 23kg (50lbs) total, free of charge on our domestic flights. This can be either as one bag or two bags, but all bags together must not exceed the 23kg limit. Carry on bags cannot exceed 9kg (20 lbs) plus a small handbag.
Overnight Bag for Sacred Valley/Machu Picchu
From March 22nd – 25th (3 nights) our group will be staying in the Sacred Valley for 2 nights & 1 night in Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu). We will not be bringing any large luggage with us for these 3 nights so everyone will need to bring a smaller overnight/carry-on size bag to fit items and clothes needed for these few days. We’ll be leaving the larger bags at our hotel in Cusco.
We’re getting on and off trains, and must walk our luggage to the hotel a few blocks
in Aguas Calientes which is why smaller, lighter luggage is a must. Our tour leader will make sure the Cusco hotel stores the group’s luggage in a safe place.
It will be the end of the rainy season in Cusco so bring layers. When it’s sunny it can get quite hot and with the high altitude be sure to bring a hat and sun block because you can get burned very easily. Temperatures range from 45-70 degrees in Cusco & the Sacred Valley. In Machu Picchu it can be slightly warmer. Cusco still enjoys plenty of good weather in March as this begins the warmer time of year. If it does rain, it is likely to be a short, heavy shower in the afternoon followed by sunshine. We recommend: layers: a t- shirt or top + sweatshirt or sweater (fleece will be ideal) + rain jacket with a hood. Bring a hat, scarf, and gloves (cool mornings & evenings) and very comfortable shoes since you will be walking a lot—hiking and/or sneakers. A small backpack/day bag is a must to store camera gear, rain jackets, etc.
– Comfortable and strong tennis shoes/sneakers. Hiking shoes if doing the Inca Trail – T-shirts
– Bathing suite (thermal pools in Agues Caliente!)
– Warm tops for the cool evenings in the highlands – Rain Jacket/ Waterproof Jacket w/ Hood
*MUST HAVE SMALLER CARRY ON for Sacred Valley & Machu
– Comfortable clothes in general as dress is informal
– Small backpack/ Day bag
– Camera & Lenses
– Overnight bag/carry-on size suitcase
– Sun block
– Money Belt
– Moisturizer (very dry in the highlands) – Poncho
– Hiking Poles
– Insect Repellent
– Travel Insurance cards
– Personal First Aid Kit:
- Prescription medicines
- Large & small ziplock bags to protect cameras and other technology
- After bite
- Anti-bacterial hand lotion
- Dramamine/bonine if you get travel sickness
Everyone’s susceptibility to altitude sickness is different. Our guide will advise the group about how to prevent and prepare for the high altitude on arrival in Cusco. A 2 hour nap when we get to Cusco along with lots of water and Coca Tea (provided by all the hotels) is a great way to prevent onset as well.
Drink water only when you have the certainty that it is safe. Do not drink water from the faucet or wash your teeth with it. Always use mineral water and check the bottles to make sure that it has not been opened yet and filled up (to avoid this, you can drink gasified mineral water). In restaurants, you should request to open the bottle in your presence and never take ice in your drinks (the ice cubes often are made with water from the faucet). Water from the faucet is made drinkable with chlorine or iodine drops if you choose to bring these with you.
Major credit cards are accepted almost everywhere (Visa, American Express, MasterCard). ATM machines are the best way to get cash. They operate in dollars and soles (local currency) and are everywhere in Lima and Cusco.
The currency is the “Nuevo Sol”. You DO NOT have to bring any local currency with you to Peru. We recommend exchanging money near the hotel in Lima and our tour leader can show everyone where to go. The rates will be better here than at the airport. You can also pay in US dollars in many places and will receive the local currency in return. *Make sure the US dollars you bring don’t have rips, tears, marks, or other damage as they will not be accepted.
Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD = 3.30 Peruvian Sole (PEN)
We recommend bringing $200-400.00 cash and then using the ATMs as you need them to get the best exchange rates. How much you spend really depends on the amount of shopping and optional activities you do.
Tips and gratuities to hotel staff & our local guide are expected. Budget approx. $ 2.00 – $4.00 per person per day for hotel staff, $ 1.00 per bag if you use porters, and $5.00 – $10.00 per person per day for our guide. Again, tips are optional but expected in the travel industry if you feel the service deserves it. In total, we recommend bringing 100- 200 USD to have for tipping throughout the trip. Our tour director will assist with questions regarding this while on the trip.
*You do not need to tip in local currency (USD are OK).