Peru, with its interesting history, ancient culture, natural beauty, and exquisite cuisine, is one of the main destinations in the world. Whether for pleasant, adventurous, and cultural trips, the Andean country offers endless possibilities. But beyond its popularity and fame, there must be many questions popping up in your mind. Is Peru a safe destination? What to do when you travel abroad? How to plan a trip to Peru? And our team knows how to answer these queries. We know very well that planning a trip to Peru is not always as simple as booking a flight or packing your bags. But you don’t have to worry, Peru is definitely a reliable, tourist-friendly, and easy-to-explore place. The Machu Travel Peru team will give you some tips that you should know before you can travel abroad. They will help you make the most of your trip. Let us begin!
General safety tips to travel abroad
- About security in Peru
- Exchange money in trusted places
- Avoid walking alone after dark
- Drugs are not a joke
- Take registered taxis
- Don’t drink tap water
- Ayahuasca Tourism
- Learn some Spanish
ABOUT SECURITY IN PERU
As we mentioned before, Peru is a friendly place. But like any other place in the world, it has its own group of scoundrels. It’s usual to see petty crimes. For example, pickpockets and purse snatching are particularly common in crowded areas such as bus terminals. A good way to avoid bag snatchers is to put your backpack at your feet and put your leg through one of the straps. As long as you are cautious, you will not have problems. But if you are thinking about how to travel alone for the first time, it is a good idea not to carry your valuables in sight.
If you are a victim of assault or robbery, you must go directly to the Tourism Police. They are trained in handling all kinds of serious crimes against tourists. In addition, they will contact your embassy. For this reason, it is a good idea to register your passport at the embassy, in case your documents are lost or stolen. Similarly, if you have any complaints about your travel agency, hotel or bus company, the Tourist Protection Service or INDECOPI can help you. They have a 24-hour hotline and their staff also speak English. Despite this, as long as you are cautious, you can feel safe in Peru.
EXCHANGE MONEY IN TRUSTED PLACES
One of the main things to keep in mind when you want to travel abroad is to protect your savings. To avoid the counterfeiting of money, we recommend that you exchange your money at trusted places. Such as banks, your hotel of choice, or currency exchange offices in central areas. The most trusted places are usually more crowded and within more touristy or popular areas. If you plan to use an ATM, be careful before and after. ATM fraud is common throughout Peru. There is an open theft technique called express kidnapping. It consists of a thief who forces you to withdraw money from your bank account. Therefore, it is better if you use an ATM located inside the bank rather than one on the street.
Likewise, credit card fraud is also widespread in Peru. So keep an eye out for suspicious transactions in your bank account during and after your trip. Also, keep your credit card in view when making purchases. Don’t let “undercover criminals” have a chance to steal your card. If you are considerate enough and take these tips into account, you won’t have a problem. You can also consult our guide for safely trip, where we delve into this topic.
AVOID WALKING ALONE AFTER DARK
Unfortunately, violent crimes such as armed robberies, muggings, and even sexual assaults are especially present in deserted urban areas. For this reason, one of the travel tips for beginners we give our clients is to avoid walking alone at night. And if you plan to do it, at least do it in a group. The streets at night are just as dangerous as they are during the day. But if you frequent suspicious places or without much apparent activity, you can find yourself involved in unsolicited situations. When you want to travel abroad it is important to be cautious.
We don’t want to sound sexist, but women should be especially careful to avoid isolated areas. Be aware of your surroundings and avoid carrying not only your valuable belongings but also a large amount of cash. Whether you are traveling alone or with your family, it is a good idea to tell where you are going and when you will return. If you are looking to know the nightlife of Peru, no problem. Just make sure you drink your own drinks and don’t leave them unattended. Also, thinking about hitchhiking can also be a bad idea. Peru does not have a culture of hitchhiking and it is better to travel with official means of transport.
DRUGS ARE NOT A JOKE
This is not a moral issue. But you should know that there is zero-tolerance for drugs in Peru. Different drugs are considered a serious crime. If you are caught with any drugs, you could receive a very long jail sentence. Especially if you plan to transport with them or take them with you. In other words, don’t put your freedom at risk. If you are an adventurous soul and looking for new sensations, there are numerous alternatives. If you are looking to try new things, there are many traditional cocktails to try in Peru. And there is also a great variety of tours and sites that will be more than enough to amaze you.
TAKE REGISTERED TAXIS
If you were wondering if it is safe to travel to Peru, the answer is yes. It is definitely safe to vacation within the Andean country. But you must follow all these tips that we have for you to be safe. In Peru, unlicensed taxis can be dangerous and very common. Even when taxi drivers appear to be friendly and chatty, they can also be scammers. So keep your eyes open and don’t let that kindness blind you. Also, when hailing a taxi, be sure to keep doors closed, windows closed, and your valuables out of sight.
To illustrate, near Jorge Chávez International Airport, there are some notorious robbery locations. Criminals can break your window and steal your belongings. This is not seen all the time, but they are things to keep in mind. We don’t want to scare you, just make you aware of possible situations. Anyone wondering how to prepare for long-term travel has to take this often obvious advice into account.
Now there is a direct bus called Airport Express Lima that connects the airport with the Miraflores district and vice versa. The price is cheap and the bus has free Wi-Fi, no luggage restrictions, and USB charging ports. Without a doubt, a good and safe option for visitors looking to get to their hotels safely.
DON’T DRINK TAP WATER
If you plan to travel abroad, keep in mind that the water will not be as in your country of origin. The water in Peru is not good in terms of sanitation. This usually contains too much chlorine and can result in a very bad trip. If you want to avoid stomachaches and some days in bed, it is advisable to avoid drinking it. Instead, we recommend drinking bottled, filtered, or boiled water if necessary.
Also, do not accept food or drink from strangers. And before they offer you something, it is a good idea to check the ingredients. Especially if you plan to eat on the street. One of the best packing tips for carry-on luggage is to bring bottled water. It is also a great idea to carry water purification tablets. In the same way, it will not be difficult for you to find bottled water in the country.
After enjoying some interesting tours to Machu Picchu, most travelers flock to jungle shelters to seek a deep connection with their souls. Many times these retreats offer a place of peace where tourists seek, in some way, to fix their lives. And among all the short vacation ideas to enjoy, a jungle retreat is one of the best.
Since immemorial times, traditional healers used exclusively Ayahuasca. But nowadays, it is very fashionable among curious tourists. But keep in mind, that many of these ceremonies are not legally approved. So, you won’t see them within the itineraries of prestigious companies. Therefore, you have to be sure you want to take part in this and look for a reputable and trusted shaman. With its growing popularity, drawbacks have also arisen. Unfortunately, false shamans take advantage of foreigners. Many times, tourists are not guaranteed a 100% safe ceremony. Consequently, our advice is that you should seek a reliable source of information before taking part in this important experience.
LEARN SOME SPANISH
When looking to travel abroad, it is a good idea to learn about the local language. In Peru, the main language is Spanish. And our team believes that you will feel safer if you learn Spanish. At least it is a good idea to have a basic grasp of the language during your trip. Remember that looking lost or confused can be a risk and make you an easy target.
So take the appropriate precautions and you will be fine. You can learn some common phrases and typical greetings that are used in Peru. Nowadays with the different technological advances, you can take advantage of the new mobile applications. There are infinite online translators and dictionaries that can make your trip easier. Still, avoid having your cell phone in view of everyone and pay attention to your surroundings.
“IF YOU NEVER GO, YOU WILL NEVER KNOW.”
Despite being a safe place, local crime in Peru remains a problem. But this does not mean that you have to press your belongings against your chest. Just keep these tips in mind that will keep you safe and make your trip unforgettable. In addition, Machu Travel Peru also recommends that you check when is the best time to visit Peru to really enjoy an exciting adventure. We hope we have been helpful. If you want to know more about our different routes, you can consult with our team of qualified advisers.