Peru is believed to be named after Birú, a ruler who lived near the Bay of San Miguel in Panama during the 16th century.
Peru Time (PET) is GMT -5 hours, meaning that it’s 1 hour ahead of New York and 6 hours ahead of London. Without calculating for daylight savings.
US Citizens will need:
- A passport with validity of at least six months upon entry.
- All U.S. citizens who do not also hold Peruvian citizenship must present a valid U.S. passport to enter and leave Peru.
- U.S. citizens do not need a Peruvian visa for a tourist or business stay of 183 days or less.
Visa not required for:
Citizens of the United States, Canada and Mexico. Citizens of most Central American countries (excluding Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic). Citizens of all South American countries. Citizens of all countries within the European Union and Switzerland. Citizens of South Africa. Citizens of Brunei, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. Citizens of Australia and New Zealand
For more detailed info, check out Peru Travel.
These are 3 popular international airports in Colombia: Jorge Chávez International Airport (LIM) in Callao, Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport (CUZ) in Cusco, and Rodríguez Ballón International Airport (AQP) in Arequipa, Peru.
Jorge Chávez International Airport (LIM) is the main international and domestic airport in Peru. The airport is in Callao which is around 11 km from Lima. The airport is named after the famous Peruvian aviator, Jorge Chávez.
Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport (CUZ) is the second most important international airport in Peru. Located in the major tourist attraction and city of Cusco, Peru. The airport was named after the Peruvian pilot, Alejandro Velasco Astete, who was the first aeroplane pilot to cross the Andes in 1925.
Rodríguez Ballón International Airport (AQP) serves the Arequipa region. The capital of the Arequipa region is Arequipa, which is the second largest city in Peru. The airport is named after the Peruvian aviator, Alfredo Rodríguez Ballón.
Peru has a few modes of public transport that are easily accessible. Larger cities within Peru have reliable transit options. Within these cities, there should be public transit such as taxis and buses.
- While Uber is currently legal in Peru, it is often not a recommended method of transport due to the possible scams and cancellations.
- The transit bus system in Lima is called El Metropolitano. While Arequipa’s public transportation system also has bus transport. El Metropolitano requires an electronic prepaid card. The card can be bought at every station and costs S/.4.50. There is also a flat fee for every ride which is S/. 2.50 ($0.83 USD).
- Larger cities in Peru have taxi services. However, taxis can be considered a risky mode of transportation as scams occur often.
- Lima recently opened their first metro line in 2012 called the Tren Electrico. The train, as of right now, is only one line with 16 stops. More lines are currently being built in hopes of expanding the metro around more of Lima. Cost of a metro ticket is S/ 5.00 ($1.48 USD) and the ride itself costs S/ 1.50 ($0.44 USD).
Peru requires a few safety precautions to have a safe and enjoyable visit. Theft and scams are common in the country so it’s important to be vigilant and wary of your surroundings.
The emergency number in Peru is 105.
Don’t leave valuable possessions in your back pockets.
Don’t bring valuables with you.
Be vigilant in bustling, crowded places.
Avoid going anywhere remote alone.
Safety Tips for the Night-Owls:
Try to avoid taxis at night as taxi scams are quite common.
Travel in groups- especially if you are a solo female traveler.
The U.S. State Department has safety guidelines for most countries, if you would like their information click on the link: U.S. Gov Travel
Peruvian climate is different depending on the region. Around the coast the weather is arid with high temperatures and little rainfall. Whereas in the Andes mountains the climate is cooler, with a rainy summer and dry winter. Lastly, the regions around the equator have similar rainy and hot weather all year long.
- December, January, February (Summer): Hot and rainy.
- March, April, May (Autumn): Dry and warm.
- June, July, August (Winter): BEST TIME TO VISIT
- September, October, November (Spring): Dry and warm.
Spanish is one of the official languages of Peru, with Quechua and Aymara being the other two official languages. However, Spanish is the most widely spoken language in Peru.
Here’s a few basic words and phrases:
Thank you: Gracias
You’re welcome: De nada
Excuse me: Perdóneme
I’m sorry: Lo siento
Please: Por favor
Good morning: Buenos días
Goodnight: Buenas noches
My name is…: Me llamo…
Check, please: La cuenta por favor
I don’t understand: No entiendo
Do you speak English?: ¿Hablas inglés?
Where is…?: ¿Dónde está…?
Call the police: Llama la policía
Peru is a country with a rich history and culture. Appropriate etiquette can guide you through the interesting and unique culture in Peru. These tips are helpful to avoiding any misunderstandings with locals.
- Politics is a tense topic in Peru to do Peru’s corrupt political history. It is best to avoid the topic of politics with the locals.
- It is important to express respect to the natives or Amerindians of Peru – do not refer to them as indios – which is a derogatory term.
- Peruvians shake hands when meeting friends and strangers while the native populations stay away from those interactions.
- Using your index finger to beckon someone is considered rude.
Wine and Dine:
- When entering a Peruvian home always use a proper greeting – such as buenas noches.
- Punctuality isn’t a large part of Peruvian culture it is expected for people to be late.
- Adventure gear is considered appropriate attire when walking around Peru but not in some restaurants.
Peru’s unit of currency is the Peru Sol (Nuevos Soles (PEN S/). Approximately PEN S/ 3.39 equates to USD $1.
Exchanging money is best done at the airports in Peru. It is recommended to not exchange money at ATMs on the streets.
Tipping! Tip is often not included on bills in Peru so tipping is seen as a respectable and welcomed practiced for travelers.
Peru’s electricity outlets are 220 volts with 60 cycle electricity. Peruvian plugs are typically 2 pronged and flat – which are compatible with U.S type plugs. While some plugs are two pronged and rounded.
Your converter may look like this:
Drinking water straight from the faucet is not safe to do Peru. Travelers are also recommended to not brush their teeth with the tap water. Either purchasing bottled water or boiling the water is the best option.
Here’s how to get a SIM card in Peru:
- Make sure your phone is unlocked.
- Claro and Movistar are the two most popular carriers on the market with the most extensive networks.
- Pick up your SIM cards at the airport or at a Claro or Movistar store.
- Peruvian SIM cards usually cost approximately S/.15 (about $5).
- The cost of making and receiving calls will vary depending on the carrier.
Peru legalised same-sex sexual consensual activity. However, same-sex marriage is currently not legal in Peru. Also since Peru is a socially conservative country open members of the LGBTQ+ community are often frowned upon if not outright harassed. For these reasons displays of affection are safer within private venues rather than public.
Recycling isn’t common practice in Peru. However, Peru just passed a law to allow the recycling of plastic water bottles among the other recycling.
Must See Highlights for Eco-Travelers:
- Hiking and exploring the Inka Trail and Machu Picchu
- River rafting expedition on the Amazon river.
- Trekking through the Amazon jungles of Peru.
The Incan empire was conquered by the Spanish Conquistadors and Francisco Pizarro making it a part of the Viceroyalty of Peru.
General Jose de San Martin proclaims Peru independent after capturing Lima from the Spanish.
The Peruvian-Spanish war takes place.
After years of political turmoil Peru returns to civilian rule. Re-electing Fernando Belaunde as president.
As the Peruvian army cracks down on guerillas and drug traffickers “disappearances” and deaths escalate.
Following over 3,000 reported political murders President Alberto Fujimori is elected on an anti-corruption platform.
President Fujimori is forced to face charges of dereliction of duty after fleeing to Japan.
Alejandro Toledo is voted president, defeating the former president Alan Garcia. President Toledo is Peru’s first president fo native origin.
Alan Garcia is voted president again.
Former President Alberto Fujimori is sentenced to 25 years in jail after he was proven to have ordered killings and kidnappings during his presidency.