(17/10/2022) Update: face masks no longer required indoors, on trains, or on flights. The only times you'll need a face mask are if you're experiencing Covid-19 symptoms, taking public transport, or visiting a hospital. Additionally, you no longer have to fill out an online health form before departure.
In summer I made my first trip to Peru since 2019, and I thought it would be useful to share my experience of travelling post-covid. I've gone into some detail regarding covid requirements for flights, visits, and hotel stays within Peru, and in particular mask wearing, as I know that many people have questions about this. As an overview, the experience was pretty similar to travelling pre-pandemic, but with the requirement to wear face masks when indoors. Overall, it was great to be travelling in Peru again and Peruvians were as welcoming as ever.
Flights to Peru
There's been a lot of news about airport issues, so I was a bit apprehensive as I flew out of Heathrow at 6.30am on 10 July. I had checked in online the previous day, which was straightforward and only required me to enter passenger details and acknowledge that I had complied with the covid requirements for my destination. For Peru, this meant being fully vaccinated (two doses) and filling in a short health form. I brought along hard copies of both the health form and the covid certificate.
The flight to Amsterdam was as normal with few people wearing masks and Schiphol airport was pretty much as it was pre-pandemic. On the flight to Peru, some passengers wore face masks but this wasn’t enforced by the airline staff. When I arrived in Lima, there was an announcement that face masks must be worn in the airport. Passport control in Lima was quick – taking only a few minutes, and in addition to checking passports, I was asked for a copy of my health form and vaccine certificate.
Hotels and Travelling
My hotel stays were great, with all services operating as normal. There was a full buffet breakfast and normal bar and restaurant services, as well pools, gyms and other amenities. The only sign of covid was the request to wear a face mask when walking around in indoor public areas. There is still a requirement to wear face masks in Peru when in indoor public areas although not when sitting at a bar or a dining table, and most people still do so.
Supposedly, you are meant to wear two masks, or a KN95 mask, but the only occasion I was ever asked to double mask was on internal flights within Peru. I was asked for my covid certificate on three occasions: firstly, to enter Peru; once to enter Talara airport in northern Peru (I was not asked for this to enter either Lima airport or Cusco airport); and once to enter a shopping centre.
Tours with guides were completely normal, although most guides wear a face mask. They were still very easy to understand, and if you do not hear something clearly, they will repeat it for you. The attractions were less busy than pre-pandemic. Although I didn't visit Machu Picchu on this occasion, I understand that visits are taking place as normal, although face masks are required on the train there.
Overall, the main difference between travelling now and pre-pandemic is that there are slightly fewer tourists so the sites are less busy, and you are required to wear a face mask when indoors. There is talk of these requirements being eased at some point, although there is still no sign of when this will happen.
Peruvians are still conscious of covid, but are living normally, going out to restaurants and bars as previously. Some people are a bit more cautious with greetings than pre-pandemic, but many people still greet each other with a kiss. I did not feel that the covid requirements in Peru had a detrimental impact on my visit, although if you really object to wearing a face mask at all, if it probably is best to wait until the mask mandate is relaxed.
Found this blog useful? Sign up to our newsletter for more holiday tips and advice!