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My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

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Saint Louis...
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My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Hi all! I'm in the initial stages of planning a trip to Peru & MP for sometime in the fall of 2008 (August or September work best for my husband and I). I've tried to read up on all of the posts and it's very overwhelming.

Help!! (lol)

My question is, what is the best way to start planning my trip? Should I go to a bookstore and read up on Peru? Contact a travel agent? (We prefer to plan things ourselves without involving travel agents if preferable - we're weird and stubborn like that!) Google it?

Our vague idea (very vague and subject to change) is a 2 week trip flying into Lima, 2-3 days in SV area, hike Inca trail, 2 days in MP, 2-3 days in Cuzco area, then fly home. Where should I start?

Also, I realize that a lot depends on what kind of hotels we choose, where we decide to eat, etc, but could someone give me a ballpark (even if it's a LARGE ballpark) estimate on what a trip for 2 such as this for 2 weeks will cost us? We've got a vague idea of what we need to have saved up and think we're close, but I just want to have a vague idea.

Thanks in advance!

Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

That sounds like you have a good itinerary outlined already but you need to choose a date. Maybe check to see if there are any festivals in those areas during some possible times that you want to go. Next, plan your Inka trail time since you need to book that and get your return train tickets well in advance. After that maybe book your international flight.

I'd start looking at agencies that do the trail.

To plan our trip, I mostly used this site and the Lonely Planet guide - two excellent resources. TA is great for hotel reviews, finding out things to do and the best way to do them as well as cost ranges.

Saint Louis...
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2. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Thanks for your response! I hadn't considered festivals, etc, but that's a great idea! I had assumed booking the trek and train tickets was going to be the first thing to secure and plan everything else around that. I'm going to start with researching travel groups recommended on this site for the trek.

Any idea about how much in total (again, a large ballpark figure is ok with me) this trip will cost?

Thanks again, I'm starting to get a vague idea for a starting point ;)

Cincinnati, Ohio
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3. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Including airfare and Inca trail the trip can costs as much as $4000 or as low as $1700 a person. I'd say you'd have a very good trip if you spent around $2500 or leass each...

Saint Louis...
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4. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Thanks! We had budged around $7000 US for the trip. But again, I'm still in early planning stages so things are subject to change.

And actually, we're looking at going from Aug 16 - 31 '08 as that would allow us to leave Saturday, and come home on Sunday, still with Monday off to recover(Sept 1 is labor day in US!). That gives us a full 2 weeks in Peru. So I may have time to squeeze something else in (rain forest/Lake Titicaca after Cuzco). The vague itinerary I posted above puts us only through Tuesday of the second week. What's a realistic plan for the next 4 days (Wed - Sat before flying home from Lima on Sunday??)

Thanks in advance for all of your suggestions! (And for the great advice already received above!)

Fort Worth, Texas
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5. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

I've been planning our family trip for about a two months. It's been a lot of work but it's also very exciting to get a feel for the county before you go. It sounds like you have a great start. I have used Frommers Peru guide and this site for the majority of the planning. We have basically the same sites picked to visit but we are also going to the rain forest. I think two people can travel quite well for $7000.00 in Peru. Good luck and just check the forum every few days. You'll pick up some great advice and ideas.

Yorktown, Virginia
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6. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Yes, I think $7000 will be more than adequate, unless you stay at luxury hotels all the way. We even spent 2 days at a luxury hotel, the Inkaterra Machu Picchu, & did not spend anything near $7000 for our 16 days in Peru this fall.

I planned & booked our entire trip myself, based mainly on the great info found on this forum. I did read back in "history" on the forum. Checked out books from the library -- Frommers, Fodors, Insight guides, etc., to get more ideas of what I was doing. You don't need travel agents for your trip.

Even your flights to Peru -- you can often find great deals if you look hard enough. I ended up with roundtrip flights for $475/ including taxes, on Lan/AA. Orbitz was cheaper than airline websites.

Saint Louis...
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7. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Were your flights special rates? Right now, the cheapest flights I can find from here to Lima are $800-$1000 apiece on Orbitz. I haven't looked anywhere else.

Also, just curious, if we plan to spend the first 3 days in SV, should we fly into Cuzco or Lima? Where is it easiest to get to SV from? (Sorry my geography of Peru is nonexistent!)

Thanks again!

Cincinnati, Ohio
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8. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

All International flights must land in Lima; flights can be anywhere between 700-1100; just depends on which airport you fly out of. If you fly American airlines there's discount codes that you might be able to save with.

Saint Louis...
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9. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

Thanks yeeman! Should we plan to try to get to SV from Lima or fly from Lima to Cuzco, then taxi to SV? What's easiest?? It looks like all of the flights into Lima from here get in late at night (Like 11pm), so either way, we would probably be spending the night at the Lima airport. Which do you think would be cheapest/easiest??

Thanks again for everyone's great help!

Saint Louis...
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10. Re: My Trip to MP - Getting Started!

PS - where do we get these discount codes out of curiosity (: