Traveling Safely in Peruvian Cities

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Traveling in Lima and other Peruvian Cities

Friendly Lima, Peru

Friendly Lima, Peru

The below commentaries come from entries on virtualtourist.com, which I thought was useful information that mirrors my own perspective of traveling in Lima. I remember my boss, Willie Prittie of Alpine Ascents International cursing Lima for the time he lost a bags of climbing gear at the Airport, when it was stolen from him.  From his horror story, I came to Peru armed to the hilt with mace, chicken wire around my backpack and yes, even a machete. I was traveling south on the Pan American Highway and was still a little uneducated about travel in South America. Within minutes of entering Peru, and catching a ride I realized I could throw away all the armaments. I’ve been in love with Peru ever since.
Hints on Traveling in Lima
Of course, no crime is petty when it happens to you, so take precautions against pickpockets and outright theft. Use your hotel room safe and carry your valuables in a money belt, with a decoy wallet containing a few soles for small transactions and to satisfy the armed robber. Don’t go out in the city center at night and, in general, don’t go out alone at night.
Even in the nicest neighborhoods, like Miraflores in Lima, people live behind bars, barbed wire and electric fence. Glass recycling in Peru means turning bottles into shards that can be implanted on the tops of cement walls. With a vast gulf between the rich and poor, Lima will always be plagued by crime.
All that said, we never had any problems. Check the embassy web sites for guidance on the latest scams.

Comment by, AKTravelers at Virtualtourist.com

Finding a taxi:
Finding a taxi in Lima is easy, but it should also be safe, right? Therefore I would recommend you to follow my guidelines below

1. The best is to book a taxi through the hotel reception. Usually the hotels have their own taxi or an agreement with a taxi driver or taxi-company.
2. If this is not possible and you are on the street, try to find a registered taxi.
3. No registered taxi? There will be many cars with a taxi sticker in the window, or maybe no taxi-signs at all. Though they will let you know they are a taxi using their horn when they pass you. The best advice if you want to use an unregistered taxi is to look at the driver. Does he look like an honest man, or a person who would drive you into a dark alley and rob you? Common sense in other words.

How much to pay:
It is cheap to travel with taxis in Lima. And to bargain on the price is also possible. From the airport to city center, a price on 10-15 soles would be reasonable. However you can easily be charged 50 soles 😉

General advice:
1. ALWAYS agree on the price in advance. Tell your destination, get an offer, bargain if not satisfied with the offer and take the taxi if you can agree on the price.
2. When you are inside. Lock the door and close the window. Don’t buy anything from the street sellers.
3. Valuables are probably more safe in the trunk than inside the car in case you should be so unlucky to be robbed.
I must add that I never had any problems or felt unsafe travelling with taxis in Lima, but taking precautions doesn’t harm.
Have a nice ride!
Comment by Nenzo at Virtualtourist.com

Travel Tips in Lima

You constantly hear all this chatter about the dangers present in Lima. Although I cannot guarantee all travelers to be 100% SAFE all the time (like I was), I can tell you that your visit to Lima does not have to end up traumatic with a few commonsense precautions:
*Put valuable documents (passport, driver’s license), credit cards, and cash in your money belt all the time
*Use bags/purses for all other needed items (e.g., sunglass, lip balm, kleenex, etc.). You can hand this “worthless/decoy” bag/wallet/purse in a robbery (God forbid!).
*Do not wear any jewelry or expensive watches (you’re just inviting trouble)
*Upon arrival or departure–make sure that all your luggage/belongings are safely in the trunk of the car/taxi and also that any bag/purse you have with you must be put under the seat of the car because I was warned by my driver that there have been incidences of general theft of tourists and locals a few miles around the airport area.
Otherwise, Lima is like any other city (New York, etc.) with its share of crime infused with its urban setting. Do enjoy your trip to the wonderful city of Lima!!!

Comment by Risse73 Virtualtourist.com

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