Choosing a Tour Operator for the Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Seventeen Questions to Get Answered before Choosing a Tour Operator for the Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

  1. Is the Company a fully licensed tour operator for the Inca Trail including their guides?
  2. Does the tour operator actually do the services you are contracting them to provide or do they farm you off to another 3rd party to provide the service for you.
  3. Does the company participate in trip advisor? How are their reviews?
  4. Does the tour operator fully guarantee 100% the quality of all of the services they will provide?
  5. What is the minimum persons required to book for example 2 persons and is it guaranteed that you will trek even if no more persons join the group.
  6. What is the maximum amount of persons allowed to join the trek or tour? The quality of a trek or tour changes based on group size.  If it is a large group of 10 or more persons how many guides will there be?
  7. If you book and make your deposit is it guaranteed you will trek or will your booking be cancelled if they do not get a sufficiently large enough group?
  8. What is included and what is not included? Are there hidden costs or additional costs that are not included such as entrances, transfers etc.
  9. Are all of their guides University trained with 5 year degrees in tourism and do they speak fluent English? Also are they trained in all aspects of guiding including being “First Aid trained” by medical doctors?
  10. Does the tour operator have satellite phones, and carry first aid supplies and oxygen tanks on all of their treks to protect their trekkers.
  11. What is the quality of food provided, is it fresh cooked food of high quality of just a dry sandwich and fruit.
  12. What type of accommodations are provided? Is it a hostel or an actual hotel?
  13. What time are the train connections? Are they train times that get you back to Cusco at a reasonable hour or are they very late or early times that are less expensive for the tour operator.
  14. How are transfers done? Are all transfers included? Are you picked up from your hotel? Are the transfers in a modern tourist van with private chauffeurs of the company or is it mass transportation, such as a large bus.
  15. Do they pick you up at the airport and transfer you to your hotel for free, no added cost.
  16. Does the tour operator provide all of their guides a true living wage? Do they provide them with uniforms at no charge and do they care for their needs.
  17. Does the tour operator work hard to protect the environment, do social projects for local people in need and work to make tourism sustainable in their local region?