DCD's trip to Peru: what a beautiful country

Old Aug 30th, 2011, 08:03 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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Thanks for the info DCD. We have zipoffs & layers so that helps to know. We're going to do a climb here in Idaho in the Trinities which is around 10,000ft to get use of the altitude. Percy did get back to me but didn't answer most of my questions. He mentions booking our rooms but the fees he quoted didn't include the rooms. Airfare is still too high to book so trying to be patient. We plan to spend a week in Fort Lauderdale before flying to Lima so will have to pack for 2 climates.
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Old Sep 7th, 2011, 05:33 AM
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Hi dcd,
I enjoyed your trip report and wanted to give another plug for Percy. My sister and I (late 30's) used him in 2010 and posted a trip report. I also shared your trepidation about booking this random guide who happened to be a guy in his forties. In fact, we didn't send a picture in case we had to run from him at the Cusco airport. However, we had no worries. Percy was kind, fun, and gave us an amazing experience. I bombarded him with questions and also taught him some American slang. Percy was the first private guide we've used in our travels and the bar has been set high. I'm going to Thailand this year and I'm alreading searching for the "Thai Percy." I hope to return to Peru someday and see Percy again. He is a very special person as well as a great ambassador for his country and culture.
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Old Sep 13th, 2011, 07:57 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
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Planning a trip to Peru in 2013 - en route to yearly stay in Buenos Aires. Your Trip Report, dcd, and other posters on this thread, have been very helpful in beginning to formulate the trip.

Chats with yestravel have stimulated our interest - and your report has clinched the idea of using a guide.

Many thanks for the interesting and useful detail and DW's nice photos.
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Old Dec 7th, 2012, 06:42 AM
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I finally got around to sorting through all my pics. It was great to relive this fabulous trip. For what it's worth, here they are:

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Old Dec 19th, 2012, 07:01 PM
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Thanks for sharing your photos. Looks wonderful!
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 10:57 AM
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I contacted Percy some months ago and tried to contact him again last week since we have finalized our trip. I haven't heard back from him-- is this normal? Our trip isn't until July, but I am wondering if I should find someone else.

I ended up booking all of our hotels myself and am wondering if this is why I haven't heard from him. Will he act as a guide if he isn't involved in booking the hotels?
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 01:00 PM
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I suggest you Google "Percy Salas Peru guide" for an updated e-mail address.
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Old Apr 24th, 2013, 08:03 PM
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During our planning, he could be hard to get a hold of, too, because he was with tour groups. He works by himself primarily. He would reply eventually. As I recall, I booked him well in advance of our trip.

As for the hotels, he will be your guide regardless of whether you book through him. I don't think that is an issue at all. I booked some of mine, as I recall (need to re-read my report, lol).

If you don't have a guide at this point, I'd want to make sure someone good is still available. I'd contact several to see who is available and their fees. In the interim, if you hear back from Percy, and if he's available, you can compare and select the one who's best for you.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 08:14 PM
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So you basically pay to Percy to show you around the city also he booked for you the best hostels and he also tell you where to eat, is that right? And the fee was $1280 ?
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Old May 4th, 2013, 10:28 PM
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luis31, if you are asking me your question, you have the fee right; however, we stayed in nice hotels, not hostels; he drove and guided us everywhere except to MP (can't drive to MP); he made suggestions at some places where to eat, and on some occasions, he joined us.
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Old May 5th, 2013, 08:19 AM
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dcd, I contacted him most recently on 4/17 and then sent a follow up email on 5/2 and haven't heard a word. I am sure the email address is correct as I communicated with him in February while we were in the planning stages. Did it ever take 18 days to hear back from him? I am wondering if he is already committed during the time period we will be there... I did ask him to let me know if this were the case and to suggest another guide... but no word.
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Old May 5th, 2013, 08:58 AM
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We have been in contact with Percy recently. He will be our guide in mid May and he also arranged a MP guide for us. (Booked the rest of our trip on our own.) He has never taken more than 2-3 days to respond - Perhaps your emails are going into his spam. You could try calling him. His phone number appears in his email signature.

dcd - Just looked at your photos - phenomenal.
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Old May 5th, 2013, 11:49 AM
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jeanned, I honestly don't recall the longest I went without hearing back from him. In my report I mentioned often going several weeks. That is my one criticism of him. I do know I booked him early on, so I wasn't overly concerned with the gaps. Not sure what to suggest for you other than to look for another guide as Plan B in case you don't hear back from him soon.

crosscheck, have fun with Percy. He's a great guy. Very considerate and accommodating. Despite the good reviews here, we were nervous about using him only because we were spending several days with him. But we thoroughly enjoyed his company. He really made our trip.

I love peppering local guides with all kinds of questions to get an understanding of their culture, customs, school systems, politics, drug problems, etc, etc, and he answered every one and seemed to enjoy the interaction. We learned so much.

For instance, I didn't know that it was against the law in Peru if you didn't vote in the city where you live. Well, his daughter was away in college (in Lima, I think) during one election cycle, and she had to decide whether to incur the cost to fly home to vote because she couldn't vote in Lima. (He may have said there was a way for her to have voted there but she missed a deadline, or something like that.)

The thing that had me most concerned about him was whether he'd meet us at the airport, having paid him some of the money up front! Plus he doesn't have a website, so there was lots of trust involved in hiring him.

Also, if we were delayed getting in, not an uncommon occurrence, or if he were delayed getting to the airport, I wasn't sure I'd be able to contact him upon our arrival because we didn't have a cell phone. But everything worked out exactly as planned. (If I absolutely needed to call him when we got to Cusco, I figured I'd be able to charm a local into letting me use their cell phone.)

For MP, he hired Esmeralda for us, and she was good. Everything went smoothly there, too.

Glad you liked the photos. I shot about 12x as many as are in the gallery, so culling them down was a challenge. We had a fabulous trip, thanks in large part to Percy, and I think the pics reflect that.

Please tell him Dave and Joyce say "hello". I sent Percy a link to the pics, too, which might help him remember who we are.

Have a great trip!
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Old May 5th, 2013, 12:21 PM
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jeanned (and others who may be using Percy in the future), one thing I haven't mentioned is not to exact a big ol' fancy car with him, at least that wasn't our experience 2 years ago. Cars are small there anyway, and his was "seasoned". For his larger groups, I suspect he hires an appropriate van, but you may want to inquire if that's important to you.
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Old May 5th, 2013, 07:51 PM
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dcd, we still have a couple of months until our trip, but this is the only thing that is not yet planned so I am feeling a bit nervous about it. If it doesn't pan out and we don't find another guide, we will just wing it and plan once we are there or via the hotels. I am just surprised not to have heard back from him as he was so responsive in our initial conversations in January/February. Even if he is already booked, I would love to know this so I can move on.

crosscheck, I just checked all of my email correspondence with him and none of them contain a phone #. Could you post it?

dcd & crosscheck, I have been using this email address: [email protected]. Is this the same one that you have used?

dcd, He had told us we would have a van since we are a family of five so he may own a larger vehicle now or perhaps was going to rent one for this purpose.
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Old May 5th, 2013, 09:22 PM
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jeanne, Yes, that's the email address I've been using. Here's the mobile: +51-984-621152. It also appears at the top of this thread. If you haven't heard from Percy by the time we see him, I will gently remind him to get back to you.

dcd, I am in awe of your photography skills, got me in the mood for our trip. Will send saludos to Percy. We're not concerned about whether he will show up because we are only using him for one day and did not have to wire money (booked everything else on our own). Our friends used him as a guide, so we also have a Real Life recommendation - they sung his praises and said he's very trustworthy. And because there are four of us, we will be in a van. I will probably bombard him with Qs as well, while the rest of the family looks on in embarrassment.

Will report back. Our trip is sadly very short - just a week (SV/MP/Cusco) to celebrate our son's college graduation. First time for the whole family, but I spent a month in Peru in the eighties and I'm worried that I will find it overdeveloped.
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Old May 6th, 2013, 07:38 PM
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crosscheck thank you so much for the number!! I will call him tomorrow.

Enjoy your trip. I look forward to hearing about it.
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