The Latest on COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Peru
Updated Sept. 18th 2020-International flights for October 15th & Peru Makes Moves to Reactivate Domestic Tourism
While nothing is official the Peruvian government continues to claim that international flights will start running on October 15th. In an encouraging move, the Minister of Tourism has put into motion the reactivation of domestic tourism to help stimulate the economy. They are starting with the promotion of the departments of Lambayeque, Loreto, Piura, Tumbes and Ucayli, focusing on full-day outdoor activities.
The Ministry of Foreign Trade & Tourism in Peru has also announced they will be taking the next steps to start the Choquequirao Archeological Park, which will bring in around 10,000 to 1,000,000 a year, to a site that currently sees around 2,500 visitors a year, click here to see a brief film we made on our stance of this project.
The citadel of Machu Picchu can not receive tourists because they do not have a good health service, or a plan for the resumption of activities, said the mayor of the district, Darwin Baca. He pointed out that the town lacks a good health center and a contingency plan to evacuate tourists in the case of an emergency in the midst of a pandemic. The mayor explained that this is necessary for the reopening of Machu Picchu and until a plan is formed they can’t set a reopening date. The mayor further stated that the delay occurs due to a lack of commitment from the regional government and the state.
Updated Sept. 11th 2020-International Flights for October & Continued State of Emergency
Not much has changed as Peru still remains in a state of emergency with a mandatory shut-in for Sundays and curfews throughout the country. Children are still prohibited from being outside per the law as the rates of Covid-19 infection among children continues to rise. The medical systems are still overwhelmed; however, ICU beds are slowly starting to open up again.
The government announced they are still aiming to start up international flights in October, however, an official date has not been set, as the opening of flights depends on the number of cases and the country’s ability to contain the virus. As many foreigners continue to be trapped in Peru and many Peruvians are trying to repatriate back to their country, repatriation flights will be given priority upon the reinstatement of international flights.
The government is working to reinitiate national tourism as businesses have started submitting their security protocols for approval with the local government. Government officials are currently doing hotel inspections to ensure all protocols are being followed.
Tour guides have not had work since last March and many have been doing any and all odd jobs, they can to survive the year without employment. Unfortunately, all financial aid given by the government was only given to businesses, and as official Tours Guides are independent contractors, they were not eligible for any government aid, grants or subsidies.
Updated Sept. 3rd 2020-Minister of Travel gives an official start date for International Flights
Despite the fact that Covid-19 cases continue to rise and the State of Emergency has been extended until September 30 the Ministry of Transportation announced yesterday that international flights will be set to open October 1st, 2020.
Currently this is what we know:
- Thousands of foreigners are still stuck in Peru and thousands of Peruvians are stuck in other countries waiting to return to their home country after being effected economically by The Pandemic. The Minister of Transportation stated that the first international flights permitted to operate starting October 1st will be for;
- Work reasons. For international companies that depend on the fly-in and fly-out model such as mining, etc.
- Humanitarian reasons. Specifically to repatriate foreigners back to their home countries and to repatriate Peruvians back to Peru.
- Health reasons. For people seeking medical treatment that they can no longer receive in Peru due to The Pandemic.
- Tourists will not be permitted to start traveling into Peru until all the aforementioned priority travelers have been sorted.
- Upon arrival to Peru’s international airport, Covid-19 tests will be administered to each traveler. It’s still not clear if there will be a mandatory quarantine period upon arrival.
- The minister stated that they will implement their new security protocols for international arrivals to help identify any weaknesses in the execution and effectiveness of the state’s protocols. Once everything seems secure Peru can move forward in reopening its borders for tourism.
Details for the extended State of Emergency is as follows:
- On August 28th the government passed a new law for the extended State of Emergency that prohibits children from being outside of their home. The prior law permitted children to be outside for up to 30 minutes a day, no further than 500 meters from their homes. Exceptions are made for medical emergencies and doctor appointments.
- Citizens of Peru are still locked inside their homes from 4am Sunday morning until 4am Monday morning, anyone caught outside will have to pay a fine of over 6,000 soles, or just under $USD 2,000.
- Curfews are still in effect all over Peru, the hours vary depending on the province and the number of cases.
Stay tuned for daily changes as it unfolds.
Updated August 28th-The State of Emergency has been extended to September 30th.
Covid-19 cases are rising to a crescendo, beating out the daily numbers from the first wave of cases last May and topping out at more than 9,500 cases. The continuing increase in Covid cases and the illegal openings of discotecas in Lima which have further propagated the virus in the capital city have prompted the government to extend the “State of Emergency” until September 30th. For tourism this means the following:
- Cusco is still under a strict quarantine and national flights will continue to be grounded. There’s a curfew and a shut-in every Sunday, which means nobody is permitted to leave their homes except in the case of an emergency.
- The Minister of Transport and Communications has recently announced that International flights will continue to remain closed during Phase 4 “The Reactivation of the Economy” and only travel for healthy, study or work purposes will be allowed. As there are still many foreigners still waiting on flights in Peru, everyone is hoping the government will follow through with their commitment of allowing more humanitarian flights repatriate their citizens to their home countries.
- Machu Picchu has still not been assigned a tentative opening date, and will not be assigned one until the number of Covid-19 cases begin to decline in the area.
- Children under the age of 14 are prohibited from leaving their homes due to an increase of children testing positive for Covid-19.
Other than the extension of the State of Emergency things still remain somewhat static. We are all locked-in our homes waiting for everything to pass.
Updated August 21-More security protocols are published and international flights pushed back again.
Not too much movement as far as restrictions but little by little we are getting more information from the new set of ministers and the president. Here are the basics that directly impact tourism:
- The Cusco area remains under quarantine as the number of cases continue to rise. National flights to the Cusco area remain cancelled until the number of reported cases and the occupancy of hospital beds begin to decline.
- The Minister of Transport and Communications has recently announced that International flights will continue to remain closed during Phase 4 “The Reactivation of the Economy” and only travel for healthy, study or work purposes will be allowed. This pushes international flights to 2021, but as we’ve seen this could change.
- The government has officially released the new “Safety Protocols” for the Adventure Sport industry in the Tourism sector so that operators can begin operating their adventure sport outings again.
- Machu Picchu has still not been assigned a tentative opening date, and will not be assigned one until the number of Covid-19 cases begin to decline in the area.
Changes since the last report
With the second wave of Covid-19 cases people are feeling tired and the enthusiasm for the reactivation of the economy has waned as people begin to realize that this isn’t going away anytime soon. Peru continues to have a high report of Covid-19 cases with a majority of cases still in Lima. As a response the government has mandated a 24-hour country-wide “shut-in” every Sunday. This means anyone caught outside of their home on Sundays will be arrested and heavily fined.
While people can now drive private vehicles, shop for groceries, go to restaurants, and exercise in the open there’s still a general feeling of staying inside as resources for treatment continue to remain scarce. Traveling from Lima to other provinces proves to be challenging and crossing provincial borders requires an affidavit given with negative Covid-19 test.
In the beginning of the pandemic Peru had only 2,000 hospitals and now Peru has just under 20,000 hospital beds. Despite the increase of beds and equipment, hospitals continue to collapse. Currently there are only 117 ICU beds open with ventilators in the entire nation, with only 17 of the 117 representing open beds in Lima. The government is continuing to bring in resources, however it’s not enough. Medical professionals are threatening to protest until they get the resources necessary to treat patients and protect themselves.
Updated August 12th-Cusco shut down for Quarantine, including cancellation of all national flights, and International flights are delayed again.
There hasn’t been a lot of news lately so here’s a quick recap of the last couple of weeks and reason’s why there has been so little movement:
- International flights will not be permitted into Peru until the end of 2020 or the beginning of 2021.
- Cusco is now officially under quarantine, which means a curfew from 8pm to 4am and a 24 hour lock-down on Sundays. All national flights to Cusco have been cancelled except LATAM which has been approved for chartered flights only.
- The re-opening of Machu Picchu has been delayed indefinitely. Once Covid-19 cases decline the tourism boards will reconvene to determine a tentative reopening date.
- As Covid-19 cases continue to rise Peru has extended their State of Emergency until August 31st with a mandatory shut-in for all citizens on Sundays.
- Children of 14 years of age and younger are prohibited from entering commercial centers or stray further than 500 meters from their homes as are citizens of 65 years of age and older.
- The President has offered another stimulus package for small businesses in the tourism sector to help keep them solvent for the reactivation of tourism.
- The President has recently fired all of his ministers except one and his choice for Prime Minister was not approved by the Congress. A new Prime Minister has been suggested and has yet to secure approval from the Congress.
As a result of the recent turnover in government there has been many delays in action and follow through with policies. Some government officials are suggesting to return to a stricter lock-down whereas other government officials are keen to keep the economy reactivated and move forward. We are all waiting for the smoke to clear so we can see how to proceed. We will continue to keep you informed as the news rolls in.
Updated July 30th-Peru celebrates 199 years of independence, President Announces Reactivation plan & Machu Picchu Remains Closed
On July 28th Peru celebrated its 199 year of independence. President Vizcarra took the opportunity to announce a major reactivation plan to the tourism sector. The tourism sector of Peru ranks 3 in overall contribution to the State’s GDP and has been hit the hardest with the state shut-down. The idea of the plan is to create the support needed to ensure that we are all still here when tourists return, and you will find us even better than before.
The major points of the reactivation plan are as follows:
- The government has created a fund of 2 billion soles to keep small business afloat related to the tourism sector. This includes: restaurants, tour agencies, transport companies, tour guides, artesanias, tour guides, lodging, and inter-provincial transportation.
- 142 million soles is being allocated to 8 major projects to improve tourism infrastructure in the provinces of: Amazonas, Arequipa, Ica, La Libertad, Lima and Puno. The projects will help boost access to popular sites and create jobs for the currently unemployed.
- Promotion and strategic marketing on artesanal crafts to keep the industry alive while the country is shut down.
- Strategic alliance with six international airlines to help carry promotional campaigns and reposition Peru in the international travel arena.
Despite the intent to reactivate the sector international fights into Cusco will now be delayed until the end of the year or the beginning of 2021. To compound this blow Covid-19 numbers have continued to climb, which has led to a state mandated quarantine and has shutdown all national flights to Cusco until August 31st, which will be extended if the cases continue to climb and the medical systems continue to overwhelmed.
Regarding the reopening of Machu Picchu, the local tourism committees have decided to delay the reopening of Machu Picchu. Currently the number of Covid cases continue to rise in the area and a fixed date will not be set until the cases are managed. The hope is that once the rate of Covid-19 plateau’s they can reconvene and set a fixed date.
The districts of Arequipa, Ica, Ancash, Junin, Cajamarca, Madre de Dios, San Martin, Cusco (only the provinces of La Convencion & Cusco) and Huanuco, are in an extended quarantine and all travel to these regions are restricted until the quarantine is lifted. The quarantined provinces have a curfew from 8pm-4am as well as an all day Sunday curfew. Lima still has the highest number of cases in the country.
Updated July 23rd-President fires most of it’s cabinet, Arequipa receives aid and more.
Last week the president replaced thirteen council members including the First Minister of Peru in hopes of building more effective strategies against the pandemic. This has created some delays in legislation for reopening various sectors of tourism as prior legislation is reviewed by the new members so they can start safely and effectively manage the reopening of the country.
Arequipa region continues to get hit hard with Covid-19 cases compounded by shortages of medicine, beds, doctors and protective equipment. The government of Peru made an emergency decree to allow the Ministry of Health to take over and get the region back on it’s feet. So far over 46 tons of protective gear and medical supplies have been sent and as of yesterday 70 more doctors have arrived to advise in treatment patients and bio-security within hospitals affected by Covid-19.
Last Monday restaurants have been allowed to open at 40% capacity. Combi’s (micro-buses) and buses are allowed to seat at 100% capacity, however masks and face shields are both required, fines will be given for non-compliance.
The reopening of Machu Picchu on July 24th is delayed as businesses are still finalizing the mandated protocols to help stop the spread, however they are still trying open the site by the end of the month. In a gesture to help with tourism Machu Picchu no longer has entrance fee’s for children, senior citizens, or public service works, for both national and international visitors.
Updated July 16th-National flights are running and international border opening announced.
As of yesterday both inter provincial buses and national flights have begun in an attempt to reactivate the tourism sector in Peru. National fights are running about 30% of their pre-Covid numbers, to ensure each flight is meeting all protocols.
Only travelers are allowed to enter the airport to limit outside exposure. Airlines are asking for everyone to check-in electronically and to arrive to the airport 3 hours in advance due long queues. Masks are mandatory to enter the airport, mask-shields are mandatory to fly and nobody can board without an affidavit of health. Airlines are passing out gloves to passengers to wear inside the cabins. All airlines appear to be using the same “affidavit of health”, which can be downloaded directly from the airlines websites. Temperatures are taken upon entering the airport and upon boarding flights. All airplane cabins are equipped with HEPA filters, known to kill up to 99.96% of viruses and bacteria. Cabin crew are instructed to clean the aircraft’s bathrooms every 15 minutes. Currently they are filling the planes at 100% capacity.
Machu Picchu was set to open July 24th to national travelers, however the opening has been pushed back as local communities and operators need more time to meet the sanctioned safety protocols. Upon opening Machu Picchu to the public only 675 visitors are permitted per day to allow social distancing while exploring the ruins.
Peru’s Ministry of Transport & Communications has approved international regional flights direct between Bolivia, Colombia, Chile to Cusco. The regional flights are set to be activated in September and October assuming no spike in Covid cases. Currently Peru has 98,907 active cases, over half of these cases are in Lima.
Updated 08th July – Provisional date for internal flights announced
On Monday 6th of July, a meeting hosted by DIRCETUR, the regional governing body for tourism in Cusco was held in which the following was announced:
LATAM currently are the only airline who have presented their license for reopening. They are hoping to start some internal flights from the 15th of July.
Both Lima and Cusco airports have submitted their Covid19 operating plans and confirm they are ready to receive passengers. There will be staggered flights, roughly 1 an hour, only people flying will be allowed into the airport terminal and masks will be obligatory. No tickets can be purchased at the airport and online checks in are requested. Hand washing facilites will be available both inside and outside the airport.
The inter-provincial bus station has also announced it is ready to open on the 15th of July, if allowed.
Perurail and Incarail are also hoping to start running limited tourist services to and from Machu Picchu, again from the 15th of July, if permitted and have all protocols in place to run safe train journeys.
The Ministry of Tourism has issued protocols on the re-opening of tourist agencies, hotels and new best guiding practices. Amazonas Explorer has applied for our license to re start operations and are awaiting on confirmation, hopefully in the next day or two. We continue to work from home and staying safe.
Sernamp has issued new protocols on opening up the One Day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu This includes reduced group size – 6 trekkers per guide plus one porter/ assistant, maximum 120 total per day, groups to keep apart, no cooking meals allowed en route (box lunch permitted)
We will keep you updated as we hear more.
Updated 30th June – Exit strategy – Phase 3 Starts 01 July
State of Emergency extended until 31 of July.
On June the 27th, President Martin Vizcarra announced that the state of emergency would be extended to the 31st of July but that the gradual re-opening of Peru would progress with caution.
As of the 29th of June, according to the Ministry of health there have been 9,504 Covid related deaths in Peru. This is just 3.36% of 282,365 confirmed positive cases. Different areas of Peru have been affected quite dramatically. For example, Lima has had 157,050 cases and the next runner up is Callao next door with 17, 944 whereas Cusco region has just 1,175 cases, and only 19 deaths. The main Covid19 clusters are centred on the coastal and jungle regions of Peru, not the Andean regions. The theory is the stronger UV rays, the high altitude or people in the mountains having stronger lungs means the virus is not as effective in the Andes (or it could be that these regions obeyed the quarantine laws more strictly). Peru is testing between 15 and 20 thousand people a day.
Changes since we last wrote:
Quarantine in Arequipa, Ica, Junín, Huánuco, San Martin, Madre de Dios and Áncash have no change in timetable. In the rest of Peru, quarantine measures have lifted for all but under 14 year olds, high risk people & Over 65 year olds. Under 14s are allowed to exercise within 500m of their house for up to an hour a day. Where as over 65s are advised not to leave the house unless absolutely essential.
Elsewhere, for example, in Cusco, life is starting to resemble a new socially distant normal. Masks and social distancing of anywhere between 1 and 2 metres is the norm. Banks, supermarkets, etc are limited to 50% capacity and disinfection. Shopping malls are open but with limited capacity. As of 01 July, restaurants that comply with the correct sanitary protocols can open at 40% capacity. They are also setting up delivery services. Construction work has been allowed to resume with infection preventative measures in place. In Cusco, buses are running at 50% capacity. Even a few hairdressers have opened, given that they all have masks and not too crowded. The police and armed forces are authorised to enforce all the above social distancing measures.
Except for the regions mentioned above, stay at home Sunday is no longer compulsory. But gatherings of big groups including religious services are still prohibited.
Fears over hospital shortages have been addressed with the number of hospital beds now up to 14,000 and ventilators up to 2,000 within the next couple of weeks. They are also working with private hospitals to keep the price of treatment affordable to Peruvians.
Can I travel to Peru? Is Peru open for tourism?
All international borders into and out of Peru are closed, save for humanitarian reasons. Cargo flights and ports have been allowed to reopen for exporting goods. Importing products to Peru, is still primarily only for necessities and medical equipment, but businesses can now start to apply for licences to move cargo in and out of Peru.
Machu Picchu was scheduled to open on 01 July but that has been put off until better protocols are in place. No date has been set for it reopening.
The Inca Trail is currently closed but the One day KM 104 Royal Inca Trail is scheduled to open with reduced numbers as and when Machu Picchu opens.
Internal flights and inter-regional bus travel is scheduled to open some time in the first two weeks of July but there is currently no date set for International flights to start operating. The Peruvian government is in touch with other countries to look at opening up flights. There has been talk of the first “corridors” being Cusco – Bogota, Cusco – Santiago and Cusco – La Paz.
Perurail has announced it is ready to start transporting people to Machu Picchu and has put in place all protocols to safely transport passengers. Its license to operate has been approved, they are just waiting for Machu Picchu to open.
Rainbow Mountain remains closed to all visits.
We will endeavour to keep this blog updated more regularly from now on. In the meantime, please stay safe, stay at home and we hope to see you all soon. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated 15th June – Machu Picchu to open on 01 July
Machu Picchu to open on 01 July
Here’s what we know…
The Tourism Agency Association of Cusco(Asociación de Agencias de Turismo del Cusco- AATC) has given us an insight into how Machu Picchu will operate when it opens again on the 1st of July. These rules still need to be approved by the Ministry of Health before the 20th of June.
You can see more on their Facebook page HERE
To summarise the proposal are:
- The trains and buses will run at 50% capacity. So only 16 people in a 32 seater bus.
- You cannot enter Machu Picchu without a guide under normal circumstances. But there will now be a cap of 7 tourists per guide.
- Masks will have to be worn on the buses and trains. And some sources seem to suggest whilst in the park too (they are really badly worded articles).
- Groups must maintain a distance of 20m from other groups
- Machu Picchu will have 2 circuits (Some sources say 4), using a one way system. Routes are not yet published but there will be a long one and a short one. These will take anywhere between an hour and 20 minutes and two hours. Your ticket used to last 4 hours but visit will now be limited. You may also have to wait for groups to pass at a safe distance before being allowed to continue. The temple of the sun will remain closed.
- There will be only 75 people allowed to enter Machu Picchu per hour. Assuming that is 6am-5pm as it has been previously that is only 770 people a day, down from about 5,000.
- To boost tourism, the site will be free for Peruvian key workers, children and Over 65s. One article says this may be extended to all visitors when the international borders open again. but this is not confirmed.
- All these regulations will be explained at the entrance to the site.
- The 4 Day Inca trail remains closed for the time being but the KM 104 Royal Inca trail will also be open from 01 July but with a limit of just 120 passengers per day and a reduced group size of 1 guide to every 6 tourists.
It is still unclear what the new costs of these will be or if prices are expected to stay the same…
The Machu Picchu official website is currently under maintenance, hopefully updating on the new rules.
We will keep you updated when we know more.
AATC Facebook page
Updated 9th June – Exit strategy now in Phase 2
State of Sanitary Emergency extended until 7 September.
As of June 9th,2020, 203,736 people have tested positive for Covid 19 in Peru. Of these, 92,929 people have successfully isolated and recovered from Coronavirus. 9,903 people are currently in hospital and 1,077 in ICU or on a ventilator. There have also been 5,738 deaths.
Lima is the highest infected region by far with 120,183 cases. Compared with neighbouring Callao at 14,284 the second highest, Cusco only has 1,274 and Apurimac just 295. For more details please visit the MINSA webpage where they report daily.
Politically there are three main policies all working together…
1: State of Emergency:
Peru declared a State of Emergency on the 15th of March. It was extended again and again, and is currently expected to last until the 30th of June.
Peru has now entered Phase two of the Covid exit strategy in most of Peru. Tumbes, Piura, Lambayeque, La Libertad, Loreto, Ucayali and parts of Ica and Ancash are to remain in Phase one. They are only allowed to leave the house on essential journeys such as buying food and can begin home deliveries for certain businesses.
Under the State of Emergency, the constitutional rights related to personal freedom and security, the inviolability of the home and the freedom of assembly and movement in national territory are restricted.
Actually called “Mandatory Social Distancing” by the Peruvian government, allows them to impose curfews as they have been doing throughout the State of Emergency.
3: State of Sanitary Emergency:
A State of Sanitary Emergency has been put in place for 90 days starting from the 10th of June until the 7th of September in Peru.
Note this is different from the State of Emergency.
The State of Sanitary Emergency allows the Ministry of Health (MINSA) to quickly acquire goods and services to face the pandemic without the need for public or government approval. It also is there to put plans in place to begin to leave the lockdown. This includes starting up local and internal businesses provided they have protocols in place to minimise the risk of spreading the coronavirus. It also means MINSA will receive help from the police and armed forces to implement any measures they deem appropriate.
Changes in Peru Now
June is usually a major festival season in Peru, all have been cancelled or postponed or put online. It is also the middle of winter and beginning of the yearly influenza pandemic, with new introduced social distancing in place we hope to see a decline in preventable deaths from Pneumonia as well as Covid 19.
Hospitals have been reporting some shortages and even cases of theft of personal protective equipment in places like Arequipa and Piura. Other parts of Peru like Lima are now handing them out on public transport to essential workers around the city.
With Phase two now beginning to take effect, there have been a few regulations lifted or changed:
-Exercise is now permitted between 5am-1pm Mon-Sat. But it must be alone and only to be within 3 km of home. Sunday is still a total lockdown stay at home day.
– Curfew/Quarantine still remains and no one is allowed out between 9pm-4am, and 6pm-4am for those still in phase one.
-Some aquatic activities like surfing or kayaking are allowed with local government permission.
-People are now allowed to drive private cars for essential journeys. But driving for exercise is not permitted.
-Public transport has been able to reopen, and tests are said to be being made available to public workers.
Under the Sanitary State of Emergency:
-Restarting construction work is permitted, given they can practice social distancing or adequate PPE is provided and available.
-Business can begin to operate as normal with the Ministry of Health’s approval and adequate Covid prevention enforced in the workplace. Businesses must submit their plans to MINSA for approval. It is unclear how this will be enforced.
-Legislation has been put in place to ensure treatment for Covid such as Paracetamol, Hydroxychloroquine and Ibuprofen remain at the same price. And hoarding is illegal by placing maximum buys on such medicines.(Please note Amazonas Explorer is not suggesting or advising the medications as above mentioned, just translating government guidance)
Travelling to Peru
Government has placed a 14 day quarantine on anyone entering from Italy, Spain, France and China. Although the list of countries is set to be updated soon, please check the MINSA website and Prevención y Control de Enfermedades(CDC)
However there are currently no commercial flights from anywhere into and out of Peru.
If you then present Covid symptoms, you must contact authorities and they will tell you what to do.
“Toda persona que ingrese al territorio nacional provenientes de países con antecedentes epidemiológicos y que se encuentren en la relación que elabore el Centro de Epidemiología, Prevención y Control de Enfermedades (CDC) del Minsa, tales como la República Italiana, el Reino de España, República Francesa y República Popular de China, debe sujetarse a un periodo de aislamiento domiciliario por 14 días. La lista de países es actualizada por el CDC y publicada en su página web y la del Ministerio de Salud”
En caso presentar sintomatología de infección respiratoria, la persona en aislamiento domiciliario se debe comunicar con la autoridad sanitaria de la jurisdicción correspondiente para la adopción de las medidas necesarias.”
Peru in the media:
On the 29th of May there was footage circulating in Cusco of a digger reportedly creating a mass grave for Co-vid victims. It has been debunked as a morgue getting rid of unclaimed bodies as they are overflowing. Most of which are due to not being able to hold funerals due to the current quarantine. None of the bodies were a” biological hazard” which means none had died of infectious disease. The news channel who covered the story are facing an investigation on charges of inciting panic and fear. https://rpp.pe/peru/cusco/coronavirus-en-peru-cusco-fiscalia-niega-que-existan-entierros-de-cadaveres-con-la-covid-19-en-fosa-comun-noticia-1268893
CNN also produced this somewhat biased “What went wrong in Peru’s virus response?”
Al Jazeera amongst others reported somewhat unfairly on Peru running out of Oxygen to treat Covid-19 patients
In early July / August, Peru is planning to start Phase three of our Exit strategy, changes should include:
- Opening some gyms and allowing groups of organised sport such as Football or Volleyball. Opening of most venues at 50% capacity.
- Return to normal internal business practices.
- Schools will not open again until next year, online learning is expected to continue.
- LATAM has announced starting internal flights in July and International flight as early as August.
Cusco’s Testing and Death toll Statistics
For up to date statistics concerning Covid 19 and Cusco, we suggest:
We will endeavour to keep this blog updated more regularly from now on. In the meantime, please stay safe, stay at home and we hope to see you all soon. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact us at email@example.com
25th May State of Emergency extended to 30th of June
On Friday May the 22nd, President Vizcarra announced plans for the State of Emergency to continue until the 30th of June. The lockdown will also continue in place but with the easing of certain restrictions to allow some economic revival.
As of today, Monday the 25th of May, (Day 71 of the lockdown), Covid19 cases continue to rise in the provinces but seem to have plateaued in Lima, Loreto and much of the North of Peru.
On Saturday 23rd of May, Cusco experienced its largest ever increase of cases and numbers are expected to continue to rise but hopefully a little slower over the coming days.
It is worth mentioning Cusco, where we are based, has just 757 cases (and 8 deaths) which is way lower than Lima (75,716) Piura (4,219) and Arequipa (2,501) to mention just a few of the departments. I hope this puts everything a little into perspective.
We are now entering what is known as Phase 1 of the proposed loosening of lockdown restrictions. In this phase, the main changes are:
1: The curfew has been reduced to 9pm to 4am (except in a few of the worst hit areas where it is still 7pm to 6am)
2: You are now allowed to drive your car to the shops but still only 1 person per family is allowed out to do the shopping
3: Computer Technicians, Plumbers, Electricians, Carpenters, General Maintenance, Dentists, Hair dressers and Beauty care professionals are allowed to operate but only for home visits.
4: Professional sport (but without any supporters present) is allowed to resume.
5: Online shopping for clothing, footwear, electro-domestics, school utensils and office stationary permitted.
6: Children are allowed out to exercise once a day for 30 minutes but only within 500m of their homes.
7: Restaurants with the correct protocols in place can start offering delivery services.
1: Inti Raymi Festival to go online
EMUFEC, the Cusco Municipal Festival Organiser Company, has announced they will stage Inti Raymi on the 24th of June but virtually and are encouraging all Cuzqueños to join in. You can see more at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rf8Q9mBhkyY&feature=youtu.be
2: Domestic flights should resume in August and International Flights in October
The Ministry of Transport and Communications of Peru indicated that domestic air transport should restart during ‘Phase three’ of the Government’s economic recovery plan (July-August).
The international borders would remain closed for a few more months. The restart of air transport (domestic and international) will depend on the results of the two first phases (May-June).
New Peruvian Regulation for Tour Operators and Travel Agencies has been published
Did you know at least 70% of travel operators in Peru are not legally registered? The Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism has published a new regulation for travel agencies with the purpose to guarantee the formality of companies and protect final consumers. To date, there are 5,816 travel agencies registered at the official ‘National Directory of Tourism Service Providers’, 60% of which are concentrated in Lima and Cusco. Amazonas Explorer is one of the few legal operators in Cusco and is proud to have all of its operating licences in order.
Jorge Chavez International Airport is chosen as the best airport in South America
The International Airport Jorge Chavez, located in the capital city of Lima, was recognised once again as the best air terminal in South America, according to the World Airport Awards. The awards, which are the most prestigious for the global airport industry, are based on the results of the ‘World Airport Survey’, carried out between September 2019 and February 2020.
Updated 18th May 2020 – International Borders opening in September?
The daily number of Covid19 infections continues to rise in Peru but would appear to be slowing.
The Peruvian news channel RPP reported on a recent scientific model that claimed Peru should be hitting its peak starting on the 19th of May in Lima and up to the 1st of June in other
regions, depending on their remoteness.
The model also indicates the level of infections should then plateau for roughly 21 days before hopefully falling. But this is dependent on the lockdown continuing.
The lockdown is currently still in place until the 24 th of May.
1: The Ministry of Transport has put back the proposed timetable for opening the inter-provincial bus routes and internal airlines to “sometime between July and August”.
This will be gradually rolled out countrywide depending on which areas are least affected and better capable of dealing with any second wave of infections that may come.
2: The timescale for opening up international borders and airways has also been put back to “Phase 4” – the last phase of the plan to reopen Peru and this is scheduled for “anytime September to October” onwards.
This will also be dependent on reaching mutual agreements with other countries and meeting strict protocols which are currently being worked on.
Both these proposals are “tentative” and not legally binding. They will be revised weekly.
3: Restaurants in Lima are now able to open up offering a delivery / take away service only and only once they have been approved and met very stringent protocols to ensure the correct handling of food and staff social distancing.
11th May 2020 – Quarantine extended to the end of May
On Friday the 8th of May, the President of Peru announced the state of emergency lock-down would remain in place throughout Peru until the 24th of May.
Tourism wise, today the government announced that from 01st July through to the 31st of December 2020, they would be opening national parks, certain museums and archaeological sites to Peruvian children and over 60 year olds for free……… This is their idea of how to re-stimulate tourism!
In other tourism related news, Avianca airlines have announced that they are filing for chapter 11 insolvency in the USA in a bid to restructure itself. As a result Avianca Peru (their subsidiary that runs internal flights within Peru) will cease to exist.
They do still plan to maintain flights into Peru from their main hubs of Bogota and San Salvador and to be up and running as soon as they are allowed.
5th May Proposed phased return to normality after the lockdown
The current lockdown is still in place until the 11th of May.
Yesterday on the 04th of May, the Peruvian government approved the following proposals for easing the current lockdown.
Note this is provisional and at the end of each phase, there will be a complete revision before agreeing to the next phase.
You can see up to date statistics for COVID-19 in Peru here, including by region, sex, and age.
Phase 1: MID TO END OF MAY
There will be a gradual reopening of some industries, some mining and some construction plus the sale of agricultural products and e-commerce. Also opening up are business support firms to do with telecommunication, complimentary to agriculture and storage facilities.
Tourism-wise, restaurants can open for delivery and pick up service, hotels for Covid-19 patients only, tourist transport for essential activities.
Phase 2: JUNE
The re-opening of the paper and printing industry, underground mining, more construction and sanitary projects, limited access to shopping malls, the sale of all agricultural products and import/export for retail purposes.
Tourism-wise, restaurants but with a reduced capacity to open, interprovincial transport and internal air travel to restart, travel agencies to open but only virtually.
Phase 3: JULY
The reopening of all mining, construction sanitation and commerce.
Tourism-wise, restaurants open as normal, international air travel permitted, walk in travel agents re open to public, entertainment centres re opened and tourist sites open to the public but only in limited numbers.
Phase 4: AUGUST
All industries and commerce working as normal.
Tourism-wise, business “as normal” at all tourist sites. The complete reopening of beauty parlours, spas, entertainment facilities and rental properties. Conventions, fairs, meetings allowed. National and international travel in general permitted.
28th April Peru has 27,517 cases of coronavirus COVID-19.
There have been 728 deaths and over 8425 recoveries.
Over 3968 are currently in hospital, of which 568 are in intensive care on mechanical ventilators.
There are currently 656 beds in intensive care in all of Peru.
Over 232,747 suspected cases have been tested.
You can see up to date statistics for COVID-19 in Peru here, including by region, sex, and age.
Below is an ongoing timeline of how COVID-19 has progressed in Peru and how life and measure taken by the state have changed with time. Older entries will often have been superseded by newer ones, but I retain them here for the sake of history.
23rd April Peru extends quarantine till 10th May
Peru not yet reached the top of the curve. The last day will be 10th May, though that may change again.
23rd April 2.74% mortality rate of those identified with COVID-19 in Peru
22nd April Health Ministry and the Colegio de Medicos asks government to extend the quarantine
The government has been taking their advice up to now, so this may well happen. They say the number of cases of Covid-19 in Peru is still on the rise, we are not yet at the peak of the curve, so it would be dangerous to open up. The Health Ministry has asked for another two weeks.
21st April Quarantine end not yet determined
President said the decision whether to open or not next week is under constant evaluation
20th April Mortality rate in Peru at 3%, half of many countries
President said 3% of cases die, which is half of the 6% rate worldwide.
20th April Private colleges should adjust their fees
The president said fees should be adjusted as schools are not able to give classes with a physical presence. The Education Minister said they may reopen the chance for people to register with state schools if they wish. State schools are taking part in a system of remote education via television, radios, and the internet as well as via social media.
19th April Supermarkets and pharmacies to be open 7 am to 5pm Monday to Saturday
18th April Over 800,000 tablet computers to be distributed to rural homes whose kids most need them
The internet will be included free as part of the tablet package, to allow these children in the most rural zones to continue their studies.
97,756 tablets with internet will also be given to teachers in rural areas- including solar chargers where there is no electricity
18th April Inti Raymi cancelled
This normally takes place on the 24th of June and is one of the busiest weeks for tourism in Cusco.
18th April Another 1000 hospital beds to open in Lima this week for COVID-19 patients
The beds will be in the two towers of the Villa Panamericana, which was built of the Panamerican Games (an athletics championship). Currently, there are 900 beds in Lima of which around 600 are occupied
17th April 90% of parents are overdue in paying school fees
Some schools have agreed to lower school fees due to the fact that they’re not able to give the same service as when children can attend school. A report suggests 90% of parents are late in paying school fees, some do not have the money, others are hoping the fees will be reduced.
17th April Loans as part of Reactiva Peru to be 0.5% interest from BCR to banks
The loans to help companies keep employees on will be lent from the Banco Central de Reserva to the banks and financial institutions at 0.5% interest. Hopefully, they will pass this onto businesses at a suitably low rate.
16th April Over a million rural homes to receive a payment of 760 soles tomorrow
16th April Disinfecting tunnels are not backed up by any scientific evidence says Health Minister
The minister said the tunnels do not work as they do not disinfect the surface, rather they are trying to disinfect people, which does not work.
16th April Over 10,000 Peruvians have been repatriated to date
14th April Fine to be introduced for those who break rules of isolation
You can be fined between 86 to 430 soles for the following reasons. If you do not pay within 5 days you will be sanctioned by being unable to use the bank or carry out any legal transactions. This will be controlled by your DNI. People with autism are exempt. People are also allowed to take their dog out briefly, close to their home.
- Not keeping a one-metre distance from others in the supermarket
- Going out in the company of other people
- Not using a mask out in the street
- Be out in the street without an approved reason ( shopping for food or medicines or essential workers)
- Refuse to show your ID when asked by a member of the police or military
- Be out on a Sunday, when no-one is allowed out
- Breaking the curfew
- Be in a private car without the relevant permission
13th April Medical staff over 60 years old, or with medical problems to be retired
This is for their own protection. Foreigners who meet conditions will be employed to fulfill the urgent need for medical staff. This reply was given to people asking if Venezuelan immigrants who have offered their services as doctors will be accepted. Certain aspects of the press and society continue to attack people of this nationality at any opportunity sadly.
13th April New laws regarding employment have been approved in relation to employment
This will allow the “suspension perfecta de labores.” This means a person continues to be employed, or on the books of a company, and continues to receive health insurance, but they are not expected to work and the employer is not expected to pay them. The idea is to preserve jobs for when things do pick up again and avoid the mass firing of staff. This is allowed for a maximum of 90 days. The mass firings which CONFIEP ( a group of businessmen and women wanted would not be allowed the Minister of Employment made reiterated).
These workers will be allowed to withdraw some of the pension fund (AFP) and as well as their “Compensation por Tiempos de Servicio (CTS) a fund into which employers pay for each employee, normally used to cover periods of unemployment, in order to help them through the period without wages.
The minister explained the suspension perfecta de labores cannot be randomly implemented at the will of the employer, it is the last resort when the employer and employee have not been able to come to any other agreement such as using up holidays or working fewer hours and the only alternative left would be firing them. She said that companies will be supervised to ensure this is being applied fairly.
Companies who benefit from government aids such as Reactiva Peru cannot resort to using suspension perfect de labores. However, on the 16th April, a spokesperson from the workers’ syndicate of SUNAFIL said the law is not written that way and sadly, companies can take the money and still fire people using suspension perfect, so they do not have an incentive to retain workers.
Workers who earn less than 2400 soles per month and do not have access to CTS can be subsidized 760 soles per month by the state. This mainly applies to what is called MYPES or micro-businesses.”
13th April Withdrawal of pension funds opened up to more people
The following categories of people will now be able to make withdrawals from their AFP pension funds:
- those who take “suspension perfecta de labores” can withdraw up to 2000 soles
- those who are no longer working can withdraw up to 2000 soles
- those who earn less than 2400 soles, can withdraw 2000 soles of their AF, in two stages of 1000 soles.
13th April Peru to introduce fines for those who do not comply with isolation
The president criticized those who are refusing to comply with it and affecting everyone. He reminded that only 1 person per family can go out to do the shopping. Too many people are still going out in groups or in couples, hence why they’re introducing fines to try and end this.
13th April Indecopi to investigate over 40 companies offering products claimed to prevent or treat COVID-19
Indecopi is the consumer watchdog for Peru. While there are many who genuinely believe in alternative medicines here in Peru, it seems unlikely they have found prevention or treatment for COVID-19. Whether these companies are genuinely misguided in this case or seeking to exploit people is not yet clear.
11th April Government will consider making changes to the economic rescue plan
The president of the Council of Ministers said the announced rescue package will be altered if they need to be
11th April Minister of Work tells businesses she will not approve mass layoffs
Under pressure from CONFIEP, a group of businessmen and women who want the right to implant large layoffs of their workers, the minister says she will not allow them to ignore workers’ rights. CONFIEP argues it needs to make mass layoffs in order to protect other jobs, but their plea has not been received well by many.
The minister called a meeting with them today, to outline what she will and will not allow.
10th April- Peru scraps specific days for men and women
The president said this clearly had not worked, so the new rule is one person per family, irrespective of sex. As before, no-one is allowed out on Sunday. The curfew will now end each morning at 4 am, instead of 5 am, to allow markets to open earlier, meaning the number of people can be spread across an extra hour.
8th April- Peru’s extends quarantine till 26th April
The president says the Council of Ministers is going to discuss this today.
8th April reminder of financial measures so far
3 million of the poorest households will receive 760 soles- split into two parts. Some have already received the first payment, others are still in the process
35% of the wage of those who receive less than 1500 soles is being covered by the government
8th April- Spreading false information about COVID1-19 in Peru could result in a 6-year jail term
New measures, to avoid people spreading disinformation which creates fear and panic around COVID-19, mean offenders could face up to 6 years in prison.
7th April- President is evaluating whether to let workers withdraw 2000 soles from AFP pension funds
Those who have been out of work for 6 months are already allowed to withdraw 6 months, but today the president said they are evaluating whether they can extend that to allow those still working and on the books of a company to withdraw 2000 soles as well.
7th April- Peru launches Reactiva Peru financial rescue package
Government launched plan Reactiva Peru, said to value 30, 000 million soles. However many say the plan is flawed and does not go far enough. The tourist sector feels the plan is insufficient to prevent massive loss of jobs.
6th April- Easter Thursday and Friday will be a complete lockdown
Currently, men and women are allowed out on separate days. Sunday no-one is allowed out. making Thursday 9th and Friday 10th days no-one is allowed out for shopping or to go to the bank etc. Key workers can still carry on as normal.
6th April Hospital Ate en Lima now has 200 intensive care beds available
6th April Over 51,000 people detained for breaking quarantine/ curfew
What happens to these people remains to be seen, but their names and identities are being recorded, and they could be charged later.
6th April- Children in state schools start their year, a month late, via remote education
In order to not lose too much of the school year, the school will happen by remote means, until it is possible to reopen schools, which will not happen until May at the earliest.
Children will be able to access a series of educational resources vía radio, tv, and mobile phone- with free access to an official education site that will not use data on your phone or computer.
The President said that while it will not be easy, and that not everyone can do virtual education, as not everyone has internet access, let alone a computer, hence why they are starting with “remote” education. He said it is a great opportunity to advance education in Peru for the future.
Remote áreas that will receive school books and materials along with the food supplies that are being delivered.
3rd April Domestic isolation will end 12th April
The president announced, that all the indications from the reports they were examining were that the plan was working and it would end April 12th. However, he said things would return to normal gradually, with a plan to be announced soon as to how they will gradually start to reopen the country. The health minister said they may use “focalized quarantines” in certain areas after the 12th of April.
3rd April Masks to be made compulsory and will be given out free
Peru will produce masks which will be distributed by the Ministry of Health and anyone going out has to wear one
2nd April: Men and women to be allowed out only on separate days
Monday, Wednesday,, and Friday – only men will be allowed out. Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday – only women will be allowed out. The President explained by dividing the population in Half, it would be easier to control. No-one can go out on Sundays. This starts tomorrow, the 3rd of April.
Men and women who work in essential services, such as shops, banks, and hospitals are exempt from this new rule. They can still go to work on the days of the week they have to.
The President made clear that not everyone identifies as “male” or “female” and that soldiers and police enforcing the restrictions will be given instructions to ensure this is not a reason to discriminate against those who do not.
1st April Economic plan with valué of 12 points of Gross Domestic Product
The Economic Minister defended the Government’s decision not to release 25% of AFP pension funds. She said they have a very ambitious plan, which will cost 12 points of Gross Domestic Product and such a measure would not leave Peru with the stability to implement this plan.
1st April How will Peru protect women who are at risk of being confined with a dangerous partner?
During the period of quarantine, the special Number set up to report domestic violence has received 5418 calls about domestic violence. Special teams have been sent out to 538 cases, resulting in that 25 women and their children were taken to safe houses. The Minister of Women, also reported that there had been 43 rapes reported, including some to children in their own homes.
1st April Lima converts bullfighting ring into a temporary shelter for the homeless
1st April: Withdrawals from pension fund AFP to be allowed up to 2000 soles
Anyone who has not been “en planilla” or on the books of a company for the last six months, will be able to withdraw up to 2000 soles from their pension fund. This will apply to 3 million people, roughly half of the total who have pension funds in the AFPs.
1 400 000 will be able to withdraw the whole amount in their account, as they do not have more than 2000 soles total in their pension fund.
Those who are still working have the option to not contribute to their pension fund in April or May, thus retaining an extra 10% of their wage in these two months.
Amid calls from some politicians to allow everyone to withdraw 25% of their AFP or pension fund, the President defended the position of the Finance Minister who explained that this is not a viable option- as a massive cash withdrawal would have a huge effect on the value of the 75% that remained in the pension funds.
The president explained that they have to choose who can benefit from this- so better to choose those who most need it. The amount released so that 3 million people can withdraw up to 2000 soles each is equal to what would be released if the just the top 20,000 earners in Peru were allowed to withdraw 25% of their pension funds.
He continued that the pension system needs reform and they intend to do so after the crisis has passed.
31st March Shop to open only between 7 am and 4 pm
This is so people are back in their homes before curfew. In the areas where the curfew starts at 2pm, the shops will close at 2pm.
30th March- Hours of curfew extended
The curfew will be extended. Originally in effect between 8 pm and 5 am, there have been 36,000 people detained for failing to comply. The curfew is now going to start at 6 pm in all of Peru- except for four regions where it will start at 4 pm- because they were the regions least complying: Tumbes, Piura, Loreto and La Libertad. Anyone caught not complying could face charges.
30th March Two hospitals opened in Lima for COVID-19 cases
Two buildings, built for the Pan-American games in 2019 have been transformed into hospitals to house patients suffering from coronavirus.
27th Peru to announce a financial package to protect the economy
The president said that there are more economic measures on the way to help businesses and their workers, in order to help the economy recover from the situation.
26th Domestic isolation to be extended in Peru until April 12th
The president said the decision to extend by 13 days, is based on the reports from health officials.
26th Workers will be allowed to withdraw CTS
The CTS is a savings fund, and part of your wage is automatically paid into this. The idea is that if you then lose your job, you have some money to tide you over until you find another job. In the current situation, many have lost their jobs or had their hours and wages cut. The president said that they are allowing people to withdraw up to 2400 soles. If they have lost their job, they were already entitled to take it all.
26th Government will pay 35% of wages of any employee earning less than 1500 soles per month
Announced in today’s presidential address.
25th Repatriation flights arriving to take home tourists stranded in Peru
The Peruvian Chancellor announced that two flights are arriving from the US today. The US said it will prioritize those in greater need.
The British Embassy said yesterday the first “humanitarian” flight to take people back to the UK will arrive today.
Canada took some citizens home yesterday. Various other nationalities have already evacuated many of their citizens.
This despite the fact that Peru closed its borders completely on the 22nd, except for cargo planes. Flights are coming in via the military airport in Lima, as Lima’s international airport Jorge Chavez, has been closed since Sunday.
21st March All borders to close completely from midnight
While the borders had been closed for a few days, it was announced things would be even stricter.
19th March: First deaths in Peru from coronavirus
Peru suffered its first 3 deaths today from COVID-19. The first death was of a 78-year-old man, with high blood pressure; a 47-year-old man who suffered from bronchial asthma and obesity and a 69-year-old, who also had pre-existing medical conditions. The 47-year-old and 69-year-old had both returned from Spain recently.
19th March President announces updates on the situation of coronavirus in Peru
- The number of cases of COVID-19 has increased to 234 in Peru
- Peru has bought 1,600,000 testing kits, of which 1,400,000 are rapid testing kits
- 2 planes from Mexico, 1 from Israel and 1 from Chile have already taken tourists home
- 4 planes from Israel, 1 from Chile, 1 from Argentina and 1 from Mexico are programmed to arrive soon
- Minister is traveling to Cusco today to co-ordinate the situation of stranded tourists
- 477 people were detained last night for breaking the curfew, of which 152 were in Lima and Callao
- Hospital Até will be ready on 21 March, for serious cases, with 50 beds in the intensive care unit
18th March Peru announces curfew
18th March Peru will enforce a curfew between 8 pm and 5 am, starting tonight The President said this is because, despite the please, some people are still going out at night and socializing in groups. Especially youngsters. And some of these have caught COVID-29
The police and military will be ensuring people respect the curfew
The President said,
” You ask if this is a curfew. For some people, this carries bad memories. This is an obligatory, social immobilization. If you want to call it a curfew, fine.”
18th March Private cars to be banned from circulating in Peru
Private cars will not be allowed to circulate from 5 am 19th March. In effect, they will not be allowed from 8 pm tonight as that is when the nighttime curfew comes in. And then the ban on cars starts at 5 am valid 24 hours a day until the end of the state of emergency. The curfew ends each morning, private vehicles will be allowed to circulate only until.
Again the president emphasized this was only introduced because people were not respecting the need to stay at home.
Peru enters 3rd stage of COVID-19, community transmission
17 March. President announced coronavirus in Peru is at the stage of community transmission. That not all people who have caught it, have come back from Europe or have been in contact with people that have been in Europe. In other words, it is been spread from person to person within Peru.
Any tourists stuck in Peru and trying to get home
18th March- Ministers announces flights to take tourists out have arrived from Mexico and Israel. Others are still being negotiated
If you are a British national- the FCO is updating on the situation here. The British Embassy in Lima is asking you email firstname.lastname@example.org with your full name, location (be specific) and best form of contact ( ideally email)
If you are any other nationality- please check your specific government/ embassy page.
Peru declares state of emergency
Sunday 15th March, the President announced a state of emergency for the whole of Peru with effect from midnight.
Measures include Peru’s border closures and domestic isolation.
Peru goes into domestic lockdown
The announcement means everyone must stay in their homes, except for a few exceptions- to go to buy groceries or medicines, go to the bank or fill their car up with petrol. Going to work and then back home again is also allowed, but employers are encouraged to implement home working.
Peru closes borders
Peru will close all international borders at 23.59 Monday 16th March, except for the import and export of goods.
What does Peru’s “State of Emergency” mean?
Certain civil liberties and rights are suspended. And the police and military have the power to enforce it.
1. Everyone must stay at home from midnight tonight (bar some exceptions)
2. All international borders closed from 23.59 Monday 16th for 15 days.
Except for the import and export of goods and merchandise
3. Bars, restaurants, parks, and most public spaces are all closed
What does the State of Emergency in Peru mean for tourists?
Tourists are subject to the same rules as everyone else in this case.
How long will the State of Emergency in Peru last?
It was originally due to last 15 days, but has and will be extended as the authorities see fit.
Under what circumstances are you allowed out of your house/ hotel?
You are allowed out into the street in order to use or provide the following services
- Purchasing food or medicines
- Banks and financial services
- Medical centers, hospitals, etc for urgent cases or emergencies
- Help/care for the elderly, children, teenagers, people with disabilities or in vulnerable situations
- Return home
- Telecommunications workers
- Rubbish collection and cleaning
- To return to your home
- Hotels and accommodations but only to comply with quarantine
Peru`s government has assured there is not going to be a shortage of food or goods
Those working in the production and supply of food and other essentials are allowed to continue going to work, in order to ensure there is a continuous supply of food and essential items for all.
Developments leading up to the State of Emergency in Peru
14 March: FCO advises against travel to Peru due to the flight ban
FCO changed its Peru travel advice in light of the coronavirus outbreak. Advising British nationals not to travel to Peru (and also to various other countries) due to the problems they will have if restrictions mean they are unable to get home.
12th March: Peru ban incoming flights due to coronavirus
Peru announced it is suspending all flights to and from Europe and Asia to stop the spread of COVID-19.
This Peru travel ban starts on Monday 16th March. It will last for 30 days initially, with the option to extend.
It covers any flights, between Peru and Europe. And any flights between Peru and Asia (not that there are any direct flights between Peru and Asia). In both cases, it covers both inbound and outbound flights.
Technically it is not a “travel ban”- the language the government used is “suspension of flights”. They are not “banning” people from any place or of any nationality, merely making it almost impossible for people to get to Peru from Europe or Asia.
Is the Inca Trail closed?
Yes. The Inca Trail closed two weeks early in January due to a landslide at Winay Wayna campsite. It closes each February for maintenance. It was then announced the opening would be delayed until 16th March. But the state of emergency in Peru means it has not yet opened and we are not sure when it will open.
Is Machu Picchu closed due to coronavirus ?
Yes, Machu Picchu is closed as part of the State of Emergency declared 15th March.
15 March: A “State of Emergency” is declared, with obligatory domestic isolation for all and closing of borders
15 March: Peru closes ports to all cruise ships
Peru announced cruise ships will not be allowed to dock in Peruvian ports. Cargo ships are still allowed in and out
15 March: Lima councils close more beaches and parks
Various Lima municipalities (councils) have announced the closure of their beaches and parks. Lurin, Punta Hermosa and San Bartolo today followed Callao in announcing this.
15 March: Government minister says domestic quarantine for all is being considered
14th FCO updates travel advice to avoid all but necessary travel to Peru
It offers the same advice for various other countries because of the increasing complexity of world travel restrictions and increase of flight bans
14th March Beaches closed by some Lima councils
14th March Cross-sector committee spokesman says closing Peru borders could be an option
13th March Peru Health Minister announces new test centers for coronavirus due to open in April
Currently, all COVID-19 tests have to be sent to Lima for analysis. But regional COVID-19 testing centers are due to open soon
The plan is 14th April Tumbes and Iquitos. 16th April Cusco and La Libertad. 18th April Piura and San Martin. 22nd April Ica, Ucayali and Jaen. Clearly much can happen in a month.
13th March First case of coronavirus in Cusco
The 37-year-old local man, who became the first Cusco COVID-19 case is thought to have contracted the coronavirus on a recent trip to Washington DC, in the USA. He is in domestic isolation and in a stable condition.
13th March 16 new cases
12th March Peru announces a ban on all flights to and from Europe and Asia
12th March Peru closes all universities in addition to the schools which were already closed
12th March 5 new cases of coronavirus in Peru were confirmed
21-year-old who had been in Italy, a 28-year-old who had been in Germany and Spain, and a 25-year-old, 49-year-old and 63 years old. They did not say where these last 3 had been.
12th March Peru announces banning of the gathering of more than 300 persons
11th March: Another 4 cases were confirmed later in the day
11th March: Peru announces travel restrictions for those traveling from 4 European countries
11th March: Peru closes schools as a precaution till 30th March
All schools will close until 30th March. Both private and state schools.
11th March: 2 new cases of COVID-19 coronavirus in Chincha to the south of Lima
A 46-year-old man and a 27-year-old man. Both said to be stable and in isolation in their homes
10th March: 2 cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Huanaco, Peru.
A pair of brothers, aged 27 and 15 who had returned from Europe. Again they are said to be stable and in domestic isolation.
9th March: Arequipa puts all medical staff on standby
As a result, on the 9th March, the city of Arequipa has put all medical staff on alert and banned them for taking holidays for 3 months. This is in order to be prepared for any new cases that appear.
9th March: 2 more cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Peru, in Lima.
Both new cases are related to the case zero ( i.e. the first confirmed case in Peru)
8th March: 1 case of COVID-19 confirmed in Arequipa
This is an independent case from the Lima ones. A 29-year-old male, who had traveled from London at the end of February. He too is in a stable condition and quarantined in his home.
8th March: 5 more cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Lima
All had contact with case zero. These include a 7-year-old boy who goes to Newton College, a prestigious independent school in Lima. Newton College has taken the decision to suspend classes until 20th March. However, the child did attend school first.
6th March: Peru confirmed its first case of coronavirus COVID-19- case zero
A 25-year-old man, he tested positive in Lima after traveling in Spain, France, and the Czech Republic. The man works for LATAM airlines, who were quick to point out that he did not travel back from Europe on their airline, and has not gone to work since being back. They said he has not been in contact with any other LATAM employees.
12th March Peru had tested 883 people for coronavirus
On the 12th March MINSA, the Peruvian Ministry of Health announced, that up to the date, they had tested 883 people for coronavirus. All but 22 proving negative.
The first suspected cases in Peru came at the end of February when 4 Chinese tourists were tested in Lima with suspicion of having coronavirus, but the results were all negative.
Timeline of coronavirus cases in Peru
12th April 7519 cases, 193 deaths
2nd April 1414 cases, 55 deaths
25 March 480 cases, 9 deaths
24 March 416 cases, 7 deaths
23 March 395 cases
22 March 363 cases
21 March 318 cases
20 March: 263 cases, 4 deaths
19 March First 3 deaths in Peru from COVID-19
19 March: 234 cases of COVID-19 in Peru
18 March: 145 cases
17 March: 117 cases in Peru
16 March: 15 new coronavirus cases confirmed in Peru
15 March: 18 new cases
14th March 5 new coronavirus cases confirmed in Peru
Coronavirus in South America- how many cases are there of COVID-19?
When did coronavirus arrive in South America?
The first case of coronavirus in South America was the 26th of February, in Brazil.
The timeline of the spread of coronavirus into South America:
13th March- Uruguay confirms first 4 cases of coronavirus
13th March- Suriname confirms the first case
13th March- Venezuela confirms first 2 cases
11th March- Guyana confirms the first case of and death from COVID-19.
10th March Bolivia confirmed it’s first 2 cases of COVID-19
7th March Paraguay confirmed its first case each of coronavirus.
6th March Peru and Colombia confirmed their first case each of coronavirus.
4th March French Guiana confirmed its first cases of coronavirus
On the 29th February 2020, Ecuador confirmed its first case of coronavirus
On 26th February Brazil has confirmed the first case of coronavirus in South America– someone who had returned from an affected area in Italy.
The Economic cost of COVID-19 on Peru
We will only be able to see the true economic cost of coronavirus to tourism in Peru with time.
11th March, Canatur, the Peruvian Chamber of Tourism, warned the consequences of any quarantine will be massive for the tourism industry in Peru.
They predicted it could mean losses of up to U$ 500 million dollars for the Peruvian tourist industry. The fact that the government then decided to completely ban flights from Europe and Asia, will only make it worse.
What is coronavirus? How can I protect myself and others against it?
Read the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention´s FAQS about coronavirus. They explain it very simply.
In short, coronaviruses have been around for years. Most do not cause big problems to humans- for instance, a common cold. Most only exist among animals. Some, such as the SARS coronavirus has caused problems for humans. This new strain of coronavirus is called COVID-19- short for Coronavirus Disease 2019, which is when it was discovered. It is believed to have come from animals, much like SARS which broke out across the world in 2003.
Who is most at risk from coronavirus COVID-19?
Coronavirus COVID-19 can cause acute respiratory disease which if you are a very unlucky human, can kill you. Current figures suggest that there is a 1-2% fatality rate amongst those that contract coronavirus.
However- experts believe some people are more at risk than others.
A report suggests half those who have died in Wuhan, where the disease originated, were already suffering from existing conditions, mainly either high blood pressure or diabetes.
To protect yourself and others against coronavirus
As a kid, you were probably taught how to avoid spreading “germs”. This is exactly the advice being given to prevent the spread of coronavirus:
* Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough and do so into a tissue, then throw it in the bin
* No the back of your sleeve or a handkerchief is not an adequate replacement for a tissue.
*Stay away from the person who is coughing and sneezing all over the place.
*Wash your hands well with soap and water for 30 seconds immediately after
*Spray your hands with alcohol as an extra precaution (some say alcohol gel is not effective)
*Don’t poke your fingers into your eyes, nose, mouth.
*Avoid sharing cups/ drinking bottles/ cutlery etc. Avoid putting your hands into plates of food
*Stay at home if you are sick to avoid spreading it.
*Facemasks are now obligatory in many countries when going outside.
Sadly not everyone seems to adhere to that advice in day to day life. But that is the advice being given to stop the spread of this coronavirus.
What could be the economic effect of coronavirus on Peru?
While the obvious thing to think about is tourism, many other industries are affected. For instance, 85% of the squid fished in Peru is exported to China. This has currently been stopped.
Exports from mining from Peru to China are a huge part of the Peruvian economy. These and many other industries will be affected. This article takes a deeper look at the economic effect coronavirus may have on Peru and Latin America.
How deadly is coronavirus?
We will only know in hindsight. Statistics currently suggest between 1 and 2% of people who contract it die, and most (but not all) of those who have died, have been elderly or had underlying conditions. However, there are certainly some cases that buck this trend, including children and young people in seemingly good health, so we cannot be complacent or underestimate it. One thing is certain,COVID-19 is causing a lot of suffering and loss of life across the globe, and currently no-one is sure how it will end.
You can see up to date figures for coronavirus across the world here.
How does COVID-19 compare to other causes of death?
- There are 281 million cases of malaria each year in the world of which 405,000 die
- 1.35 million people die worldwide each year in road traffic accidents (2016 figure)
- 102 people per day die in road traffic accidents in the USA (average in 2016)
Figures from the United Nations World Mortality Report published in 2017 ( figures for 2015). Sourced from this article.
- 56 million people died across the world
- 155,000 died per day on average
- 6,500 died per hour on average
The importance of traveling again in the future?
You cannot travel to Peru at the moment.
But once everything returns to normal- Peru needs you to come to visit.
Tourism gives sustainable employment to a lot of people here in Peru and elsewhere. It provides a more sustainable alternative to illegal mining and illegal logging. It also allows people to lift themselves out of poverty, to gain education for their children, avoid malnutrition and more. It helps preserve life in so many ways.
Check the foreign office advice given by your country.40