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You Don’t Have to Stop Selling Peru

February 4, 2010 By: Joe Pike

Macchu Picchu may be off limits to tourists until at least March following a major landslide in Peru, but that doesn’t mean agents should stop selling this Latin American jewel.

We spoke to several Peru specialists and learned that, although many people have either canceled or reschedule their trips there to April and March, there are still plenty of people who realize the country offers way more than just it’s ancient Inca Citadel.

“There are many tourism experiences around Cusco, in the Sacred Valley and other areas in Peru that have not been affected at all,” Sallie Rawlings, senior director of corporate communications for American Express Vacations and Travel Impressions, told Travel Agent. “ This is a terrific destination, but if travelers have their hearts set on seeing Machu Picchu, it will be better to book travel a little later to allow for all the necessary route repairs.”

The “route repairs” Rawlings referred to is the damaged and eroded PeruRail tracks between Cusco, Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu, the only means of access to the world wonder.

Some are expecting the rail to be up and fully running by March while others are a little less optimistic, predicting an April or May return.

Because of the canceled train rides, backpacking in the country could be tough so independent travelers looking to hop from city to city should probably wait until at least May.

Sandi Hamann of Preferred Travel of Naples, a Signature Travel Network member, says many of her customers are postponing their trips to May and June.

“It is an incredible destination,” she says. “But again, I would wait a couple of months. Wait until May, the weather is better this time of the year anyway.”

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