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Old 11-27-2007, 10:37 AM   #1
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Default Peru... Hostel Reservations?

I'm planning to travel a bit around Peru, and I've been looking at accommodations online and in let's go. It seems that a lot of places I would want to stay at outside larger cities don't have websites nor are they listed on hostel search engines. I'm wondering, is it common to not reserve a room while travelling around Peru, to just show up at a hostel or budget hotel? I had gotten the impression that it wasn't such an unusual thing in South America, but I still feel a better arriving in a city with a reservation as I travel alone. Any thoughts?
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Old 11-27-2007, 12:02 PM   #2
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You may not be able to get your first choice, but you will definitely be able to find a place to stay. Even still, when I was there in may (which is a peak time) you stood a good chance of getting into the popular hostels just by showing up. Sometimes you would have to drop your stuff and come back to see which reservations didn't show up though.

I would book 1 day ahead if possible, and don't worry about it if you can't. The hostel staff should be able to help you find a place to stay if they're full. There are plenty of very low cost hotels that are similar in price to hostels...it may be really basic, but there should be a place.

As an example, my friend and I ended up spending the night in a tiny border town because the border to Bolivia was closed. Someone pointed us to this place:




As you can see it doesn't look like much outside but its clean and comfortable...super cheap, maybe 15-20 soles. Shared bathroom, no heat, no hot water. It helps if you know spanish to find places like this, the Peruvians we were riding with didn't think we'd be ok with it, so you have to do some convincing to get pointed to these types of hotels. I think there are always places where they'll let you stay that aren't heavily trafficked.
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Old 11-27-2007, 02:09 PM   #3
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If you're travelling in the peak season you might consider booking a couple of days ahead for Cusco. However, like maracle said, if you miss out on one place, there will always be somewhere else available.
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Old 11-27-2007, 05:37 PM   #4
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I'm travelling in Frebruary. I get the impression that this isn't peak season...? I will book ahead for places like Lima, Cusco and anywhere else that has an abundance of hostels on hostelworld. I also want to go to Iquitos, Nasca, Pisco, and Ica/Huacachica (guidebook says backpackers tend to stay in Hucachina). For some of these cities I've found places that can be booked online and for some I haven't, but it seems that even when I can find something online, there are more attrative hostels and hotels listed in the guidebook, and it would be better to try showing up at those places rather than reserving a second choice.

It's good to hear that there will always be something available even if it isn't the first place I go to. I speak very basic Spanish. I am trying to brush up on it though!
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