Friday (October 23) – CUSCO – After eight months of suspension of tourist operations due to the pandemic, the train operator PeruRail announced the resumption of its activities with all health and safety protocols during the journey to the world wonder Machu Picchu (Cusco).
The company enabled 14 schedules on the Expedition and Vistadome trains with promotional fares for the national tourist, with prices starting at $25 dollars for round trips. Likewise, passengers from Cusco who wish to travel on these tourist trains will have promotional fares from S/45 soles or $12.5 dollars in round trips. The sale of tickets with this exclusive promotion for cusqueños will be made directly in the points of sale of Cusco.
The available itineraries allow passengers to choose as a starting and ending point the stations of San Pedro in Cusco and Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley; furthermore, they have been designed to enjoy a full day or to accommodate the trip with an overnight stay in order to get the most out of the visit to the ancient Inca city.
As of November 1st the Local Train will once again operate with all its daily frequencies on the route to Machu Picchu, with fares for residents of the district of Machu Picchu and communities surrounding the railroad: S/5.00 soles on long stretches and S/3.00 soles on intermediate stretches, and Cusco residents: S/ 12.00 soles on return trips.
[As a resident in Cusco, I tried to purchase a local train ticket on Monday and was told it’s not possible except for those people mentioned above.]
Regarding the Local Train, the railroad operator mentioned that it is a public transportation service that facilitates the transfer and integration of the inhabitants of Machu Picchu and the communities, so national tourists will not be able to access this service, because the capacity of attention has been drastically reduced to comply with the sanitary measures established by the Government.
Regarding sanitary measures, the company added that local or national passengers must make mandatory and correct use of their mask and face shield from the boarding points and on board the train. Likewise, no standing passengers may be transported and each passenger must respect the seat assigned on his or her ticket in order to guarantee the obligatory physical distance inside the cars.
Promotional tickets can be purchased now for trips between November 1 and December 20, 2020. The purchase of tickets, schedules and fares available for this promotion only for Peruvians and residents in Peru can be made through this website: PeruRail.com.
[NOTE: I tried to buy a ticket on Thursday and the payment went through, but no ticket was issued. I had to talk to an office representative who made a lengthy call. I received an email later apologizing and saying my money would be refunded within 20 days!) I bought a ticket this morning through the office on Av El Sol with cash and everything went fine.]
I’m traveling early in the morning from the San Pedro Station and returning two days later on the Expedition Train. Unfortunately, none of the available trains come all the way back to Cusco. As of this morning, the Expedition and VistaDome trains return only to Ollantaytambo while the the Belmond Explorer returns only as far as the Poroy Station.
Tickets on the train are significantly cheaper than normal tourist train fares. Instead of a regular minimum price of about $140, I paid only $32 (round trip).