The Peruvian Ministry of Culture announced that Inca Trail permits for the 2018 hiking season will be released for sale beginning the week of October 2, 2017.  

In previous years, permits went on sale in early January, although last year, they were released in mid-December 2016, for the 2017 hiking season.  Groups planning to hike in April, May and June 2018 can expect those permits to sell out quickly.  In recent years, permits for the month of May were depleted in a few hours on opening day.  The number of available permits in 2018 remains the same as years past:  500 per day.  Including porters, guides and support personnel.  

What are the options when Inca Trail permits sell out?

You can change your travel dates to coincide with dates where permits are available.  If not possible, there are alternative hikes that don't require permits.  All those hikes include a visit to Machu Picchu by train.  However, there is one way to hike the Inca Trail over the Sungate when permits for 4-day Inca Trail are sold out.  Click here to go to the description of the 5-Day "COMBO" hike to Machu Picchu.

This is good news for people who are ready to plan their trips to Peru in 2018, as people can confirm flights and hotels without worry that they won't be able to synchronize with their hiking dates.  And this is helpful for tour operators who will have access to permit availability information to help people make decisions about travel dates.

How do you reserve the 4 day Inca Trail hike?

  • Choose your dates, then contact our US office by email or phone,757-714-6649.  If you plan to hike in May, we ask you to provide 3 choices for start dates. (example:  May 7, May 6, May 8)
  • Email copies of valid passport for each person.  (passport should not expire within 6 months of your travel dates)
  • Call our US office to pay non-refundable deposit.  (permits cannot be refunded, transferred, changed or cancelled)

Can Inca Trail permits be placed on hold?

No one can hold permits for any reason.  Once they sell out, availability is gone for everyone.  All tour operators have equal access to the available permits.  The only way a tour operator can get a permit is to submit your passport and pay the deposit. 

Will permits go on sale for the 2 day Inca Trail hike?

Yes. Permits for hikes in 2018 will be available in October 2017. The same rules apply for anyone planning to hike the short 1 day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. It is rare that these permits will sell out.  But there is a limited number and tour operators cannot guarantee availability.  Large groups, or people who are sure about their travel dates can reserve short Inca Trail hikes now.

What if your passport is due to expire?

If your passport needs to be renewed, we can use your old passport to get the permits.  Before you mail your old passport for renewal, make a good quality copy for your records.  When you travel to Peru, it is necessary to bring both the old and new passports.  AT THE INCA TRAIL CHECKPOINT, YOU MUST PRESENT THE PASSPORT USED TO GET YOUR PERMIT.  If you don't have a passport, it is not possible to buy a permit.   

Want to see descriptions of the 4 day Inca Trail hikes?

If you have questions about anything, just call or email our US office. 757-714-6649. We're here to help you. Located in Virginia.