Travel Advisory: Peru – Level 4: Do Not Travel (C)(T)(H)

Do not travel to Peru due to COVID-19.  Exercise increased caution in Peru due to crime and terrorism.  Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Peru due to COVID-19.

Travelers to Peru may experience border closures, airport closures, travel prohibitions, stay at home orders, business closures, and other emergency conditions within Peru due to COVID-19.  Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Peru.

Do not travel to:

  • The Colombian – Peruvian border area in the Loreto Region due to crime.
  • The Valley of the Apurímac, Ene, and Mantaro Rivers (VRAEM), including areas within the Departments of Ayacucho, Cusco, Huancavelica, and Junin, due to crime and terrorism.

Country Summary: Crime, including petty theft, carjackings, muggings, assaults, and violent crime, is a concern in Peru, and can occur during daylight hours, despite the presence of many witnesses. The risk of crime increases after hours and outside the capital city of Lima where more organized criminal groups have been known to use roadblocks to rob victims.

U.S. government personnel cannot travel freely throughout Peru for security reasons.

Read the Department of State’s Peru country information page.

If you decide to travel to Peru:

Colombian-Peruvian border area in the Loreto Region – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Drug trafficking and other criminal activity, combined with poor infrastructure, limits the capability and effectiveness of Peruvian law enforcement in this area.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens as U.S. government personnel are restricted from traveling within 20 kilometers of the border with Colombia in the Loreto region, except on the Amazon River itself, without permission. This includes travel on the Putumayo River, which forms most of the Peru-Colombia border.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Valley of the Apurímac, Ene, and Mantaro Rivers (VRAEM) includes areas within the Departments of Ayacucho, Cusco, Huancavelica, and Junin – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Remnants of the Shining Path terrorist group are active in the VRAEM. The group may attack with little or no warning, targeting Peruvian government installations and personnel.

Drug trafficking and other criminal activity, combined with poor infrastructure, limit the capability and effectiveness of Peruvian law enforcement in this area.

In urban areas, the crime rate has increased. U.S. government personnel are restricted from traveling in the VRAEM except for certain areas during daylight hours. The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens due to these travel restrictions.

U.S. government officials and their families are permitted to travel within many areas of the Department of Cusco, including the Machu Picchu area, the Sacred Valley, and the city of Cusco.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Travel Restrictions for U.S. Government Personnel

U.S. government personnel must request advance permission for any travel to the Peruvian-Colombian border and the VRAEM.  Sometimes, they are required to travel in armored vehicles or carry personnel trackers.  They cannot use inter- or intra-city bus transportation or travel by road outside urban areas at night except for:

  • Travel by commercial bus on the Pan American Highway, between the Pan-American Highway and Huaraz, or between the Pan-American Highway, Arequipa, and Cusco.
  • Travel by car on the Pan-American Highway south from Lima to Paracas or north from Lima to Huacho (approximately three hours north and south of Lima).

In the restricted areas, they are permitted to use only the following routes during daylight hours:

  • Road travel from Ayacucho city to Huanta city, staying within the city limits of Huanta, and from Pisco city (Department of Ica) to Ayacucho city.
  • Train travel from Lima to Huancayo city (Department of Junin) and Huancavelica city.
  • Road travel from Lima to Huancayo city.
  • Road travel from La Merced city to the Satipo provincial boundary.

Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.

For Assistance: