Important Information

Housing
Volunteers will have the opportunity to choose between two housing options.

  1. Live with a Peruvian family in Trujillo. Hear their experiences, enjoy their stories, and form a special bond with them. This is a great idea for those who prefer to be completely immersed in the Peruvian culture. Peruvians are known for being warm and friendly people and they will want to teach you all about your culture and traditions! From taking you to their favorite restaurant to buying local fruits and tamales from their favorite street vendor, you will get a truly authentic experience of what Peru is like from someone who has lived there all their life. The host families are all located in Trujillo, and are about a 45 minute micro ride (Trujillo’s main form of public transportation) to the clinic.*Homestays differ in their degrees of luxury, as some families are wealthier than others and the living standards differ from city to city. All homestays have been reviewed by HOP staff and are clean and  comfortable with western-style toilets and showers. You may be sharing a room with another volunteer, or you may have your own room. No volunteer will be alone in the home-stay, you will be with at least one other volunteer.*According to previous volunteers, the homestay experience is one of the most enjoyable and memorable experiences of their trip.
  1. Reside in a private room in a friendly, beachside bungalow in Huanchaco. This is only 10 minutes away from the clinic and is great for the volunteers who are coming for a short amount of time, for those who are passing through South America traveling, or for those who love the beach bum life! You will still get to experience home-style Peruvian cooking every day in a relaxing, breezy environment. Enjoy the comfortable hammocks as well as the 5 minute walk to the beach!All hosting options have WiFi, otherwise it is very common to find a cafe near your home, making it possible to communicate with your friends and family. Volunteers may also purchase a cell phone upon arrival to Peru.

*Note: If you are staying for longer than 3 weeks, you may choose to combine the two lodging options, and you must begin with the family home-stay. You will be responsible for moving your own personal items. You must inform us before you arrive if you plan to combine the two lodging options; we will not transfer you once you have already arrived in Peru, as we would have already paid the families. However, If you do choose to transfer once in Peru, the extra cost is on you and will be $100 per week.

Meals
Three meals per day are provided at the homestay. We work with our host families to accommodate each volunteer's dietary needs, but it is important to keep in mind that the same foods that you eat at home may not be readily available in Peru, and we encourage you to be flexible and take advantage of the opportunity to try homemade Peruvian cuisine. Peruvians are very passionate about their gastronomical tradition and are excited for you to try all of their favorite dishes. *We will accommodate around dietary restrictions, vegans and vegetarians are welcome!

Transportation
Hands on Peru will cover all in-country transportation costs when going to/from a specific HOP event. While in Trujillo, volunteers will be taught how to use the public transportation system to commute from their homestays, volunteer sites, and classes. HOP is also responsible for providing transportation to the group activities that are included in the program’s schedule.

All volunteers will be expected to take a “micro” (public bus) every day to the CESAPU clinic, and reliable taxis will be provided on the days where volunteers travel to other health centers and hospitals, if it is not easily accessible via micro.

All volunteers will be picked up at the airport by a HOP staff member or representative of HOP. We encourage volunteers to fly directly to the Trujillo/Huanchaco airport. This requires flying through Lima, and going through customs in Lima.

Please note: The process of Peruvian customs, baggage claim and baggage re-check in will take about 3 hours. Please plan accordingly.

*If you are not able to fly into Trujillo, arrangements will be made for your safety and your lodging in Lima.

Health and Vaccinations 
It is also important that each volunteer consider purchasing travel insurance for their time in Peru. This insurance should include medical coverage in case of an emergency. A few common companies are: travelguard.com and travelinsure.com.

Volunteers are responsible for purchasing health insurance that covers emergency medical evacuation. We do not provide insurance but can provide you with a list of providers that volunteers have used.

We refer all volunteers to the information provided by the Centers for Disease Control at www.cdc.gov/travel for the most up to date vaccination recommendations.

Passport
US citizens can enter Peru with a valid passport. Volunteers who do not hold a US passport must check with their respective embassies for information on travel eligibility. Volunteers are responsible for obtaining or renewing their passports. The passport must be eligible for 6 months post-trip.

Visa
US passport holders are not required to obtain a visa prior to travel to Peru. A tourist visa can be acquired at the Lima airport upon arrival to Peru. Non-US passport holders should check with their respective embassies for current visa requirements and regulations. Volunteers are responsible for ensuring that they are legally eligible to travel abroad.

*Peru recently enacted a new volunteer visa, which gives the volunteer up to 183 in the country. If you are planning on spending a lot of time in Peru, please consider applying for this volunteer visa!

Flights
Volunteers are responsible for arranging their own flights. All volunteers must enter Peru through the Jorge Chavez International Airport in Lima (code LIM). From there, volunteers must fly to the FAP Carlos Martínez de Pinillos International Airport located in Huanchaco, Peru, where they will be picked up by either a HOP staff member or HOP representative. Airport pickups will be arranged for volunteers arriving on the indicated fly-in dates. Please send HOP staff your itinerary before traveling.

Security
Peru is not a dangerous country, but like any place in the world you must be cautious. While you are using public transportation you should keep your possessions close to you. Also, you should not go out late at night by yourself. If you decide to participate in risky behaviors it is not the responsibility of HOP. HOP is only responsible for the activities done within the program. Excessive drinking, drug use, and inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated and we have the right to release a volunteer at any point in the program if they pose a threat to either themselves or to other volunteers.

Activities
HOP programs specific activities for each session. The activities are based on the time, the climate, the number of volunteers, and the possibility of the activity being available. The activities of your session will be communicated to you during your orientation meeting and in your information booklet. In case you do not arrive on the day in which an activity is taking place you lose the opportunity to participate. (The activities may include: tours of ancient Moche ruins like Chan Chan and Huaca del Sol, sandboarding, surfing, salsa lessons, Marinera show, etc.)