Report   DETAILS


Security Message: Cusco (Peru) Kidnapping Threat

Western Hemisphere > Peru > Lima

The U.S. Embassy warns U.S. citizens of a potential kidnapping threat in the Cusco area.  The Embassy has received information that members of a criminal organization may be planning to kidnap U.S. citizen tourists in the Cusco and Machu Picchu area.  Possible targets and methods are not known and the threat is credible at least through the end of February 2013. For the moment, personal travel by U.S. Embassy personnel to the Cusco region, including Machu Picchu, has been prohibited and official travel is severely restricted as a result of this threat.

Review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

Thousands of U.S. citizens routinely travel to the Cusco region without undue incident.  The U.S. Embassy remains confident of the Peruvian government’s efforts to ensure the safety of all tourists in the region.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Peru enroll in the Department
of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step.  STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website at http://travel.state.gov, where you can find current
Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Specific Information for Peru at http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_4965.html. For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy or consulate for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can stay in touch and get Embassy updates by checking the Embassy Lima website or Lima ACS Facebook page.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). Follow us on Twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/travelgov, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smart-traveler/id442693988?mt=8 to have travel information at your fingertips.

The U.S. Consular Agency in Cusco, Peru, can be found at Avenida Pardo 845, Cusco.  The office can be reached by phone at (51) 984-621-369 or (5184) 231-474, and is open Monday through Friday, excluding U.S. and Peruvian holidays, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  For any emergencies involving U.S. citizens, please contact the American Citizens Services (ACS) Unit of the U.S. Embassy’s Consular Section, located in Monterrico, a suburb of Lima, at Avenida La Encalada, Block Seventeen; telephone 51-1-618-2000 during business hours (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) or for after-hours emergencies; website at http://lima.usembassy.gov/ .  The Consular Section is open for emergency services, including registration, from 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. weekdays, excluding U.S. and Peruvian holidays.  Non-emergency services are provided by appointment only.