How to buy Machu Picchu tickets online

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Machu Picchu

You’re planning a trip to Peru for one thing, and one thing only – to see Machu Picchu. Being the savvy traveler that you are, you type http://www.machupicchu.gob.pe (the official website for buying tickets) into your internet browser. Mission “buy Machu Picchu tickets ” is a go and you’re feeling good!

But after clicking through the website you soon discover that purchasing online tickets for this rock star attraction is not as easy as you originally suspected. Even the so-called English version of the site displays directions written in Spanish and let’s not even get started with how confusing all the steps are – especially for a first-time user. Your confidence is replaced with frustration.

If you can relate to the scenario described above, don’t worry – you’re not alone.

The website for buying Machu Picchu tickets online is anything but intuitive. Fear not! We’ve created a comprehensive 6-step guide with handy images to help you from start to finish.

Let us help you.

Bad to good

Okay. Fire up your computer and let’s get started.

STEP 1 – Select the type of ticket(s) you want

The following is a nice and easy warm-up.

opening page of Machu Picchu website

First (A) select MACHUPICCHU in the Place to Visi(Lugar a Visitar) section.

Then (B) pick the Route (Seleccione la Ruta) that you want. There are five options:

Option 1 Machupicchu This is the classic Machu Picchu entry ticket that gives you basic access to the citadel.
Option 2 Machupicchu
+Huaynapicchu  7am-8:00 am
This includes entry to Machu Picchu and the hike up Huayna Picchu during the FIRST group slot between 7am-8am.
Option 3 Machupicchu
+Huaynapicchu
10am-11am
 This includes entry to Machu Picchu and the hike up Huayna Picchu during the SECOND group slot between 10am-11am.
Option 4 Machupicchu
+ Montaña
7am-8am
This includes entry to Machu Picchu and the hike up Machu Picchu Mountain during the FIRST group slot between 7am-8am.
Option 5 Machupicchu
+ Montaña
9am-10am
 This includes entry to Machu Picchu and the hike up Machu Picchu Mountain during the SECOND group slot between 9am-10am.

“What’s the difference between hiking Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu Mountain?” you may be asking yourself.  Check out our blog post about the hiking options in Machu Picchu to learn more about the alternative routes.

STEP 2 – Pick when you want to visit Machu Picchu

Website for Machu Picchu tickets 2

After completing STEP 1, chose the date you want to visit Machu Picchu by scrolling through the calendar. The date you want should be highlighted in blue.

Note that the months and days of the week are in Spanish, even if you are looking at the English version of the website. Here’s a quick crash course in español if your skills are a little rusty.

Spanish to English translation for Days of the Week and Months

A number labeled “Availability” appears after you select a specific date on the calendar. This number sinks closer to zero (0) as more tickets for Machu Picchu are purchased, thus signaling lesser availability. When the availability number is in the double digits its a good indicator that tickets will likely sell out soon. During high season (June – September) Machu Picchu tickets sometimes sell out 3 months in advance.

Maximum availability for different Machu Picchu ticket options vary:
– Only 2500 people can enter Machu Picchu per day
– Machu Picchu + Huayna Picchu tickets are limited to 400 total each day (including both entry time slots)
– Machu Picchu + Montaña tickets are limited to 800 total each day (including both entry time slots)

STEP 3 – Choose the number of tickets you want

Website for Machu Picchu Tickets 4

(A) Type the number of tickets you want in the appropriate category: Foreign or National.

Foreign (Extranjeros): This group includes most foreigners. If you don’t hold a valid passport or government issued ID from Peru, Bolivia, Colombia or Ecuador, then you, your family, and/or travel buddies fall in this category. Machu Picchu ticket prices are more expensive for foreigners – that’s just how the cookie crumbles.

National (Nacionales y Comunidad Andina): This group includes residents of Peru as well as citizens of Bolivia, Colombia, and Ecuador who hold a government issued ID or passport.

The total amount for all the tickets you select will appear in local currency: the Peruvian Nuevo Sol (abbreviated S/.126 for example).

(B) Read the text written below the total amount. These bullets outline important pricing information for children and students tickets. It also indicated that everyone must present their current passport or ID card (along with their issued ticket) to enter Machu Picchu.

If you do, then take a deep breath and exhale slowly. 

If you’re traveling with children, this is what you need to know:
* According to Peru’s Ministry of Culture, children ages 7 and under do not have to pay.

If you are a student, this is what you need to know:
* Students ages 8 -17 receive 50% off the adult ticket rate
* Students over 18 years old must have an International Student Identity Card (ISIC), or a valid Peruvian or CAN: Comunidad Andina (Bolivia, Colombia y Ecuador) student card.

Read about children and student tickets for Machu Picchu on the official website. (Scroll down for English.)

If you’re the parent of a child or a student, then you will likely want to pay the discount rate. Perhaps you have already scoured the website in search of where to select the option for your discount rate?

Sigh. This is where frustration will likely arise.

Believe it or not there is not an option to buy Machu Picchu tickets for children and students online. We know it’s silly, but right now this is unfortunately the way the website operates.

So, what’s the next step? You need to buy your child/student admission ticket as soon as possible…

Here are your options:

1. Visit Peru’s Ministry of Culture office in Cusco located on Av. De la Cultura Nº238 Condominio Huascar-Wanchaq.  Hours availability from Monday to Saturday 07:00 – 18:30hrs.  At the time of your visit you’ll have provide the appropriate documentation to receive the discount rate.  Obviously this option isn’t of much help when you want to buy the ticket online and in advance before all the tickets sell out.

2. So really the only viable way of buying a discount Machu Picchu ticket in advance is to have a friend or your travel advisor in Cusco do it for you. If you have any questions, feel free to contact our team of travel experts. 

Press “Step 2” at the bottom of the webpage to continue purchasing your ticket(s) for Machu Picchu online.

step 2

STEP 4 – Fill in your personal info.

fill in your information for Machu Picchu tickets

Now fill in all the info. for each person’s Machu Picchu ticket.  This includes their full name, gender, country of residence, age, and travel document information.

The options in the dropdown menu titles “Country” are listed in Spanish. For some countries, their Spanish name is very unlike their English equivalent.

Estados Unidos – United States
Inglaterra – England
Canadá – Canada
Alemania – Germany
Egipto – Egypt
Sudafrica – South Africa
Suiza – Switzerland
Filipinas – Philippines
Grecia – Greece

From the “Type of document” dropdown menu, unless you have a valid Peruvian ID, you will select PAS-PASAPORTE and then type in its number.

IMPORTANT: If you pressed the British flag to get the English version of the webpage at the beginning of this whole process, it’s time to revert back to the Spanish option because you cannot continue onto the next phase unless you do so.

How do you do this? Simply press the Spain flag – the one furthest to the left.

Website for Machu Picchu Tickets 6

Continue to the next phase by pressing Paso 3 (Step 3) at the bottom of the page.

Paso3

STEP 5 – Generate a reservation number

Are you still with us? You are almost there.  You can do this!

Reservation number for MaPi

To retrieve your reservation number, first (A) type in your address (Dirección)

Then (B) accept the terms and conditions (Acepto las conditionales) by checking the box. These terms and conditions are – as you might have already guessed – written in Spanish. You can save them as a PDF and then copy and paste the text into an online Spanish-English translation site if you like.  In summary, the conditions state that you must enter the information correctly.  The ticket is only valid on the date printed on the ticket and once you purchase the ticket(s) cannot be refunded nor can the information on them be changed. On the day you visit Machu Picchu, you must present your admission ticket and your original identity document (aka your passport).

And (C) Press NUEVA RESERVA and save the copy the reservation that pops up on your screen as a PDF (and email it to yourself for safe keeping).

reservation number

Take note of the reservation number (reserva). You’ll need this number to finalized your online Machu Picchu ticket in next and final STEP 6.

 STEP 6 – Make the final payment

 (A) Click PAGOS (payments), type in your reservation number (from STEP 5) and then press Pagar (pay). 

Step 6 of buying MaPi tickets

A summary of your reservation will show up on your screen. Note that a small administrative fee (gastos administrativos) are added on.

STEP 6 part two

(B) Press Enviar (send) to continue to making your Machu Picchu ticket payment. 

It’s time to make your final payment. Get your VISA bank card ready.

(C) Type in your VISA bank card information.  Mastercard, Chase, Bank of America, Scotiabank and any other bank card WILL NOT work. For this situation, the visa tagline “it’s everywhere you want to be” rings particularly true when buying tickets for Machu Picchu. 

Final payment for MaPi tickets

Then (drum roll please) press PAGAR/PAY to finalize your payment.  CONGRATS on your successful purchase!

Jump for joy. Grin from ear to ear. Interpretive dance.  Do whatever you need to do to rejoice in successfully making it through all 6 steps of our how-to guide for buying tickets to Machu Picchu online!

To access and print your Machu Picchu admission ticket(s), go back to the site homepage. Click the “Check In” tab on the navigation bar and type in your booking code and press search.

Machu Picchu admission tickets

Save the PDF copy of your ticket(s) that pops up on your screen and email the document to yourself for safe keeping. Then print the PDF document, your admission tickets, and present it at the entry of Machu Picchu along with your passport.

If you know anyone else who might be buying tickets for Machu Picchu online in the near future, help them out by sending them a link to this blog post. We’d also love for you to share YOUR THOUGHTS with us in the comment section below. Was this step-by-step guide helpful? Tell us what’s on your mind. :)

*April 2017, entry time slots for Machu Picchu Mountain (Montana) updated.

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About Author

Britt is addicted to the spontaneous nature of travel and personal growth it inspires. She bought a one-way ticket to South America in 2012, starting her journey in Argentina and slowly traveled north through Chile, Bolivia, and Peru. Unable to shake her addiction of Latin America, she now happily calls Peru home.

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