by | Mar 14, 2021 | Inca Trail | 3 comments

Inca Trail porters

When you visit the Andes in Peru and go on the Classic Inca Trail To Machu Pichu 4D/3N, you barely carry anything. It’s the Porters of The Inca Trail who do the entire job and take the load into their own hands. For roughly 4 days, they will carry everything for you, while also making sure that you have access to all the stuff and items when you need them.

Since pack animals are not allowed on the Combined Inca Trail Hiking Tours, it’s the Inca Porter that has to carry all of that. Of course, you can also hire your porter if you want him to assist with any of your items.

Before you embark on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, be sure to read our Frequently Asked Questions section so that you know what to expect.

Inca Trail Tours Tha Includes Porter

Salkantya Trek and Inca Trail 7D

Salkantay Trek & Inca Trail 7D


Short Inca Trail And Lares Valley Trek 4D

What is The Role of The Porters on The Inca Trail?

The porters will carry everything related to the Inca trail equipment for you, as you enter the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu from KM 82 and enjoy the sights and all the amazing experiences. They are the ones that walk for a very long time Carrying all Our Camping Equipment. They set up camps and then set them down, all while handling anything else related to logistics.

Most of the time, the Porters on the Inca Trail are locals from the Cusco region, and they know the Inka trail very well. That makes it simple for them to not only assist tourists and make unforgettable experiences but also keep tourists safe and away from any potential dangers Ejm. Natural Disasters and unpredictable weather.

Porter Welfare

Porters are very important for the tourism industry in Peru. That’s why there’s a law porters protection law in the Peru government that’s focused on keeping them safe and safeguarding their standards of work. According to this law, a porter needs to have access to the right equipment and clothing, and there’s also a minimum wage they need to Carry per day.

To make sure there are no health issues, the load limit is 20 kg for every porter and in Tour Leaders Peru we make sure in everything Clothing, the right equipment, uniform, and proper travel equipment to survive 4 days along the Inca Trail.

The National Superintendency of Labor Inspection does make some inspections randomly to ensure that Porter’s laws are applied properly. Otherwise, there will be sanctions to keep in mind, and that’s incredibly important to take into consideration when you put extra clothes in your duffle bags.

Only Porter In The Inca Trail – Why Not Animal?

In 2019, a total of 45,105 people took the 4-day Inca Trail route starting at Km 82 (source: MINCETUR). To protect the condition of the trail from all that foot traffic, measures have been put in place. Pack animals are no longer allowed on the trail because their hooves can damage the stone steps and path. Additionally, only 500 daily permits are available. Finally, every February the Inca Trail is closed for maintenance.

Where Do You Meet Inca Trail Porters?

Usually, you meet them at the beginning of the trail (k82) and then pass via the Km 82 control point. The National Park Controllers will check their documents and permits, and they will weigh everything to ensure they are not getting past the legal limit. In case a porter’s load goes over 20 kg, then the tour operator will have to deal with a fine. If a company has a lot of penalties, then it will not have a license to operate on the Inca trail. This is very serious, and it’s all due to the legal requirements in Peru.

Some companies are creating workshops and all kinds of training sessions for the Inca Trail Porters but not in our Company. They want to make sure that their skills and performance are at their highest. Plus, they want to keep the porters safe, since that helps make the entire experience more engaging and rewarding for everyone involved, which is what matters the most here. Most reputable companies will offer personal accident insurance to their porters, just to ensure everything is ok and that they are well treated.

Inca Trail Porters
Inca Trail Porters Before The Dead Woman Pass

Select The Right Inca Trail Tour Operator

One of the challenges that appear when you want to go on the Inca Trail is that there are a lot of reputable companies, but also many shady ones. You don’t know exactly who is authorized to do treks in Peru. Only certain companies have the certification needed for something like this, so try to keep that in mind.

What you can do is study the ethical practices of a business. Compare the websites of tour operators and see their legal standards and the way they are involved with the local community. You also want to study client testimonials and even ask trekkers about their experience on forums if possible. Trying to find as much information as possible does help a lot, and it will give you a good insight into that company. If anything seems strange or fishy, you can easily move on to the next business in line.

If you see that a company appears to be reputable, but they have a low price point, ask them why is. Do remember that they have to pay all kinds of fees, porter welfare, and a variety of other things. That’s why prices can’t be too low. You also want to know the number of porters that will come with your group. Normally companies bring 2 porters per tourist, it all comes down to the group size.

Inca Trail Equipment

Why Are Pack Animals Not Allow On The Inca Trail?

The reason is simple, there’s a lot of foot traffic and the pack animal hooves are very hard on the path and stone steps of the Inca Trail. As a result, there was a decision to not allow animals to protect the integrity of the Inca Trail. It’s easy to understand why the decision was made this way, and it certainly shows the importance of keeping the Inca trail safe and away from any possible dangers.

Can You Tip The Inca Trail Porters?

It’s a good idea to interact with porters during the trip and you can tip them as much as you want. If you know Spanish. Speak with them, as this will make the experience and interaction a lot more pleasant for everyone involved. This will also help you learn more about life in this region. The challenges they have, and also the best spots that you can check out during your trip. Normally. Inca Trail Hikers tip $30 per porter and $60 for the cook. Keep in mind this is for your entire trip 4 days 3 nights.

Hiring the Inca Trail Porters

It’s possible to hire a porter that will carry either 8 kg or 15 kg of your items. While this is not a mandatory service. It will help you quite a lot. Having a private porter makes sense, so you want to book one when you are handling the Inca Trail permits. Keep in mind that just 500 tourist permits are available daily, and this includes staff like porters. If you want a private porter, that also means you have to pay for their entrance fees, food, and salary. However, it’s well worth it to do so, as it will help you get more items you need, and it’s a great way to support the local economy too!

Key Aspects of Porter Law Peru 2024 – Law No. 31624

  1. Porters in the employment relationship are under the subordination of their employer, typically a tourism company or agency. They are subject to private labor regulations and provide cargo transport services on a permanent, albeit discontinuous, basis.
  2. The minimum age for porters is proposed to be 18 years old instead of 16, ensuring the establishment of safety and health standards in the workplace. Additionally, there is a weight limit of 20 kilograms applicable to men.
  3. The porter’s work schedule on the Inca Trail allows for a maximum of 48 hours per week, with 5 consecutive days of rest between shifts. This arrangement ensures both productivity and well-being, striking a balance between their dedicated service and necessary time off.
  4. Porters are entitled to basic labor conditions to ensure their well-being. These include access to nutritious meals, proper clothing, and suitable equipment like lumbar support belts. The tourism operator is responsible for providing overnight items, adequate rest, and necessary care.
  5. Supplementary insurance for work-related risks must be provided by the tourism operator. For males, the load limit is up to 20 kg, while for females, it is 15 kg. Rest periods should be sufficient to allow workers to recover and prevent fatigue accumulation. During overnight service days, it is essential to provide suitable indoor environments for overnight stays to prioritize the well-being and safety of the workers.
  6. Working Conditions Porters have the right to minimum labor conditions, such as:
    • Provision of nutritious meals, appropriate clothing, and suitable equipment, including lumbar support belts, overnight items, and adequate rest and care, all of which must be provided by the tourism operator.
    • They must have supplementary insurance for work-related risks, which must be guaranteed by their tourism operator.
    • The load limit is up to 20 kg for males and 15 kg for females.
    • Rest periods must ensure the worker’s recovery to prevent fatigue accumulation.
    • Overnight stays should take place in suitable indoor environments during overnight service days to ensure the worker’s well-being and safety.
  7. Porters are required to be available to the employer throughout the entire expedition. They need to wear suitable attire and use appropriate protective equipment when transporting the assigned cargo, as specified in the regulations.
  8. Remuneration for Porters entails a daily payment of no less than 3% of a UIT (Tax Unit), equating to S/138 soles per shift. Furthermore, individuals responsible for cooking duties will receive an additional 30% of the minimum remuneration. Overtime hours exceeding the 48-hour weekly limit will be duly compensated.
  9. To ensure the safeguarding of fundamental labor rights, porters’ work activities must uphold principles of equality and non-discrimination. Respect for the right to freedom of work and collective rights is paramount, and it is strictly prohibited to employ individuals below the age of 18.
  10. Portering is deemed a high-risk endeavor, necessitating travel companies and tourism agencies to ensure supplementary work insurance (STCR) coverage throughout each shift.
  11. Travel companies and tourism agencies have a crucial obligation to ensure and enforce safety and health measures in the workplace. This includes assessing physical, psychological, and geographical conditions. The national authority responsible for overseeing these activities is tasked with enforcing these provisions.
  12. The establishment and registration of National Porter organizations will pave the way for the creation and implementation of a comprehensive Porter Workers Registry. This registry will serve as a centralized platform to ensure proper documentation and organization of porter workers nationwide.
  13. Overnight stays must take place in suitable surroundings, ensuring that porters are equipped with the necessary gear and attire. The Ministry of Culture grants porters free access to the Inca Trail network, akin to public employees, as long as it is to render their services.


Here is Tour Leaders Peru, we will make adjustments as soon as you book with us. The first thing that we have to do to hike the Inca Trail. Make your Machu Picchu reservation then we can proceed to make adjustments and make sure all your requirements for your Great adventure with our Inca Trail Porters and us!!!

Thank you for reading our travel Articles. If you have any comments please make them below and share them with your travel mates.


  1. JeffreyNet

    hi awesome post, thanks for sharing

  2. Best Experience

    Before traveling to Cusco, we researched a lot about different operators. Some are more recommended and others are not. Local Tour Leaders Peru came as highly recommended by some of our friends who had done several tours with them years ago.

    We opted to do the Classic Inca Trail to Machupicchu with them and we have absolutely no complaints. Everything was very well organized from beginning to end.

    Staff, porters, guides, cooks, were all very helpful and very professional in their work. All very efficient preparing the campsite, having warm water ready when we got there. They always took warm coca tea by the morning to our tents and then warm water to wash our faces.

    REI Camping equipment of very good quality and above all clean. Delicious food, abundant and especially fresh. with vegan and vegetarian options.

    Local Trekkers Peru is worth every dollar. They don’t overcharge for what they offer. I absolutely recommend using this company as your Inca Trail operator.

  3. NatourAndes

    This article is brimming with information about Inca trail tour, hanging tight for more like this. I have additionally discovered a website anybody can check for more data to short Inca trail to Machu Picchu It was knowingly more instructive. You may discover more insights regarding it here.


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Cesar Conde

I’m Cesar Conde Licensed Tour Guide in Peru, owner of Tour Leaders Peru and Travel Advisor. My other side job is a Digital Nomad. I share my amazing travel experiences, stories, guides, and itineraries for travelers like you and me!


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