Can tourists bribe their way out of Machu Picchu? Would you?

CNN doesn’t mention it, but Korean TV news stations are reporting that helicopter evacuations of tourists stuck in Machu Picchu depend on bribes.

I was able to find an Australian news article that said helicopter seats were going for as much as $500. That article seems to pretty much copy the Times Online.

Anyway this all leads me to some questions:

Why doesn’t CNN mention this? Their article is only an hour old according to Google news so it should be pretty up to date. The Australian one was 3 hours old so the British one must be even older.

Would you try to bribe your way onto a rescue helicopter? On the one hand it seems pretty unfair – why should the people with cash in their pockets get to go first? But then what would be more fair? Whoever is able to push to the front of the crowd gets to go first? If it were my wife and I stranded, I would be willing to bribe my way on to a helicopter (though I never have $500 on me) and wouldn’t really worry about the morals of it.

Would you take Machu Picchu off your list of places to go? My wife says she’ll only go when they don’t expect much rain. Now I’ll have to research which seasons get the most precipitation…

Filed Under: Travel safety

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  1. WA says:

    You are scum. Resorting to bribery is a practice that is in fact needed to get over in some countries but it is a slimy way to do things.

  2. James Trotta says:

    Scum, eh? I guess I’d feel worse if I didn’t do everything I could to protect my family. Are you telling me that if a bribe might keep your spouse or another loved one safe, you would not consider it?

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