Peru Hop is made up of 4 co-founders who all live in Lima, Peru for the last 10+ years: Will (Irish), Conor (Irish), Pete (English) and Paolo (Peruvian). You can read more below about how we started Peru Hop.
We are not a huge corporation that have a massive fleet of buses, or a billion-dollar airline, but just 4 young guys who got together in 2013 to try create a way for travelers to discover the real Peru in a safe and flexible way using our savings and hard work!
We all travelled around Peru before Peru Hop was created and know that most tourists don’t actually get to discover the Real Peru or know much about the Peruvian people after their trip.
We love this country, we all now have Peruvian kids, and want you, the traveler, to have a truly authentic local experience in a safe and easy way so more and more people can come to this amazing country and help the local people grow.
The story of how Peru Hop started involves chasing love, plenty of stupidity, Irish charm to avoid bankruptcy and plenty of sweat and tears!
Will and Conor, 2 Irish guys aged 28, travel around Peru together, having a great time and plenty of drinks of course! Will meets a Peruvian girl on this trip.
Will comes back on vacation to visit his now Peruvian girlfriend, and is blown away by the food and culture that he had no real idea about back in 2010.
Will, maybe as a naive Irishman, is convinced to move to Lima with around $30,000 in savings, no visa, no job, with the Irish attitude of “sure I’ll figure it out”.
Will’s local Peruvian girlfriend begins to not only show him places he had no idea about, but teach him some funny things about what life is really like in Peru
Copying a hop-on, hop-off concept from abroad, Will comes up with the idea of Peru Hop, a way to Discover the Real Peru with an onboard travel guide teaching tourists about what life is actually like in Peru along the way!
After a few months of brainstorming and thinking of why it would not work, Will is still convinced that his Peru Hop idea would be a success amongst travelers to Peru.
Will partners with a local Peruvian, Paolo (who now by the way speaks English with an Irish accent) in order to figure out how to do business here.
Will convinces his friend Conor (at this time living in Australia) to also move to Peru.
A week later, an Irish girl is arrested smuggling cocaine out of Peru (google it!)…needless to say our friends and family were more than worried about what business we planned to run in Peru!
We meet an English Travel guide, Pete, in an Irish bar (not stereotypical) and after a few drinks convince him to join us and make it four co-founders of Peru Hop.
Our phrase “Don’t be a Typical Tourist” was created from the realisation that we had all been typical tourists when we travelled here in the past and not seen or done so many of the things Peru Hop was going to offer.
We are so convinced by the Peru Hop concept that we believe buses will be packed within a week, so we will easily survive on our savings.
The first Peru Hop buses depart Lima and Cusco with a respectable 18 and 8 passengers each. We were right, our dreams are going to come true!
The next Peru Hop buses depart Lima and Cusco, with ZERO passengers on either buses. We were wrong, our worst nightmare is coming true!
Halloween, and with no sales staff, Will sells 2 tickets in a backpacker hostel dressed as a monk to 2 drunk guys from Finland using pen and paper, promising a bus packed full of other tourists
The 2 guys from Finland are the only 2 passengers on the bus, and Will, the salesman who promised them everything apologises, but the guys write to us saying the trip was amazing and to stick at it.
We end the year with all our savings gone, extremely worried about how we will survive, and with our team of 10 guides being reduced to 3 guides!
However, the 108 passengers we had in those first 2 months kept telling us the same thing “this is amazing, keep it going and word of mouth will spread”.
We start to build up debts with our bus partners and tour operators, as we tried to keep the service operating.
Will has been telling our bus partners that the 4 of us are just the face of the company, that we have multi-million euro investors in Ireland behind us, but there have been issues with the bank wires and things but not to worry
After 6 months, Peru Hop is growing with more passengers, but still not enough for us to cover our costs, but we are confident we can get to break even
Our bus partners tell us that they don’t believe us, and unless we pay back the debt (around $50,000), all buses will stop the next day. We don’t have even close to $50,000 and nobody to borrow the money from.
Thankfully, the luck of the Irish saved the day and they chose option 2!
From there, Peru Hop slowly, but surely, grew thanks to us giving travellers an incredibly authentic local experience, all whilst providing European levels of safety and service.
Word of mouth spread and we eventually reached break even by the end of 2014. We eventually paid back the bus partners and tour companies over the next few years with high interest rates, a fair deal for everybody.
Looking back, if we knew how long it would take to get to break even, we would have never started Peru Hop as we would not have been able to afford it.
Moving to Peru chasing love, stupidly thinking our buses would be full from week 1, and using our Irish charm to convince people to believe in us all contributed to the creation of Peru Hop.
Since then, we have dealt with a pandemic that means that Peru has still not recovered its tourism numbers even 4 years later!
We have had road protests, breakdowns, floods and everything else you can possibly imagine and are still standing here today.
We are extremely grateful to everyone who believed in Peru Hop back in 2013/2014 when nobody knew about us and we had no reviews online etc.
And we are incredibly grateful to this day that people still decide to trust Peru Hop with their Peruvian travel experience, rather than some billion-dollar airline or huge multinational public bus company.
We are far from perfect. But as fellow travellers ourselves, we know how important your holiday is to you. This is why we promise to do everything we can to make sure your once-in-a-lifetime trip to Peru is unforgettable.
Thank you so much for reading,
Will, Conor, Pete and Paolo
At Peru Hop, we have a golden rule: all of our guides must be Peruvian. This ensures an authentic and insightful experience for our passengers. Our guides will become your friend and share their first-hand knowledge of what life is like in Peru, where the minimum salary is only $300 per month (we pay our team a lot more than this obviously) and guinea pig is a fancy culinary dish!
We carefully select our guides based on their friendly and hardworking personalities, as well as their humble nature. Our guide team is the backbone of Peru Hop, and their word-of-mouth recommendations have helped us become the company we are today. They represent us, the founders, every day and ensure our passengers have an unforgettable trip.
Our guides understand that this may be your only opportunity to visit Peru, and they want to make it as special as possible. They know the local secrets to help you save money while enjoying the best local food. They also share their own personal stories of growing up in Peru, giving you a deeper understanding of the country’s culture and history.
In addition to being proud Peruvians, our guides have excellent English (if they can understand the thick Irish accents of two of our founders, then they can understand any accent!) and have an exceptional knowledge of Peru’s history and culture. They are wonderful, humble people who will ensure you have a memorable experience. And if you ask nicely, they might even teach you some salsa moves or some Spanish phrases to help you navigate your way around the country.
We are committed to ensuring your satisfaction, and we welcome your feedback on our guides. All of the feedback that we receive is always bought to the attention of the founders of Peru Hop for review. We know that we aren’t perfect, and as the owners we are always willing to take comments on board and use as an opportunity to improve our service for the better.
Our customer service team is the driving force behind our company. Comprising of local Peruvians and expats who have made Peru their home, they have worked tirelessly to establish themselves as the leading customer service team in the travel industry in Peru. Our team prides itself on responding quickly and thoroughly to any inquiries we receive, as evidenced by the many positive reviews we have received from our satisfied customers.
We understand that you are either planning your dream trip to Peru or are already here, and that you may have questions or concerns that require our assistance. Our primary goal is to help people, and we established Peru Hop to help travelers explore Peru safely and securely. Our team of Peruvian Travel Experts has built up a wealth of knowledge and experience over the last 9 years, meaning that there are very few questions or issues that we have not encountered before. You can trust that we will always provide you with the most helpful and efficient solution to your inquiry.
In the unlikely event that you are not completely satisfied with the response you receive from our customer service team, we want to know about it. Every issue is flagged to our co-founders, and we strive to continually improve our service. However, we are confident that you will be extremely happy with the level of customer service you receive from us.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or requests you may have. We offer various ways for you to reach out to us, and our team will respond to you as quickly as possible. Thank you for choosing Peru Hop!