If you want to make the most of your visit to South America, a continental airpass will allow you to venture outside of Peru and see neighboring countries at a discount. A South America airpass can be valid for one or two countries, or cover most of them within a fixed number of miles. The mileage-based pricing makes them significantly cheaper than buying individual tickets. Passes are usually offered by airlines or by a specific region’s tourism sector, and prices range from around $400 to $2,000.
As with most travel packages, the offerings are seasonal so it’s best to look things up a few months before your trip. Confirm prices and destinations before buying a pass to make sure they are as advertised, as prices can change abruptly. Your travel agent can help you find the best package and plan your itinerary, or you can simply get one when you arrive. The latter may end up being cheaper since it’s all in the same territory. Some of the most popular South America airpasses include:
All America Air Pass: Covers most flights within South America, as well as Mexico, the Caribbean, and parts of the United States. It’s accepted by a wide range of airlines, but is only available as a package with a return trip to your country of origin.
LAN South America Air Pass: Available for travelers coming from outside South America (except Brazil) arriving on LAN (a South American alliance airline) and other selected flights. It includes travel within Ecuador, Peru, Chile, and Argentina; and between these countries and Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia, and Venezuela. The package is offered through coupons (you can buy a maximum of 16) and mileage fares can vary from country to country.
One World Visit South America Air Pass: Covers LAN, American Airlines, and British Airways flights, and allows travel within Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Bolivia, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Destinations are divided into zones, which determine the prices. Coupons range from $120 to $360. A minimum of three flights is required, with the first and last flights on a One World Alliance airline.
TAM South America Air Pass: Offered by TAM, Brazil’s main airline and the largest airline in South America. It includes flights for two to five countries, including Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Peru, and Venezuela. Prices range from $339 to $1,236, depending on mileage, and passengers must fly a minimum of 1,000 miles.