Insurance

Most credit card companies offer travel protection insurance, but this offers little more than protection against theft or lost luggage.  We recommend that all guests carry some form of travel insurance that also includes medical coverage.  We sometimes travel to remote areas where rescue can be complex and costly, so a provider that also offers medical evacuation is recommended.

To ensure adequate coverage, it is important to disclose the exact nature of your travel and the activities you will be involved in while abroad.  Find out in advance what your deductible will be and if your insurance provider makes payments directly to providers or reimburses you later for overseas expenditures.  Not all policies will cover medical transport of an injured patient during a serious emergency.  Be sure to read all the fine print and make sure to make any claims necessary within the time allotted under your policy.

Recommended Insurers:

Travel insurance for trip interruptions/cancellations  – www.TravelGuard.com

Worldwide emergency evacuation and rescue insurance – www.GlobalRescue.com/PatagoniaSkiTours

We can help with booking travel/rescue insurance if you need additional assistance.

 

Currency

Traveling in Argentina requires that you exchange currency to pay for most purchases.  Exchange houses (Casa de Cambio) are littered throughout large cities and most towns.  They usually require a passport to exchange money and each teller is located behind a glass partition for security. AVOID street vendors who want to exchange your bills and NEVER go to an unsecured or unknown location to exchange money.  You can exchange money at most airports, but the rate is often very low.

After President Mauricio Macri took office at the beginning of 2016, the Argentine Peso (ARS) has returned to the open market and is no longer artificially controlled by the government. The current official Argentine Peso to US Dollar exchange rate is about 15:1.

Credit Cards are accepted at most establishments, but foreign transaction fees often run around 3-4% of total purchase.  ATMs are also located at most banks and you can withdraw funds at the official rate.  Note that there is usually an ATM fee that accompanies the foreign transaction fee.  It is imperative that you notify your bank of your travel plans before departure to avoid your card being turned off.

Utilizing your bargaining skills when making small purchases for gifts and souvenirs is recommended at shops and fairs.  Keep a positive attitude and maintain a friendly vibe with merchants and you won’t be disappointed.  Keep a stash of small bills and change to allow for smooth transactions.  

 

Health

Keeping your body and mind in good shape along your journey starts will adequate rest and proper diet. Eating balanced meals and staying hydrated is essential to your vitality on our adventure.  Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption is recommended, especially at elevation.  Stretching before each activity day is encouraged and paying attention to when your body is tired is important to staying healthy.  Pharmacies are easy to come by, but their hours are often hard to judge.  Traveling with typical remedies for headache, diarrhea, nausea, heartburn, and cold/flu is recommended.  If you ever feel that your health is slipping, please notify a guide to assist you with purchasing medications.

Injuries are avoidable and can be mitigated with proper warm ups and cool downs.  Maintaining a consistent fitness regimen before arrival will ensure that your body is less susceptible to strains and sprains.

Altitude sickness can strike anyone traveling to higher elevations without proper acclimatization.  Proper hydration and rest are essential to avoiding Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS).  If you feel like you are experience AMS, notify a guide immediately and return to a lower elevation.

 

Security       

Argentina is a relatively safe country for tourists.  Avoid wearing expensive jewelry in urban centers and keep a close eye on your packs and cameras.  Pickpockets in crowded areas are possible.  Traveling in a group limits the likelihood of theft.  Keep all your personal items within arms reach if possible and limit the amount of items you travel with each day.  Lockers and strong boxes are available at most lodging choices and you can leave valuables in your room during activity days.  It isn’t a bad idea to have a photocopy of your passport should you loose it.

 

Airlines and Customs

Most airlines flying into South America are accustomed to passengers with ski equipment.  Check with your carrier’s baggage policies to avoid excess fees.  A durable roller ski bag is recommended for carrying gear.  A valid passport is required for all visitors to Argentina that is greater than 90 days away from expiration.  

Any electronics (cameras, laptops, phones) should be stored neatly in your luggage and should not be stored in their original packaging.  This will eliminate any confusion should custom agents search your bag and suspect that you are attempting to sell NEW goods without paying tariffs.

 

Communications

Interacting with those back home or in-country is somewhat difficult at times. Here are a few tools we use:

Whatsapp:  This is an internet-based text/call service that is free as long as you have a data connection.  We can even set up a group of all clients on each tour to share photos or info.  This is available for both iOS and Android and is a great tool.

Skype: Also internet based, this is a great because you can put credit on your account and make phone calls to any number worldwide.  Skype to Skype of course is free and there is a video feature for keeping up with the family.

International Phone Plans: While expensive, this can be utilized by contacting your provider and setting up international calling.

 

Passport Info

It is recommended that all visitors have sufficient funds (at least US$50 per day), as well as onward or return tickets and documents required for next destination.

 

Americans: US nationals require a valid passport for travel to Argentina, but no visa is required for stays of up to three months, providing the visit is for tourist purposes only.

 

UK nationals: UK nationals require a valid passport, but no visa is required for a stay of up to three months for British Citizens and British Overseas Citizens, provided the stay is for tourist purposes. A visa is not required for a stay of up to one month for British Nationals (Overseas). All other British passport holders require a visa.

 

Canadians: Canadians require a valid passport, but no visa for stays up to three months, providing the visit is for tourist purposes only.

 

Australians: Australians require a valid passport, but no visa for stays of up to three months, providing the visit is for tourist purposes only.

 

South Africans: South African nationals must hold a valid passport, but no visa is required for stays of up to three months, providing the visit is for tourist purposes only.

 

Irish nationals: Irish nationals require a valid passport, but no visa for stays of up to three months, providing the visit is for tourist purposes only.

 

New Zealanders: New Zealand nationals require a valid passport, but no visa for stays of up to three months, providing the visit is for tourist purposes only.