The Yampu difference – Monica Irauzqui

“It is important to balance the locals’ need to survive with the animals’ needs for a win-win outcome” Monica Irauzqui

When embarking on a trip, a traveler always looks forward to have an experience of a lifetime, the kind that makes them pause and think about how unbelievably gorgeous the world is. But how can you increase the chances of getting that indefinable bonus quality in your travel experience? Our guest today, Monica Irauzqui designs such trips which aspire to satisfy the wanderlust of travelers, and ones that truly rock their world.

Monica Irauzqui is the Vice President and co-founder of Yampu Tours and YampGo, starting the company 21 years ago with her husband. Her travel experience comes from firsthand knowledge she has gained from multiple trips she has taken with her husband and two kids (so naturally, she is an expert in family travel). Her eye for detail, knack for knowing what clients will like and won’t like even after knowing them for a short amount of time, and impeccable memory for remembering even the smallest bit of information proves that she is one of the most trusted and skilled people in the Travel Industry.

Monica has been instrumental in creating a “client first” culture at Yampu Tours, She teaches classes to her staff on gaining and keeping trust. The Mantra of Monica and her team at Yampu is to create lifetime relationships with their clients. Yampu tours are private and authentic—no ‘cookie cutter’ experiences here! Tours are one hundred percent customizable to your whims and wishes. Yampu thrives to stand behind you to ensure that everything goes according to plan – your plan. Monica also has a travel school for people who want to become travel experts, or travel agents who want to ’up’ their game.

In today’s episode, our guest will share more about exciting travel destinations, challenging yourself even in travel, and the importance of getting a travel agent to plan and guide your trip. We will also discuss why the amazing Peru should be topping your travel bucket list even as we prepare to start getting out there again.

Listen in!

Social Media Handles and Websites

  • We are sharing what we love with our clients. We try to get to know everyone so that we find them joyful experiences that they would not have thought of on their own. [3:00]
  • I design trips of a lifetime and I want to show people experiences that they haven’t imagined. [4:05]
  • When I booked my first trip to Botswana, one of the activities was walking with elephants. [4:16]
  • It was an exciting adventure that wasn’t touristy and it was one of the best experiences of my life. [4:52]
  • I have learnt so much in the 23 years that we have been travelling to these countries and I have changed a lot. [7:59]
  • My husband and I travelled to Machu Pichu when we first met 30 years ago. [9:48]
  • We decided to do travel and it was more an investment of time, research and sweat. [10:47]
  • As clients started travelling with us and liking what we were doing, we always had to be one step ahead of them so we added more destinations. [11:11]
  • During Covid, we have added even more destinations while we wait for people to start travelling again. [11:29]
  • We just added the United States as a destination. [12:38]
  • Commercial Break [14:45]
  • Peru is a great destination and if I have to pick one, it is Peru. [15:25]
  • Right now they are limiting the number of people who can go to Machu Picchu therefore making this the best time to visit. [16:32]
  • A lot of my clients are sent on a one-day Inca Trail where they take the train most of the way and then get off and hike for about 6 hours into Machu Picchu. [17:30]
  • There is also a 6-day Salkantay Track where they have mountain lodges and you can sleep and hike all day. [18:06]
  • The Sanctuary lodge and the Inkaterra Machu Picchu are my two go to Hotels. [19:15]
  • The food scene in Lima, for a foodie, you have to take 3-4 days to sample all the amazing restaurants. [20:15]
  • You can go to Peru more than once for sure. [23:01]
  • Find a travel expert to show you things that you may not think of your own but will be spectacular for you. [24:40]


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