Dear friends,

“Año nuevo, vida nueva”, as the local saying goes: New year, new life! We, the Kallpeños, see change as one of the best ways of experiencing life; as we try to find better ways of being. Not wanting to sound too philosophical! In practical terms, Argentina has always offered the ideal conditions for change – and always with a touch of passion!

In the last 3 years inflation has been around 26% to 30% a year with the same increase (or more) in salaries, but with a much lower increase in the dollar exchange rate, putting huge pressure on prices. The change we saw this time – and one we very much agreed with – was to persuade suppliers not to raise their prices. And so we’ve done a good job in maintaining almost the same prices to you.

Now, 2014 is presenting an accelerated situation with inflation over 30% but – at this very moment – a greater devaluation of the peso, which might perhaps allow us even to lower our rates a little. On the other hand, since our suppliers have made a big effort to keep prices low, they will need to recover a bit. But our plan for 2014-15 is rather than maintain the same prices, to lower them… at least this is what should be happening if Argentina were a country fixed to any kind of international reality! Let’s meet up in ITB first, share a good bottle of Malbec, and then discuss prices.

Meanwhile, In Gotham City…
…we are finalising the implementation of the new operating software started in mid 2013, which will allow us to smoothly combine operational and administrative issues, but also speed up our quoting and booking process, taking into account the irregular inflating peso scenario. A big THANK YOU for all the patience you’ve shown us and also to the stoical members of the Kallpa staff!

With these back office issues to deal with, our usual and eternal passion for innovation and creativity has been building up, and so now is the time to – gently – explode! The best is yet to come, and this is what we have in store…

We very much believe in constant communication (and the world is always changing, right?) so, starting with this very newsletter, we’re beginning a new way of providing you with information: we now have a Kallpa blog, photos, and YouTube videos that you can share with your clients.

Hiking in the Andes is our great passion. We are always scouting new areas, so after launching Bariloche hiking modules for FITs we will open new regions to allow small numbers of travellers to hike throughout Argentina and Chile with extremely reasonable prices and all the necessary safety backup.

The Kallpa Self drive Kit is a hit ! Fortunately, the 1st season of the customised Kallpa GPS for our self drive programs has been a success. We have lots of amazing and enthusiastic reviews from your travellers! And so, apart from new itineraries, we’re going further: the Kallpa GPS… Tips? Twists? Gems? Lost Ark?… would you help us to name it? The competition is open and we promise the winner a fabulous prize. Travellers also love our handmade purse for all the driving material, which is a great support for local artisans in the north west of Argentina.

We have so much more to tell you, but let’s meet in February with the next edition of the new Kallpa News!


Happy 2014!