The Most Frequently Asked Questions About Galapagos Travel

To help you prepare for the journey of a lifetime, Quasar has put together a comprehensive round-up of Galapagos frequently asked questions that are essential reading before embarking on a Galapagos Yacht Safari.

At Quasar, we understand that planning a bucket-list trip to Galapagos can be both exhilarating and overwhelming. With our decades of experience exploring these iconic islands, Quasar’s Expedition Designers are here to make the process seamless. Nothing will stand in the way of you, Darwin’s discoveries, luxurious yacht accommodations, and your new penguin friends.

Whether you're a first-time visitor or a frequent Quasar adventurer, our Galapagos FAQ round-up is designed to provide you with a one-stop-shop of valuable insights, expert tips, and answers to your burning questions.


The Galapagos Islands are 6 hours behind GMT (equivalent to USA Central Standard Time)

Spanish is the official language of Ecuador and its provinces such as the Galapagos Islands. English is spoken in the main tourist centers, important hotels, on our yachts, by our guides but not by the general population. If you require a guide in a language other than English you should let us know well in advance and an extra fee may apply.

Since the Galapagos Islands is a province of the country of Ecuador, the official currency is the US Dollar, which was adopted in the year 2000.


While Spanish is the official language of Ecuador, the official language of our expeditions is English. The voyage will take travelers to remote destinations where the interaction with our guides is essential. In the interest of safety and for the enjoyment of the experience we strongly recommend that travelers who do not understand English are accompanied by someone who does, such as a friend, family member or a Tour Leader.

While on board the yacht you will have the opportunity to purchase wine, beer and spirits, including mixed drinks, from the bar. Guests are not permitted to bring alcoholic beverages on board. Alcoholic beverages must be presented upon boarding and will be secured by the yacht’s crew up until the conclusion of the cruise. No Guest under the age of 18 may possess or consume alcohol. You may purchase an Open Bar package which includes local beer, red & white house wine, spirits & cocktails. For complete details and rates, please see our Onboard Wine & Spirits Menu.

We have a small boutique that offers t-shirts, polo shirts, jackets, hats, scarves, etc with your yacht’s theme on them. You can also purchase suntan lotion, insect repellent and things of that nature. You can settle your bill at the end of the cruise by paying with any major credit card or cash in US Dollars.


These Galapagos luxury tours are intended for persons in reasonably good health. By forwarding the deposit the passenger certifies that he/she does not have any physical or mental conditions or other condition or disability that may create a hazard to himself/herself or other passengers. Please remember to take your personal medications, vitamins, sea sickness medication (as a precaution), aloe vera, hand sanitizers, insect repellent or anything else you may need. For travelers who wear glasses, we recommend for you to bring either contact lenses or a prescription mask for the snorkeling activity.

The Galapagos form a part of Ecuadorean territory. It is your responsibility to ensure that your health (vaccinations, insurance, etc.) and other travel documents meet the entry requirements for all destinations on your itinerary. Visit the World Health Organization’s website that has the most up to date information on required health and travel vaccinations for all countries that you visit before, during or after your trip. To view this information, please visit:

Modern hospital facilities are not available in the Galapagos. The towns of Puerto Ayora and Puerto Baquerizo have small hospitals and drug stores. We recommend to bring your own medicine as brands may change from one country to another, or a specific medicine may not be available. Due to the lack of services and medical facilities we strongly recommend you get emergency medical evacuation insurance.

If you need medical assistance please inform your Cruise Director immediately. They will assist you in a timely fashion by setting up an appointment with our onboard doctor or contact the closest doctor. Our Naturalist Guides and most of our crew are well versed in First Aid. The yacht carries a limited selection of medical supplies oriented towards first aid and minor needs.


The Galapagos enjoys fair weather almost year round. Please refer to our Galapagos Weather page to learn more.

Good weather allows the Galapagos to be a year round destination. Please refer to our When to visit the Galapagos page to learn more.

The Galapagos Islands waters have the Humboldt Current's influence that brings cold waters especially during the mist rainy season (cool weather) from July to December. The warm season is during the months of January to June. The southeast trade winds become weaker and the water from the Panama Basin remains warm. During this season there is more of a tropical climate with some occasional rains. "El Niño" current may cause a much greater flow of warm waters, making the surface warmer and rainfall increase.


Special excursions may be organized after your cruise. These include hikes to volcanoes on Isabella, diving around dives sites close to inhabited islands, kayaking, horseback riding and snorkeling. Please inquire with us about special excursions after your cruise.

We offer a series of extensions to complement your Galapagos Trip. You can extend your stay in Ecuador to visit Andean markets, colonial haciendas, local indigenous cultures, or the Amazon rainforest. We also offer trips to Machu Picchu and the Inca Culture in Peru and the Patagonia of Chile and Argentina. Please refer to our Trip Extensions Page.


You will need to fly in to Ecuador, either to the coastal port of Guayaquil or to Ecuador’s capital in the highlands, Quito. From there, you will take a domestic flight to the Galapagos Islands, which lasts 1 hour and 45 minutes from Guayaquil (add 35 minute flight from Quito to Guayaquil). Domestic flights are best handled by Quasar Expeditions. You will receive your flight itinerary when you book your trip. Please refer to our How to Get to the Galapagos Islands.

You will have to clear customs upon arrival to Ecuador. All of your personal baggage will be scanned for items such as fresh fruit and or other fresh plant and animal foods. The Galapagos Islands does not have customs since there are no international airports. In the airport your personal luggage will receive a short inspection for things like fruits or seeds that might be introduced to the islands.

Currency in Ecuador and Galapagos is the US Dollar. Small denominations should be brought when shopping. Avoid bringing $100 dollar bills as these will not be easily accepted except at banks.

Banks are open to the public from 9:00 hrs to 17:00 hrs. Monday to Friday. Most banks in Galapagos will allow you to make a transaction with your National bank.

Automated Teller Machines can only be found on San Cristobal Island and on Santa Cruz Island. You will have access to an ATM only at the beginning and end of your cruise and once more during your cruise. Most ATM's accept international ATM cards.

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