If you are going during the off season, do not book a hotel ahead of time in Aguas Calientes, the town at the base of machu Picchu. When you get into town, there will be lots of people offering you rooms. Ignore them. Walk into town and then start going from hotel to hotel asking how much a room is, what is included (bathroom, hot water, breakfast), and always ask to see the room. Within seeing two or three rooms, you will have an idea of what your money will buy you and what you are willing to afford. For example, when we were there in September 2008, we walked around and asked about a few different hotels. The one we chose was a clean, yet sparsely decorated room with a private bath for $15 a night. We would not have found this if we would have taken the first place we found nor if we had booked in advance via the internet (some hotels and guesthouses don’t have websites but that doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with them). This same idea works with restaurants. Look at menus at a few different restaurants before choosing one. You’ll be able to get a feel for how much dishes cost and won’t get trapped in an expensive restaurant.