How to start the Cayo Perico Heist in GTA Online

how to start the GTA Cayo Perico Heist
(Image credit: Rockstar North)

Wondering how to start the new Cayo Perico Heist in GTA Online? The new update dropped on December 15 and introduced a new heist, as well as an assortment of new vehicles, weapons, and radio stations. The Cayo Perico update also saw the first map expansion to come to GTA Online, with a new private island, owned by the infamous drug dealer, El Rubio.

The Cayo Perico island is also the location of the titular event, but you may be wondering what exactly it is you need to do to get to Cayo Perico and how to do the new heist. As luck would have it, you've come to the right place so read on to find out how to start the GTA Cayo Perico Heist.

How to get to the new Cayo Perico island

There are a few things you're going to need before you think of starting the Cayo Perico Heist. You're going to need to have a good amount of spare cash lying around, too, but more on that below.

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When you first log in to GTA following the update, you should receive a text from Miguel Madrazo who will ask you to meet him at The Music Locker in GTA Online, a new nightclub in Los Santos located beneath the Diamond Casino and Resort in East Vinewood. Head there first and meet with Miguel for a cutscene.

Once the meeting is concluded, you'll need to splash out $2.2 million on the GTA Kosatka submarine which will act as your headquarters while you plan out the Heist. If you think that price is steep, rest assured you're getting a lot for your money and there are a number of upgrades available to make it more impressive if you've got excess cash to burn.

You can locate your newly purchased submarine HQ on the map and the Services Menu will allow you to call a dinghy to transport you to it if needed. Once you reach the Kosatka and step aboard, you'll be greeted with another cutscene.

Once that's done, there's one more requirement before you can start the Heist—you'll need to be either a CEO, President, or a VIP. The first two require you to own property, while the VIP option can be toggled on via the Interaction Menu.

And that's it! You're now free to start making your plans and get started on the preparation missions, such as searching out the required intel from the GTA Cayo Perico scope locations.

Sarah James
Guides Writer

Sarah started as a freelance writer in 2018, writing for PCGamesN, TechRadar, GamingBible, Red Bull Gaming and more. In 2021, she was offered a full-time position on the PC Gamer team where she takes every possible opportunity to talk about World of Warcraft and Elden Ring. When not writing guides, most of her spare time is spent in Azeroth—though she's quite partial to JRPGs too. One of her fondest hopes is to one day play through the ending of Final Fantasy X without breaking down into a sobbing heap. She probably has more wolves in Valheim than you.