Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Beating the Euro in Paris (and the rest of France)

Beating the Euro in Paris (and the rest of France)

Old Mar 19th, 2008, 07:41 AM
  #21  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 15
The term "French bargain" need not be an oxymoron, does it? Well, thanks to all these great tips posted here, France can turn into a cost-cutter's delight. But what about museum passes, counter vs. table service (anyone know the French terms for these?), "peek season" times to go for bargains, and ways to sight-see, not "sight-spend"? And I'm not talking about landing "dans le chocolate"---that is, Paris! What about the rural regions of France, from the Loire to Provence? Can't wait to get some great tips to put in our new photo-rich Fodor's France guide! Merci mille fois!
Robert_F is offline  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 10:06 AM
  #22  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 17,568
Well a lot of the Americans have been chatting about bad Franlish such as "Prefix Menu". well in France there is the concept of Table d'hote (Table of the host) this can just be the evening meal in a B&B or a grand chanteau can advertise this in the evenings in holiday areas.

No choice of what you eat (ok often a vegitarian special) , everyone eats together and chats away. Prices very good.

The other eating sign ot look out for is Les Routiers. This is the traditional sign for lorry drivers but of course being French this is a sign of large amounts of local food at very low prices. Normally starts at 12:00 (say until 12:15) wine included and again no menu just eat what is put in front of you.

We use this when taking bike holidays in france because you need all the energy you can get, around 12 in any town, look for the workers heading towards very simple looking restaurants and prepared to enjoy.

Finally if you are in a wine region and have had a little degustation in the morning ask madam where to eat. I've never been disappointed
bilboburgler is online now  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 10:18 AM
  #23  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 78
Tagging for the great tips.
Thank you all for sharing
sglw is offline  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 11:11 AM
  #24  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,269
julies, are you there? Here's another point in your (gite) favor. If a gite has a washer, that's a money- and time-saver.
Coquelicot is online now  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 11:32 AM
  #25  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 563
http://www.meetingthefrench.com/
Some great 2 hour (or less) meetings with the working Parisiens for under 10 Euros.

And, why buy water when you can refill the bottle from your hotel tap?

I have stopped buying gifts for those at home - the memories are mine and the trinkets really don't usually mean anything to those who weren't with you. (This does not apply to grandkids' gifts.)

And, unless you are willing to pay for shipping, remember you have to pack anything you buy, some of which you can find at home. For example, buying Sephora USA will be in dollars not the Euros you would spend in the store on the Champs.

Eat from the local food shops and/or markets. Buy your pastries the night before and only pay for coffee at the hotel (if there's room service; I wouldn't take my own food to the breakfast room obviously).

And walking, people watching and window licking is free.


palette is offline  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 11:55 AM
  #26  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,804
Where would you send a friend/(me! ) who wanted to spend between 1-3 days outside of Paris---and not spend a ton? I won't be too specific in a budget...but what would you say is a "great value" when it comes to one of these side trips?

What would you suggest?
Katie_H is offline  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 04:14 PM
  #27  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 22,063
The very first thing that I would suggest is to know how to shop for "Prem's" train tickets on the www.voyages-sncf.com official French railways site, and NOT be suckered into booking tickets on RailEurope.

This is discussed quite often on the branch.
kerouac is online now  
Old Mar 19th, 2008, 04:59 PM
  #28  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 518
Some great tips here! I would second the suggestion to "reste au comptoir" in a cafe, vs. sitting at a table. You will save a few coins, and it's a great experience.

--Outside of Paris, if you're driving around, look for wine cooperatives where you can buy wine "en vrac." Bring your own liter bottle and they will fill it for you.

--Many (but not all) bakeries sell sandwiches, which are great for an inexpensive lunch.

--In Paris, try ethnic cuisines -- it's not French food but the cultures do have colonial connections! Vietnamese food, couscous, falafel are all delicious and unique in Paris.

petitepois is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 01:28 AM
  #29  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 17,568
A three day trip outside Paris.

City of Bordeaux
City of St Malo
City of Le Mans
Chablis/Auxerre etc
Nimes/Avignon/Arles
Bescancon/Colmar/Strasbourg
Take a B&B barge at the start/end of season to keep costs down

Get there by train, stay in a Logis-de-france.fr type hotel, take local trains, buses walk eat, paint, museum visit, chat to shop keepers
bilboburgler is online now  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 05:04 AM
  #30  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 981
kerouac made a great suggestion - Morgan B's guide helped us save quite a bit of money on our train tickets!
Margo_Chester is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 05:27 AM
  #31  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,998
An obvious (?) solution to the price concerns is to have more money to spend. Cut expenses at home. Retrench! Americans drive 12,000 miles per year. At 12mpg and $3.50 per gallon that bill is $3,500.00. At 24mpg and $3.50 per gallon the bill is $1,750. Comments?
GSteed is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 05:38 AM
  #32  
ira
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,545
Hi

>What about the rural regions of France, from the Loire to Provence?

That doesn't take in much territory, as the Loire starts only a few hundred km from Aix-en-Provence.

For "France Profond", I recommend Logis de France
(www.logis-de-france.fr/uk/recherch/index-ca.htm) for the best value.

We select 2* properties with at least 2 chimneys.

>times to go for bargains,

The dead of winter.

I think that mid-April/mid-May and mid-Sept/mid-Oct are the best times of year.

>tips to put in our new photo-rich Fodor's France guide!

Alsace
Dordogne
Gorges du Tarn
Lot and Célé river valleys
(Read "Three Rivers of France"

See my trip reports
Ira Does France (Bordeaux, Dordogne, Paris)
http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...2&tid=34676645

Photos at http://tinyurl.com/sjch4
http://www.kodakgallery.com/I.jsp?c=...&x=0&y=-pla2au

Ira Visits Europe – May, 2007 (Salzburg, Fuessen, Bodensee, Burgundy, Alsace)
http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...2&tid=35014078

Better yet, see Stu Dudley's trip reports.
................................
Hi K,

>Where would you send a friend who wanted to spend between 1-3 days outside of Paris.

Beaune/Dijon
(See www.myhomeindijon.com, www.hotel-grillon.fr)

Auxerre
Strasbourg
Troyes

ira is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 06:08 AM
  #33  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 337
Deauville, Rouen, Honfleur.. all are accessible by train. From Deauville you can go to D-Day cemeteries. May need a car or you can try to catch a tour. All are great trips
susan300 is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 08:06 AM
  #34  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 29
"An obvious (?) solution to the price concerns is to have more money to spend. Cut expenses at home. Retrench! Americans drive 12,000 miles per year. At 12mpg and $3.50 per gallon that bill is $3,500.00. At 24mpg and $3.50 per gallon the bill is $1,750. Comments?"

What kind of cars do you think all Americans drive? HUMMERS! We both drive gas saver vehicles. 2006 Ford Focus 30+MPG- 2006 Ford Ranger 24+ MPG.
Gas here in Arkansas is $3.10 a gallon. You assume to much.


Luther_Brenda is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 08:45 AM
  #35  
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,478
Thanks Katie!

I haven't read all the posts yet, but I will be in France in Sept/Oct for 3 weeks and can't wait to read the tips here on this thread!

Merci!
LowCountryIslander is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 08:47 AM
  #36  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,256
For a 1-3 day trip from Paris I would suggest the lovely town of Metz in the Lorraine area. The TGV train takes 1 1/2 hours for 35 euros each way 1st class premium tickets.

An easy walk from the train station is the 2* Cecil Hotel, which does offer specials in the offseason. Our twin room was 63 euros per night with breakfast free on the weekend (special); weekday the breakfast was 7.70 euros per person.

One of the Fleurie cities in France Metz was also awarded the Illuminiated City prize for its night-time street, square and monument illuminations.

With a lake/river and lots of footpaths, medieval streets, one of the most beautiful concert halls in Europe as well as top quality sports facilities, we found Metz a gem even in February Deborah
DeborahAnn is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 09:02 AM
  #37  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,286
Great thread!
Ronda is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 11:23 AM
  #38  
ira
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,545
Hi K,

Forgot Nancy.
ira is offline  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 11:31 AM
  #39  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 22,063
After having mentioned RailEurope (and the concept of avoiding it), I am thinking that maybe it has commercial ties with Fodor's (perhaps as an advertiser?) and that my suggestion cannot possibly be retained.
kerouac is online now  
Old Mar 20th, 2008, 03:59 PM
  #40  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 4
Q: We will be visiting Paris on Sept10-12. Will arrive by train at Gare de Lyon Sta. Sounds like it is worthwhile to take a local train to the outskirts to save$$ on a B&B. Just need a place to kick back after walking around the city/sites. Any suggestions out there?? Also we can improvise on the food [we like the open air mkts for veggies etc] Sidewalk cafes seem interesting too. Thanxz Dave.
daknlak is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO