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Help meeting friends @ CDG and Paris/Provence lunch/dinner reservations

Help meeting friends @ CDG and Paris/Provence lunch/dinner reservations

Old May 24th, 2014, 07:44 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 40
Help meeting friends @ CDG and Paris/Provence lunch/dinner reservations

I will be arriving at CDG approx. 3 hrs before friends, also from the USA. We are all flying Delta and will arrive at Terminal 2. I wasn't going to check my bag, but now am thinking that I will, so won't be able to meet them at the gate. I also plan on exchanging money and getting our museum passes while I am waiting. Anyway, any suggestions for a good place to meet?

My more important question though, is reservations for meals in France. I have been to Paris 3 times for short trips, and spent 5 days in the countryside around Dijon, and have never worried about finding a great place to eat without reservations. I have to say, though, I haven't been in 15 years. However, in reading the posts here, it seems that to get a meal, especially at dinner, at a good place we may need to do that. We will be in Paris 6/18-6/24 and Provence (basing out of St. Remy) for the next week. I've never had to plan that far in advance for where to eat--any help on whether that is really necessary or not. I don't even know where to start if it is necessary. We will be staying at the Hotel Rue Clement in the St. Germaine area. Also, I'm a little scared of the prices people are saying they pay for lunch, let alone dinner. We were hoping to pay no more than 60 euros for nice dinner, but that may not be possible?
Sorry for the long post, but thanks for any help!
crennaker is offline  
Old May 24th, 2014, 08:12 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Get you museum passes before you leave!

As far as meeting your friends, you'll have to catch them when they pass through customs, as you will not be allow back into the terminals other areas once you go through passport control and customs. And you will not be allowed to hang around in the arrivals area for any length of time, or else the police will get suspicious.

We usually schedule our first lunch or dinner in Paris and do the rest later. One day, or even earlier in the day, is fine, depending on the day. It's much more difficult on the weekends, then during the week.

Lunch is by far the least expensive meal of the day. Just go with the fix priced menu. If hungry in the evening, head to Fish in the 6th.

You might also want to consider downloading the app for Patric Wells' Guide to Paris. She's the best and has a great list of recommendations. It's available on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/new-...516159934?mt=8
Robert2533 is offline  
Old May 24th, 2014, 08:45 PM
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60 euro per person? Including alcohol? I don't think you should have a problem. There are of course any number of hugely costly places, but you would actually need to reserve them, and since you don't sound like you want to plan your meals much in advance, I wouldn't worry about it.

I would not put Fish on my list. At one time I thought it was good, but that was a fairly long time ago.
tuscanlifeedit is offline  
Old May 24th, 2014, 09:59 PM
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>>I would not put Fish on my list
StuDudley is offline  
Old May 24th, 2014, 11:45 PM
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>>>>>I would not put Fish on my list
janisj is online now  
Old May 25th, 2014, 12:28 AM
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If you have time to kill at CDG you can buy your museum pass there:


Also I know I have mentioned it a lot on this forum but I follow Alexander Lobrano's food blog Hungry for Paris to keep up on new choices for food in Paris and all the links on his site are equally good:


His Indexpage give you lots of restaurants to choose from including the ability to choose by neighborhood:

jpie is online now  
Old May 25th, 2014, 03:59 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I rarely reserve places for dinner but I don't go to the few places that are constantly recommended on Fodors, nor in the fashionable expensive areas like St Germain or to those Christian Constant restaurants, etc. over in the 7th. I'm not picky, I usually get good meals and have never paid 60 euro. I just stop into any nearby cafe for lunch. The posts you are talking about are just a different world of people that want to go to some of the most popular expensive restaurants in chic areas, that's all, and they spend a lot on such meals. Of course you don't "have" to do that, but if you want to go to those restaurants that are constantly named in the threads on here, you will.

When you say you don't know how to do it, not sure what you mean. It's possible your hotel can do it for you, or the restaurant has a website. If you really want some place, you could call, of course. And there are some websites now that list quite a few places, like www.lafourchette.com.
Christina is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 06:54 AM
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I wouldn´t necessarily wait 3 hours at the airport, it might be even longer (or less) if someone´s flight is delayed. But if I were to choose a meeting location, it might be the lobby bar of the hotel Sheraton in Terminal 2.

Money exchange should always be done at an ATM. As a backup, to the very unlikely possibility that ATMs might not be available, use one of the many exchange bureaus located throughout the airport. Their rates of exchange will not be as good as using ATMs. However, using exchange bureaus, as a last resort, will be no more expensive than attempting to obtain euros in advance at home. As an additional backup, credit cards are accepted by taxis and at any of the service windows selling train tickets into Paris.

There are a number of wonderful restaurants within a 5 minute walk of your hotel. One of the best crêperies in Paris, Crêperie des Canettes is just down the street and around the corner on rue des Canettes.

They have a two course crêpe dinner, including cider for 18.50€. However, try the walnut/iceberg lettuce salad for an additional 5€. Served chilled, this is always one of the most refreshing salads I have ever eaten. I always arrive early, around 7pm, and do not reserve. We try to eat here once a month as our family loves crêpes.

Otherwise, I always reserve when dinning out. You might check with www.lafourchette.com for not only nearby suggestions but discounts as well. Currently running promotions, up to 40% off the Carte, and near your hotel are:

La Boussole
12, rue Guisarde 75006

La Bastide d'Opio
9, rue Guisarde 75006

Le Séraphin
5, rue Mabillon 75006

If you are looking for something a little more up scale but not overly stuffy, I might suggest these which are nearby and will generally require reserving well in advance, usually several days at least:

Joséphine "Chez Dumonet"
117 Rue du Cherche-Midi 75006
01 45 48 52 40

Les Botanistes
11 Rue Chomel, 75007
01 45 49 04 54

Les Papilles
30 rue Gay Lussac 75005
01 43 25 20 79

I would plan on 30€ to 45€ per person at these restaurants excluding wine. The best way to approach Joséphine Chez Dumonet would be to order one entrée, one plat, and one dessert. The portions are large and they encourage sharing; doing so will keep you within the stated budget range.

You might want to consult several well-know food blogs for ideas as well:

Sarastro is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 07:12 AM
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>>As a backup, to the very unlikely possibility that ATMs might not be available, use one of the many exchange bureaus
StuDudley is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 08:35 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
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the banks ran out of cash when everyone used them instead of the ATMs.

I´m not following this Stu. Perhaps I falsely assumed that banks put cash into their ATMs and if the cash was no longer placed into ATMs, it certainly would have been available at the counter. And unless exchange bureaus actually obtained their cash from the empty ATMs, thus cutting off their supply, the bureaus would certainly have been able to quickly bump their on-hand reserves of cash.

Luckily, credit cards still offer the same backup option even if no cash is available.
Sarastro is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 08:43 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
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1) meet at the hotel
2) take a little cash and use the ATMs, planning for a strike that happened for one week 13 years ago seems a little careful
3) book the first meal in the evening
4) Euro 60 with two glasses for one person. If you pay more than that you may be "spending" more than you are "eating".
5) I'd seldom book because I like to find little places when the posh places are full but weekends are tighter on booking
6) I'd expect to pay E15 at lunch (including jug wine) and E30 for supper (including wine off the list) but it helps being mainly vegetarian if you want to add meat it might add up to an extra E10 to the meal. If you want to pay for a taste menu then E65 is possible and then there are the crazy places which are best avoided.
bilboburgler is online now  
Old May 25th, 2014, 08:55 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I would never hang around the airport for 3 hours waiting for anyone.

I never get the Museum Pass before I leave home - costs more and it's one more thing to lug across the ocean. Incredibly easy to pick it up once in Paris.

I would never pay 60 euros for lunch anywhere. I rarely pay that for dinner.

I would never feel obliged to make a dinner reservations in Paris, except maybe by walking by earlier in the day and talking to the staff.

I don't feel any of your worries are worth worrying about.
StCirq is online now  
Old May 25th, 2014, 08:58 AM
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>>I´m not following this Stu.
StuDudley is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 09:01 AM
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According to the reports before we arrived, cash at CGD and the Nice airport was not available.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 09:16 AM
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StuDudley is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 11:15 AM
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Numbers of strikes by country, interesting reading

bilboburgler is online now  
Old May 25th, 2014, 11:18 AM
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Stu's post makes me feel old. We were in London on the way to Paris and read the same story about the armored car greve.

I found that the. Bureau de change at Marks and Spencers gave the best rates, so we swapped a couple of hundred pounds for euros before we left. Within two days, the ATM's were reloaded with cash.

But it seems like yesterday! Thirteen years!
Ackislander is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 11:55 AM
Join Date: Jan 2010
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I agree that you have little or nothing to worry about. Bring enough euros with you to pay for a cab from the airport to your hotel and a little extra. Get additional from an ATM when you arrive in the city.

Do not wait for your friends at CDG. Take a cab to your hotel and meet them there. You will have time to pick up cash and museum passes before they arrive.

Sixty euro is plenty for dinner. You won't need that much for lunch. Besides, it is unlikely that you will want two three course meals a day. On days when you have a full lunch, have a light dinner and vice versa. I swear by the Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurants. They are good food for value and the 3-course menu is Euro 35 or less. In your area, or within easy travel distance are

Fish (we eat there each time in Paris and like it very much)
Le Timbre
Bistro Belhara
Cafe Constant
Les Cocottes
La Regalade St. Honore

Have your hotel make reservations for you. And have a wonderful time in Paris and in Provence.
mamcalice is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 12:38 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Using any currency exchange operation, at the airport or elsewhere, will cost you an arm and a leg. Read the NYTimes Haggler piece,"The Computerized Voice That Wasn’t", about exchanging currency at the American Express foreign-exchange counter at the airport in Rome. The cost of the exchange was 33%, after commissions, fees and a terrible exchange rate.

ATMs being out of Euros by the end of the weekend is not unusual, depending on the ATMs location. We've encountered it in Paris, Madrid, Barcelona and any place during fiesta. The ATMs are not refilled until Monday morning, except when Monday also happens to be a banking holiday. Then you have to wait until Tuesday or search around for an ATM in a residential area outside of the busy central hub.
Robert2533 is offline  
Old May 25th, 2014, 02:46 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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>>But it seems like yesterday! Thirteen years!
StuDudley is offline  

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