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Seniors discounts in Paris? Best places for ladies toilets in Paris

Seniors discounts in Paris? Best places for ladies toilets in Paris

Old Feb 11th, 2005, 10:18 AM
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Seniors discounts in Paris? Best places for ladies toilets in Paris

Please bear with me for my habit of posting my questions separately, but they occur to me as I plan this holiday.

Are there discounts for seniors in Paris as there are in Canada and US?

Also a friend told me that as a lady visiting Paris it would be advisable to wear dresses or skirts rather than the usual trouser as some of the "Ladies" toilets in the small bistro/restaurants are the 'hole in the floor' type. Any comments on this, and also the availability of ""Ladies" toilets, and where the best ones are would be appreciated. Thanks
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 10:32 AM
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There are senior discounts at some, if not all, museums. Not sure about other types of places.

There aren't a whole lot of "Turkish" toilets in Paris anymore - certainly lots fewer than in the countryside. You won't run into them often if at all. I don't think you need to change what you wear because of this.

A lot of people here recommend using the facilities in MacDonald's to be sure of good bathrooms. I've never done it, but it seems to be a propular notion.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 10:35 AM
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The "Ladies" that are customary in the U.S. will most often be found in museums, department stores and other establishments that have a 'modernized' appearance. The "Turkish" style (hope that's an acceptable term) are usually found in some cafes and bars, older buildings...

There are very acceptable public restrooms in the park along the Champs Elysee (complete with the matron), down the stairs off the parvis in front of Notre Dame (face cathedral, look off to the right for a statue, the steps go down from there), and at the foot of the steps that lead down from Sacre Coeur (off to the right side, not the frontside).
And the street-side mechanical toilets are a couple of small coins (0.40€?) and clean themselves automatically (tan or gray-colored metal booths).

I don't think there are "Senior" discounts for things like food services and don't recall any for museum entry fees, etc. Could be some for train travel (age 60+)...
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 10:42 AM
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You could try this web site for the bathrooms of Paris! The main index lists many many countries and ciries!! Great fun, too! Larger hotels with lobby bars are always a good bet.

I can't remember seeing any disocunts for non-resident seniors anywhere in France, except maybe on trains and I'm not even sure about that..it might have been Belgium that offered that discount.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 10:42 AM
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Would have been nice if I posted the link!!

http://www.thebathroomdiaries.com/france/paris.html
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 11:32 AM
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I was able to find bathrooms fairly easily when I needed one. Some public facilities, like in a park, cost a small amount and had attendants monitoring them.

Though I'd seen them in Venice, never happened upon the floor-style in Paris. And even so, I am perfectly able to manage pants in the situation (I never wear a skirt or dress anyway).

Definitely restrooms are in museums & restaurants, places you will naturally be anyway, just remember to use the facilities when you come across the opportunity.

For a funny read, get the book "Going Abroad"... more than you could ever imagine about toilets and traveling.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 11:48 AM
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Automatic street toilet modules: When you put your money in the coin slot, the door automatically opens (just like on Star Trek) and you step on a wet, freshly sanitized floor. In fact the whole toilet is sprayed with disinfectant after each use, which means the seat will be wet. Once you've paid your money you have 15 minutes to finish; after 15 minutes the door will automatically open and expose you to passing pedestrians. A lot of travelers think they perhaps can use these toilets for free by sneaking in while someone else is leaving. DON'T DO THIS! If you don't pay, after the door closes the toilet thinks it is empty and will clean itself while you are in there and you can expect the toilet bowl to disappear into the wall while you are sprayed with disinfectant.

Also, I haven't gone searching for this myself, but in some corner of Place de la Madeleine is a staircase that goes below street level to what are supposed to be very beautiful public toilets.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 11:56 AM
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<< you don't pay, after the door closes the toilet thinks it is empty and will clean itself while you are in there and you can expect the toilet bowl to disappear into the wall while you are sprayed with disinfectant. >>

Gawd! What a scare that would be!!!
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:17 PM
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At least twice, I found the toilets at public places in Paris were not equipped with toilet paper. So be prepared for that.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:19 PM
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good point, willT
Actually I find that a lot when I travel, including in the US, so I always have an extra packet of tissues in my tote, plus the wrapped hand wipes.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:35 PM
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st-cirq,

one of the monsieur pamplemousse books (great fun) describes in some detail just what happens if you're stuck in an automated toilet when the cleaning cycle begins. not good!
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:40 PM
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At the Maeght Foundation in St Paul de Vence, the toilet astounded me when a little box popped out below the lid top and it started cleaning the seat. It was so surrealistic, that I had my husband go in after me to watch this undulation motion .
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:42 PM
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I'm sure it will never come to that, but I'd a lot rather be in there getting sprayed with the door closed that sittin' in there, not done, when the door opens..I have never had run across the turkish toilet when in Paris, thank goodness..I have weak thighs, can't aim, and they don't have grab bars...oh no!!!! " Help, I've fallen and I can't get up!!!"
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:53 PM
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sorry undulating!!!
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 12:53 PM
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Suze--that "Going Abroad" book is great! I bought it after my first trip abroad and I couldn't figure out the toilet. One of those places you put a coin in and self cleans after you leave. When I was inside, I first looked to see how to flush, couldn't find a button/knob, so didn't go because I didn't know how to flush. I found that book after that trip and I can't tell you how many friends have borrowed it and we have all had good laughs!

The only hole in the ground toilet that we have come across was in Florence. This was after our dd said she really had to go, so we found a restroom, she saw the hole and declared that she did not have to go that bad, lol! She was 8 at the time.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 01:26 PM
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I've also never seen a senior discount for anything in Paris, except train fares (regular trains, not the metro). There are some senior discounts at some movie theaters and places, but not just for tourists based on age, they are for residents who get a special card from their local mayor (mairie) for various reasons (disability, large family, unemployed, etc). I've never seen a blanket senior discount at a museum, myself, only ones for children or residents with social service cards, but I am not in that age bracket so maybe didn't notice the details well.

I've only seen one of those Turkish toilets (hole in floor) once in all the times I've been going to Paris over 20 years or so -- that was in an old arty movie house. I don't usually go to restrooms a lot in restaurants or bistros, I'll admit, but I often do in cafes in mid-afternoon and have never seen one in any of them. This is really a non-issue. I use them in stores and museums, mostly, or the cafe at lunch -- I don't go a lot, though. I would only go to McDonalds if desperate as they are very crowded and often filthy -- especially in the central area of Paris, where you may have to buy something to use them, anyway.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 01:29 PM
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Christina, I once read Polidor had one???
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 01:33 PM
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Christina, I envy your bladder capacity.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 02:34 PM
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I think you have more than enough toilet information now, but for a little more about senior discounts:

Discounts are usually reserved for those with a special European Union card -- showing residency in Europe (sorry, I don't know specifically what that card is). We asked several times when we saw a senior rate posted. Some ticket sellers would go ahead and sell us one since we asked, others asked for the card, others simply said "are you from Europe?" and then deny the discount.
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Old Feb 11th, 2005, 02:38 PM
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My parents got discounts at museums all over Paris many, many times. Perhaps because my dad speaks fluent French they didn't know he was a foreigner, though.
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