Shopping in Paris -- etiquette/customs?

Old Mar 13th, 2002, 12:31 PM
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JohnG-I think they are talking about Paris not Pennsylvania.
Old Mar 13th, 2002, 01:31 PM
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In the department stores and chain grocery stores, pick up and paw away.

Stores that are U.S. or British in origin (like Body Shops), pick up and paw away.

Shops in tourist neighborhoods with tourist-type stuff (postcards, "my grandma went to Paris and all I got..." t-shirts, dribble glasses), pick up and paw away.

Convenience stores (whether chain or local owner), pick up and paw away.

Flea markets, pick up and paw away.

Green grocers: this is tricky. A green grocer, or merchants at street markets, USUALLY don't want customers to touch their goods (bit racy, there); you tell them what you want, and they get it. That's a little looser now, and lots of vendors at street markets don't mind customers handling the merchandise; stand back and see how other patrons are acting for what's acceptable.

Stores that cater to the youth are definitely pick up and paw.

Small specialty stores (book shops, antique stores, needlework boutiques) in residential neighborhoods are 99% of the time - don't touch. Greet the owner, and tell him/her what you need. Oftentimes, they'll bring out a rack of something or show you to a display, and THEN you can paw away...or not.

Even if you screw up and paw what you shouldn't, you'll serve no jail time. You may get the LOOK, which...just get used to it. Everybody who lives in or visits Paris, eventually, gets the LOOK.

Old Mar 14th, 2002, 01:45 AM
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My expereince with the Chanel store was a few years ago (5-6 to be exact) but one of my coworkers tried to buy a lipstick there recently and they were as welcoming as a corpse. The day I visited the store could have been closed for any number of reasons. There were people in the store, but no one came to the door to tell me the shop was closed and it was during posted open times. I recently was in the Chanel store in Copenhagen and they were very nice, and all I did buy was a lipstick. So who knows....both times I was dressed in sweats so maybe it appears that I have no discretionary income...

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