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Ways to Save for traveling in Paris

  1. By John
  2. On Nov 13, 2018
  3. Europe
  4. Travel Tips

Poets, artists, playwrights, writers, journalists, and more have all written about their love of this city…and it’s hard not to fall in love with Paris. It’s a place that exudes culture, sophistication, class, and style.

Ways to Save for traveling in Paris

Average cost of food

Expect to pay between 25-40 EUR for dinner at a nice restaurant including wine. Try to avoid the tourist areas, where prices around about 10-30% higher, if you want to save money. Luckily, buying your own food is cheap. There are many bread, cheese, markets, and meat shops throughout the city. It’s common to pick up some ingredients and have a picnic in one of the city’s many parks. Creating your own meal will cost around 9-15 EUR, depending on what you buy and if you get wine.

Eating pre-made sandwiches from the city’s takeaway shops, crepes, or fast food generally costs between 6-10 EUR. If you want to eat at a restaurant (the French are known for their culinary skills, after all!), try doing a “prix-fixe” meal. It’s a set menu that offers you a deal on a 2-3 course meal for about 20 Euros. To save even more money, consider lunch instead of dinner (which, in France, is still typically 2 courses). If you’re cooking for yourself, you can expect to pay about 50 EUR for a week’s worth of groceries (basic staples), but if you find a discount grocer like Aldi or Lidl, you’ll pay way less.

Transportation costs

The Paris public transport system is one of the world’s most comprehensive and efficient. Every other block has a metro (subway) stop. A single-use metro/bus ticket costs 1.90 EUR (2 EUR if you buy it on the bus). A “carnet” of 10 single-use tickets costs about 14.50 EUR, or you can get a day pass for all modes of public transportation (bus, metro, trams, and suburban trains called the RER) for around 11.65 EUR. The day pass, called ParisVisite, also gives you discounts to some major Parisian landmarks.

You can buy tickets at any metro station. (Note: There are cheaper day passes available if you are under 26, as well as discounted prices on weekends and holidays, but they are only explained on the French website. If you can speak passable French, and are under 26, you can ask for those reduced fares instead.) Taxis in the city are expensive (rides cost a minimum of 6.50 EUR regardless of where you are going) and, with the metro running late into the night, there’s little reason to take them. Uber is also a cheaper option than taxis, with a base fare of 1 EUR and costs 0.25 per min/1 EUR per km. The RER train to Charles de Gaulle airport is about 10 EUR and takes about 40 minutes.