Paris may be one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world, but this doesn’t mean that organizing a trip is always easy. In fact, it can be just the opposite!
One of the world’s most iconic destinations, there are an overwhelming amount of places to see and things to do, so often the most difficult thing about Paris is knowing where to start.
If you find yourself in this boat, we’ve put together the following 5 tips to make a trip to Paris a lot easier for you.
4 Tips For an Easier Trip to Paris
Have a Theme For Your Vacation
Paris is a big city, and tourist attractions here number in the thousands. Therefore, unless you have an unlimited budget and don’t have to return home anytime soon, it’s best to have a theme for your vacation.
A theme (based on your interests) can be a great way to narrow down your itinerary and take some of the stress out of trying to see everything. Because even Paris locals haven’t managed to see everything; this goal is not realistic.
And Paris has some fabulous themes! From fashion to food, art to architecture, museums to marketplaces, even WWII, this can help you identify the best attractions for you.
Having a theme for your vacation doesn’t limit your experience in Paris, it just gives it depth, which makes it even more satisfying.
Make Hotel Reservations Early
Unless you’ve been to Paris before, and fully understand the ins and outs of this city, it is best to make hotel reservations early. And, with over 27 million tourists last year, the hotels who don’t sell out tend to run at high occupancy.
Booking early not only gives you a sense of security in knowing that you have a room, but also allows you to plan your vacation better since you can map out your itinerary based on where you’re staying.
Finding a good hotel in Paris is quite easy. A google search for where to stay in Paris will give you a wide variety of hotels across all the arrondissements.
Pro Tip: It’s a good idea to have a general idea of your itinerary in mind when you’re choosing your base, as Paris doesn’t really have one central location. There are twenty arrondissements in Paris, each close to their own range of attractions.
Learn a few French Words and Phrases
Google has made things really easy for travelers. You can use it to live translate, as well as make out street signs and other labels with ease.
However, it never hurts to learn a few words such as how to say hello, thankyou, and excuse me. There’s a marked difference in an exchange where you’re able to look someone in the eye as opposed to shoving your phone under their face!
Learning a few French words and phrases will go a long way to creating a better rapport with the French people, and as a result get a better feel of Paris. It also adds to the experience since language is an integral part of French culture. Click here to learn basic French words in easy steps.
Have a Well Defined Budget
Paris is one of those cities that can bankrupt you if you don’t have a well defined budget. You can definitely travel in Paris on a budget, but in general it’s an expensive city where it’s not uncommon to overshoot your budget out of excitement.
For safety, have an extra amount set aside, and then give yourself a bit of a buffer. If it’s the conversion to Euro’s that you’re having trouble with, download an app like CalConvert so you don’t have to run currency conversions in your head.
There are also apps which allow you to track what you’re spending as you travel, and this can be a great way to know how well you’re adhering to your budget.
There’s nothing worse than getting home to a massive credit card bill and realizing you won’t be taking another holiday for a while!
OUR FAVORITE PARIS GUIDES. CLICK PHOTO TO LOOK INSIDE ↓
I’ve never gone with a theme- but with arrondissement in mind. And, I book a small hotel (yes, it lacks certain Americanize amenities) to further acquaint me with the ‘neighborhood’. And, while my French is rusty (maybe flaky is a better choice :-) ), I can manage to get around.
Traveling with an arrondissement in mind is a great strategy :) There’s so much to do and see in each, and smaller, family run hotels really are a great way to immerse yourself into the city on a local level.
Thanks for sharing your experiences Roy :)