It’s common knowledge that Paris is a relatively expensive city. For example, I’ve seen restaurants charge 3.50 Euro for a glass of water with dinner. Hotels can often run very pricey as well, and of course the closer to the city center you’d like to stay, the more expensive it will be. Here are some ways you can save money while traveling to Paris on a budget.
Hotel Flor Rivoli:
Most of the accommodations that are very central can be outrageously priced. However there are a few hidden gems that I have come across. The first is Hotel Flor Rivoli (I’ve linked the official hotel website, though I found better rates using hotels.com) It is in the 1st arrondissement, smack dab in the city center. It is located on Rue Rivoli, a side street that I actually walked right passed, the first time I visited. It is a very small hotel and it isn’t by any means extravagant. However, it is clean, safe, the staff is very friendly and helpful, and the price for the location is great. I paid roughly 110.00 per night, while hotels near by are ranging from 150, all the way up to 500.00. It is extremely close the Louvre, Notre Dame, The Seine, both RER and Metro stations,a small grocery store, and The Latin Quarter. There are a couple of other hotels nearby that I’ve come across during my research like the Hotel Montpensier Paris for around 95.00 a night, but these hotels do not have as good of a rating as Hotel Flor Rivoli, and since I haven’t stayed there I can’t vouch for them. Another option is to check out Airbnb. You can rent some beautiful accommodations and even have the perk of an expert on Paris in the next room! (Read my post about Airbnb.)
If you stay somewhere central, like Hotel Flor Rivoli, you will be able to save money by walking just about everywhere. Walking is a great way to explore the city, anyway. If you do need to get somewhere that is further away, take the Metro. Read my post on the RATP system in Paris. A metro ticket is about 1 euro 80. This is must cheaper than a cab which can run you 10 euro. As you can see in the image below, the nearest Metro stop to Hotel Flor Rivoli, is literally 15 steps from the front door.
(Metro Stop Nearest Hotel Flor Rivoli – View from Room)
I love food. So believe me when i say, some of the things I’ve eaten in Paris rank up there with the best things I’ve eaten in my life. Having said that, a delicious dinner in Paris can, but does not have to tank your wallet. I definitely recommend splurging on escargot at a nice place once in awhile, but some of the most delicious things I ate in Paris were cheap. I ate a whole bunch of sandwiches. They can be found almost anywhere, are usually a decent price (around 5 euro), and are fresh and flavorful!
I got a made to order crepe for three euro, for breakfast on the go one morning. I filled it with Nutella, of course.
There happened to be a bread festival going on near Notre Dame when I was there, so before heading to Versailles for the day we picked up some pastries for around 5 Euro to eat on the train.
McDonalds: This isn’t somewhere I would eat all the time, but visiting a Mickey D’s in another country can actually be pretty interesting. They have a lot of different items that we don’t have in the U.S. In Paris, they have a McCafe section which includes french macaroons and other delicious pastries. It can be a decent option in a pinch, cheap, and can be fun to compare it with your experience from home.
The grocery store is another great option. I probably stopped at the little grocery store outside Hotel Flor Rivoli once a day. Whether it be for a bottle of water, a piece of fruit, wine. It was extremely convenient and budget friendly. Another positive is you can pick up basic hygiene items here as well, in case you forget something.
While Paris is commonly known as very expensive (and yes it can be) it is still doable on a budget! Check out my post about my budget in Paris.
What are your favorite money saving hacks in Paris?