As the number of tourists visiting Paris continue to grow, so are the ways visitors can save big during their trip. When diving into the figures, taking a frugal approach to Paris becomes absolutely necessary. Over 17.95 million tourists descended upon the French capital in 2018, which makes it the most visited city on the continent. International travelers spent $14.06 billion in Paris during the same year, which was a noticeable increase from the $13.05 billion spent in 2017. This breaks down to a $1,450 average over 7 days for solo travelers & $2,604 for a week long Parisian getaway for couples. The average hotel costs $120 a night, and daily personal spending ranges from $57 to $82 per person. Even though these are intimidating figures, there’s still hope for touring Paris on a budget.
Despite being known as one of the most expensive cities to explore in Europe, visiting Paris doesn’t have to break the bank. From avoiding known tourist traps to shopping strategically, a little preparation goes a long way. Now that this city is no longer shrouded in mystery, everything users need to know can be found online. Unfortunately, uncovering quality information is harder than most people think. Thanks to the staggering amount of visitors this city hosts annually, the internet is flooded with tips on how to survive Paris. While many of these warnings are redundant, a few of them have the potential to help users save big.
To showcase what visitors actually need to know, we compiled this list of the best ways to save in Paris. Preserving your budget doesn’t mean being miserable, so none of these tips sacrifice the basic amenities. Going on vacation means indulging in at least a little bit of luxuries, so learn which ones to do without. There’s more to this gorgeous city than most visitors imagine, so discover how to explore strategically to rake in the savings!
Best Ways to Save While Visiting Paris
Tip #3: Take the Airport Buses – Instead of getting ripped off by ambitious cab drivers, tourists have two options when arriving at the airport. The first is the “RoissyBus”, which takes tourists from any terminal to the Place del’Opéra for just €12.50 per person. It only takes 60 minutes, and leaves every 15 minutes from 6am to 8:45pm. From there, buses leave every 20 minutes from 8:45pm to 12:30am. For those who want a classier option, Le Bus Direct buses can’t be beaten. It costs €17 per person(€30 round-trip), and takes users directly to various tourist attractions. These transport fees are noticeably cheaper than a taxi, so arrive at your destination in style!
Tip #2: Claim Your Refund – Unbeknownst to most visitors, big purchases qualify for surprisingly advantageous refunds. Non-EU citizens who spend €175 or more at any store are entitled to a 12% cash refund. This is available at a number of locations, so always ask the employees before making a major purchase. These refunds can add up quickly, which allows tourists to maximize their buying power in Paris!
Tip #1: Take Advantage of the 1st Sunday Deals – On special days, a wide array of attractions and museums are free to visit. Every first Sunday of the month, visitors can tour all the major museums without paying an entry fee. The Louvre is also free during the first Sundays, and tourists under the age of 26 get in without charge on Friday evenings. To avoid lines at this revered attraction, enter through the Carrousel de Louvre entrance to skip right to the ticket counter. There are plenty of ways to save on the major attractions, so ask around to find out the most advantageous times to visit!