Monday, May 10, 2010

Getting ready for Paris trip?

I had wonderful experiences in Paris. Its a great place and you must visit at least once in a life time. I hope my below points would help to avoid some surprises during your Paris tour...

- Best way to visit Paris is using Metro. If you are planning to stay for few weeks, its worth to buy book of 10 metro tickets which will save you some euros.

- When you are walking on Champse-Elysee, you can have sandwiches from road side stalls. They are tasty and worth each penny.

- Most of the non-veg dishes are with Beef and Fish.

- Alcohol is cheap.

- At least try to greet people in French and they will try their best to assist you in English.

- Do not purchase Disneyland Paris tickets on its English version website when you are in Paris. Disney charge you as per UK (in GBP) rates, which is unnecessarily expensive, where as same kind of ticket can be found in French version of Disney website for 10 euro lesser the UK cost. Disney continue to make fun of you by expecting you to read and understand terms and conditions written in French. At some point you feel Micky laughing at you!

- At least Paris doesn't have telephones which can accept coin or credit cards!! So if you want to make a local call you must have telephone card purchased (starts with 7.5 Euro) in one of TABACs  found in many paris streets.

- Not all public automated toilets are free.

- If you are expecting your hotel reception will speak in English with you, thats your fault.

- Sunday is like a dead day in Paris. All most all the stores/pharmacies will be closed! if you have planned to have food near your home/hotel, you may prefer to die, instead trying really hard to find out 'open' restaurant.

- In most of the shows/planetariums...etc French is the default language, and you can't expect English.

- Louvre museum has multiple entries but no one knows. (including Paris residents :) Everybody stand in the big line near popular glass traingle!

- If you don't like crowd, It may be bad idea to plan visiting popular places in Paris during weekends.You will have to discover the tourist attraction place from the crowd. Specially, First Sunday of every month, most of the (state) museums will have free entry. If you enjoy standing in 2 or 3 hours long line, you can dare to step out of your home/hotel otherwise visit beautiful gardens in Paris.

- As euro international credit card, never ever go for "HDFC Forex Card plus" it doesn't always work on all online shops and HDFC demonstrated its unmatching irresponsiblility in customer support activities when you try to contact them over web/email.

- Better take vaseline with you, otherwise you will end up buying one vaseline tube for 3 euros!

- When you go to any cinema make sure it is V.O.S.T or VO (that means english version). Otherwise next 2 hours you won't know people laughing at you or on a joke in French from the movie.

- You may not feel all museums/tourist places are great! so do enough research before stepping inside by paying 8+ euros of entry fee. Otherwise you will feel museum sculptures looking at you as a dumb piece of stone.

- Your hotel may not have 3 pin plugs, so you can plan to buy 2-to-3 converter from castorama stalls for your mobile/laptop chargers.

- This is very important, Paris is a very romantic place and if you are married, go with your wife :) 

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