City of lights, city of love,
city of shopping!
One of the most exciting things about the
city is the fact that it is one of the fashion capitals of the
world. Shopping in Paris is an experience, and if you're a
slave to fashion, this city will make you feel like you've died and
gone to heaven, where all of the angels are incredibly stylish.
Pull out your wallets and put away your outdated wardrobes! Nothing
feels better than telling your friends: "Oh this? I bought it
Euro? What's a
Most countries within the European union now use the euro, which is
great because it means that when you're travelling from one country
to another, you often usually won't need to worry about converting
your money to a new system each time. Some European countries,
however, do not use the Euro. For instance, countries within the
United Kingdom, like England and Scotland, and some Nordic
countries use other forms of currency. Make sure you to include
this in your research before visiting other countries.
The downside to the euro is that it's worth more than the
American dollar, so your money doesn't always go as far in Europe
as it might in America. Generally items are priced accordingly (ex:
a dress that might be $40 might be priced at 30 euros) but you will
need to be mindful of your spending so that you don't miscalculate
how much money is actually escaping your bank account.
The euro is worth roughly 1.3 American dollars, but that rate
fluctuates often, so be sure to check periodically to make sure
you're aware of the conversion rate. One good site to check the
conversion rate is www.xe.com
Look out for
One day we had a wonderful dream where
city-wide sales were state-regulated and lasted for six weeks at a
time. Then we woke up and realized that it wasn't a dream, it was a
memory of Paris.
That's right. State-regulated sales that last for six weeks at a
time. Huge savings in stores all over the city. Let that sink in
for a moment.
There are two "sale seasons" in Paris, one during
the winter and the other in the summer. The winter sale period
starts in the beginning of January and the summer sale period
starts at the end of June or beginning of July. During these
times, stores may slash their prices anywhere from 30 to 60% so
it's a great time to pick up some of those "must-have" items.
Souvenirs: What? I have to
buy things for other people?
Well, you don't have to... but since you got to go
to Paris and all your family and friends had to just travel
vicariously through your facebook updates, it might be nice to
bring them back a little something.
It's easy to find souvenirs all over the city-- you can find
miniatures of famous monuments (particularly the Eiffel Tower and
Notre Dame), t-shirts, bags, postcards and other touristy items all
over the city. Just keep your eyes open any time you're near a
particularly "touristy" monument.
If you're looking for something a little more
creative, try an original piece of artwork or a box of amazing
French chocolates. Artists set up shop in Montmarte, so look out
for stalls selling sketches and paintings of the city. As for
chocolate, we recommend checking out Cacoa et Chocolat. This famous
chocolate bar has three locations throughout the city: 29 rue de
Buci, 63 rue de Saint Louis and 36 rue Vieille du
Our Favorite Shopping
Les Halles & Rue de
The area around Les Halles offers one of the best shopping
experiences in Paris. With lots of little boutiques featuring new
designers and trendy brands, this area is youth-oriented, so
college students with a shopping addiction will find some
incredible options. Definitely don't miss rue Montorgueil, a street
overflowing with shopping options, including one of our favorite
spots: Hippy Market.
The Champs-Elysées is one of the most famous shopping streets in
Paris, and for good reason. Taking a stroll down through this
beautiful area will give you access to luxury designer stores as
well as trendy international chains, so there's something available
for everyone, no matter what his or her budget may be.
Galeries Lafayette and Printemps,
and Bon Marché
American department stores will never feel the same after you've
taken a day to explore some of the enormous department stores in
Paris. These shopping Meccas over so many items to ogle over that
you may need a whole day just to explore. We're particularly fond
of Bon Marché, not only because it's just down the street from St.
John's Paris campus, but also because it's a beautiful store with
luxury clothing, accessories and food (yes, that's right, it houses
a luxury grocery store).
If you're looking for that one-of-a-kind object that's sure to draw
attention, look no further than the Saint-Ouen Flea Market.
Established during the 19th century, this popular market is a must
for all shoppers who don't mind doing a little searching in order
to find that perfect item.