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With a history dating back 2000 years, some of the best cuisine in the world, superb art at almost every street corner, cultural sophistication and tons of shopping, Paris remains as one of the top tourist destinations of Europe. However, you could be spending a lot of money because of the high cost of living and a lot of time because of all the tourists unless you follow these handy travel tips.

Go in The Off-Season

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Summer is when everybody wants to go to Paris because of the long daylight hours and the superb weather. This is also the city’s most expensive and crowded time. Avoid the high prices and the long lines by going during the fall or spring, when the weather is still acceptable but prices are still reasonable. If you want to save the most money and don’t mind constant rain and the threat of snow, winter is practically empty and rewards you with the lowest costs.

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hostelChoose Vacation Rentals

A hotel chain will have all the comforts that your used to in modern soulless surroundings and at high prices. Live as the locals do by going for one of the numerous accommodation in Paris. You’ll be surrounded by French people rather than foreign tourists and can take advantage of laundry facilities, free unlimited Internet, and a built-in kitchen for you can cook your own meals to save money on restaurants.

Eat at the Market

You definitely want to eat in one or more of the city’s restaurants so you can sample magnificent French food. But if you want to save money when you eat, visit one of the city’s many food markets. Nearly every neighborhood will have one at least one a week but one of the best is at Rue Montorgueil. It’s not unusual for even the locals to buy a baguette, some cheese, and some wine to consume at a local park. You can do the same.

Get a Museum Pass

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Paris Museum Pass

From one of the great art collections of the world, such as the Louvre, to the Arc de Triomphe, Paris has a plethora of museums and monuments. If you’re planning on visiting just a few of them, spring for a Paris Museum Pass, which allows you to enter over 60 monuments and museums for free. As a bonus, you can skip the line, which alone can save you hours. Unfortunately, the Museum Pass does not work with the Eiffel Tower.

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The Paris Museum

Skip Paris Visite

You’ll see signs and advertisements touting Paris Visite as a cost-effective way to save on transportation costs in the city. But unless you plan on spending most of your vacation on the Metro, these passes will actually end up costing you more money. The city is one where you can easily walk to most destinations with an occasional ride on the subway. For convenience, you can buy a “carnet” of 10 single-use tickets, which saves you about 20 percent off the cost of a single-use ticket.