How to do Paris on a Budget

I've just returned from a trip to Paris & like many of the travelers who have gone before me, I have fallen in love with it. I've never experienced anything like it. (Paris was actually on my travel bucket list and I'm still in awe that I’ve actually been) So, if you're reading this and asking yourself How can I get to Paris without breaking the bank?  The answer is read this post and then go pack.

I know what you're thinking, "I wanna go to Paris too, but it's soo expensive."  Well, I am here to tell you that it is not, and does not have to be expensive. It is completely possible to travel on a budget and still get a taste of luxury.

Flights to Paris, France

The main question I have been getting is how much was the flight and I'm excited to say it was only $400 (instead of the usual $1300) with Delta Airlines. How? Delta had a huge sale to Europe a couple months ago and Paris was one of the cities included in the sale, so when I saw it listed for 1/3 of the price it usually is I booked it immediately.

Pro Tip: Subscribe to email lists of airlines near you that way you'll know when there's a sale going on.

How to Find Budget Accommodation in Paris

We stayed in a cute AirBNB apartment near the city center. Paris has 20 arrondissements (neighborhoods) and the smaller the number the closer you are to the city center. I highly recommend staying inside of the 20 arrondissements because venturing outside of it can get a little costly.

Also, try to avoid staying near the airport or Disneyland Paris as they are both far outside the city center.

Getting Around Paris on a Budget

The metro is the best way to get around Paris! There is a metro station on almost every corner in Paris. Each time you use the metro it is 1.90 euro, but you can save money by purchasing a carnet of 10 tickets for 16 euro. There is also the option to get a multi day metro ticket known as the Paris Visite Pass which is what we did and it was very beneficial as we got unlimited rides on the metro, RER train, and the bus.

Don't let the thought of taking the metro intimidate you. It's very simple, efficient, quick and kind of fun. I used my google maps app and selected the train option to tell me which metro we needed to take. This can also be used to find out which bus to take. There are also maps on the wall in the metro station that show the connections, so after a few rides I was familiar with the process and could just look at the map on the wall to find out how to get to our next destination.

If you really want to save money, you can get around the city completely free by walking. 

Pro Tip: If flying into Charles de Gaulle airport (CDG), take the train into the city. I highly recommend this option because taxis in Paris are very expensive. Also, if you plan on using a multi-day pass it is very important that you purchase them in advance that way they can be mailed to you before your trip and you can start using them immediately upon arrival instead of paying out of pocket.

Things to do in Paris for Free & on a Budget

Paris has so many historic museums, monuments and buildings such as the Notre Dame Cathedral, Arc de Triomphe, The Musee de Louvre, Eiffel Tower, Sacre-Coeur. You can go and look at them completely free, but if you want to go inside of them it'll cost.

The good news is that some of the museums have free admission. For example, the Musee d'Orsay and the Musee national Picasso are free every Sunday all year long. The Louvre is also free every Sunday from October 1st until March 31st. Visiting on free days is a great way to save money as the Louvre alone costs 15 euro per person.

Money saving tip: If you're planning to visit multiple museums or monuments it is definitely worth it to purchase a pass. The pass allows free and discounted entry. There are 3 different passes, The Paris Passlib', The Paris Museum Pass, and the Paris Pass.

The Paris Museum Pass

•    Unlimited entry to 50+ museums, monuments, and attractions in Paris

•    It is very cost effective at 48 euro for two days, 62 euro for four days or 74 euro for six days

Paris Passlib'

•    Priority Access to attractions, museums, monuments

•    Allows you to skip the line so you don't have to wait, which is nice because lines get really long

•    Cruise on seine River

•    Unlimited rides on public transportation

•    Prices start at 109 euro for an adult 2 day pass, but there are discounts for children

The Paris Pass

•    Entry to top museums, monuments, and attractions

•    Bus Tour

•    unlimited travel on metro, RER train, and the bus

•    fast track entry to skip the line at museums

•    Prices start at 135 euro for an adult 2-day pass, but there are discounts for teens and children

Diam Johnson

Diam is a travel blogger at From Diam With Love, who aims to highlight the ease of travel while encouraging everyone to follow their travel dreams. She provides useful tips on how to get a taste of luxury on a budget. She is obsessed with all things travel and is always planning her next trip. She has been to 31 states, 14 countries, 2 countries, and many many islands. You can find Diam wandering on Instagram at @FromDiamWithLove, and on Twitter @FromDiamWithLov. Check out her site to learn more:

What are your favorite tips for visiting Paris, France on a budget? Let us know in the comments below!