About Paris

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France. By the 17th century, Paris was one of Europe’s major centres of finance, commerce, fashion, science and arts, and it has retained that position.

The city is also a major rail, highway, and air-transport hub served by two international airports: Paris-Charles de Gaulle (the second busiest airport in Europe after London Heathrow Airport) and Paris-Orly.

Paris has many important cultural institutions. The central area of the city along the Seine River is classified as a UNESCO Heritage Site and includes many notable monuments, including the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Sainte-Chapelle, the former Universal Exposition Grand PalaisPetit Palais and Eiffel Tower, and the Basilica of Sacré-Cœur in Montmartre.

Electricity

Paris’s electrical current is 50Hz, 220 volts is used throughout France with 2 pin wall sockets. An adapter may be needed.

Emergency

Dial 112 in case of emergencies. However other numbers exist to give a faster response. Dial 17 for police emergencies. Dial 15 for medical emergencies. If you need a doctor  on call, dial the 116 117. If you are from the European Union, you must have your blue EHIC card for free medical help. Pharmacy (Pharmacie) are open weekdays 08.00- 20.00 and some open 24h/7h. As with many large cities, pick-pocketers can be found in major tourist areas. Exercise typical caution with your valuables and person.

Gratuities

A 15% service charges is already included in the final bill of the restaurants. If you wish to leave more to recognize exceptional service, a few Euro or 5%-10% could be also left for the waiters. It is common to leave 10 or 15 cents when having coffee or snacks. It is common to round up to the closest Euro or tip your Taxi Driver 1-2 Euro if you thought they were friendly.

Language

The official language of the country is French. But in the parts of the city that see the most tourists, people will understand and talk to you in English.

Banks

Standard banking hours vary from branch to branch depending upon the location, the bank, and the size of the branch. Typical banking opening hours in cities and towns are Monday to Friday, 08:30-9:00 until 16:00-17:30, some banks are also starting to offer extended opening hours one day per week. On Saturday, they are usually open from 09:00 until noon. Traveler’s cheques are not widely accepted anymore, so it is best to bring cash and an ATM or debit card. These cash machines are readily available all around the city.

Credit Cards

Major credit cards such as MasterCard and Visa are accepted almost everywhere. American Express are not always accepted.

No Smoking Regulations

The Non-Smoking Protection Act forbids smoking in all public buildings, including bars and restaurants, as well as public transportation. Smoking is not allowed in the hotel.

Shopping Hours

Most businesses, including shopping centres, are open from 09.00 until 19:00 on weekdays. Smaller shops close on Sundays and sometimes Mondays! But major shops and supermarkets are open 7 days a week, particularly in tourists areas.

Taxes

The standard tax (TVA or VAT) is 20% in Paris.

Time Zone

Paris is in the Central European time zone UTC +01.00.

Weather

Paris weather in November is quite cold, so make sure to pack warm clothes and don’t forget your hat and scarf. There’s slightly less sunshine than previous months, but there’s still plenty of daylight to explore the city and enjoy your time away. The average temperature is around 9°C (45 °F) with lows of just 3°C (37 °F) towards the end of the month. There is 22mm of rainfall over 15 days, which means the chance of rain during your stay is very likely. Humidity levels are around 85% with lows of 70%.

Need more information ?
Get in touch