Money Saving Tip

Who doesn’t like to save money?
If you spend at least 175 Euros in the same store on the same day, you can get the VAT (Value Added Tax) back. When you are paying, be sure to tell the cashier that you would like to claim the tax so you will need the necessary form. Some stores, like Galeries Lafayette require you to go to a different floor where they have a booth that deals just with refunds.

Thanks to technology, the store will give you a customs receipt with a bar code as well as an envelope.  It is now much easier to submit the form and get money back.

Now, all you have to do is go to the Tax Refund booth at the airport. (In this case, it is more reliable to go to the one BEFORE you enter customs) and have a machine scan the bar code. The machine will tell you if all is OK and if it is, you just have to put the receipt in the envelope and deposit it in the quasi-mailbox located beside the Tax Refund booth. This mailbox is only for tax refunds. Now you just have to wait up to three months for the refund on your credit card (or depending how you paid, it might also be a cheque).

Last Day In Paris

Paris France

It was 24 degrees and sunny today in Paris. Everyone was out. And so was I…walking and sitting at a cafe for lunch and in the Tuileries gardens…..just because.

After I dropped off my luggage at Gare Austerlitz (5.5 Euros for 24 hours!!!), I took the metro to the Iena Metro to visit the Palais Galliera where there is an exhibit of the fashions from the  50’s. Before going in, however, I HAD to venture up and down the marche on Avenue Wilson. It was a packed marche with beautiful produce and flowers. I couldn’t resist another Chaussons aux Pommes! How can you not love those roses!

Continue reading →

Celebrating The End Of The Week—With Eclairs (plural)

Dalloyau Paris, France

So I finished five mornings (9-1pm) at Alliance Francaise. Overall I think the teaching methods are excellent as there are a variety of ways to learn the material; however, a lot depends on how the teacher engages the students particularly when there is ONE student who monopolizes the discussion. A girl from Turkey was sitting beside me today and she agreed that unfortunately, the Italian classmate talked all the time so it was difficult to get a word in. That being said, I still think it was a great experience worth trying. The hardest part for me is continuing to practice my French in Toronto where no one else does. Maybe that’s why I keep returning to France? Would I do Alliance Francaise again? Yes. Continue reading →

Searching For My Eclair

Croissant from Bread and Roses, Paris France

I am realizing that this trip to France has caused me to be on a mission on two fronts: first to take pictures of all the places and things readers might be intrigued to see; and two, to try many of the sweets and breads outlined in David Lebovitz’s new app, called, “Paris Pastry”. This app is a MUST for travelers to Paris as it outlines the best places to buy chocolates, ice cream, breads and pastries in the city. I love Lebovit’s blog and book, “The Sweet Life In Paris” and he recently came out with a new book “Paris Kitchen”. I won’t say I am trying to hunt down every single place he has mentioned; however, many of the names are now on “my radar”. Continue reading →

A Shopping Day In Paris

Shopping Day In Paris

Weather in Paris was perfect today—-about 21 degrees and sunny. It was like a summer day with lots of people sitting at cafes. After class, I walked another 4.5 hours and went shopping until I dropped. I won’t mention what I bought but suffice to say I visited and bought items from Hermes, the kitchen store, Dehillerin, and the home décor store, Maisons du Monde. Continue reading →