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Here are some invaluable travel resources for France. I’ve included companies I use to book trains, cars, hotels, apartments or houses, and tours. I’ve also included a link to some infographics to make it easier to navigate your way through France.
Prepaid SIM card For France
Using a SIM card in your smartphone, specifically for France can save you a lot of money. I have used Le French Mobile for years and compared it to the other popular company, Orange examining each for their ease of use, reliability, coverage, and cost. Here’s my analysis of the two companies: best SIM card for France.
In a nutshell:
- if you want a physical SIM card where other devices can tether to your smartphone, consider the Orange SIM. Here is a link to order it: Orange Holiday SIM Card
- if you want a physical SIM card but don’t care about connecting other devices, consider Le French Mobile (as it is the best price). Here is a link to their website: Le French Mobile
- if you want an e-SIM, consider the Airalo e-Sim or Orange e-Sim.
I book train travel using Trainline. I find the prices to be good and there doesn’t seem to be a markup like with other websites (ie. Rail Europe). The notifications and information about my booking, departure, and arrival times are prompt and clear and I just really like using the website.
Car Leasing, Rentals and Driving In France
One of the reasons I really like AutoEurope is not just because they offer the best prices. They really came through for me in dealing with a shocking extra charge for roadside assistance a few years ago. The car was a lemon, roadside assistance was not included (even though it appeared it was) and I was charged an EXTRA 346 Euros on top of the cost of the car rental. You can read my horror story here.
In addition to renting cars, they also have a leasing program (I used Renault which is a brand they no longer carry for leasing) and highly recommend leasing a car if you’ll be in France over 21 days. There are more benefits than just a good price as you’ll discover in my post.
Where To Stay In France-Jan’s Picks
I’ve stayed at a lot of places in France during my 30+ trips. This link will take you to a list of those accommodations that I would recommend. Obviously, some of my stays did not make the cut! (ie. the apartment was too small even for 1 person!). The list also indicates the trip I took in case you’d like to know more about the itinerary. Two companies that I use often are Booking , Expedia, and VRBO/Home Away.
I’ve taken a number of great Viator tours in France—-many of them walking tours such as the one in Paris where I learned what it was like to live in Paris during WWII. I use Viator a lot and they really came through for my Bastille Day dinner cruise on the Bateaux Parisiens in 2019.
Concerts In Paris
Classictic is a well-respected booking portal that major sites in Paris use for concerts. It is the main site to go to if you want to get tickets to the very popular classical music and Christmas concerts at Sainte-Chapelle and Eglise Saint-Germain-des-Prés or ballet performances at Palais Garnier. Here are links to order tickets to:
- Sainte-Chapelle Concerts
- Eglise Saint-Germain-des-Prés Concerts
- Palais Garnier Performances
- Other Concerts In Paris
Websites And Apps For Travelling In France
Everyone seems to travel with a smartphone or tablet and having the right apps or websites at your fingertips can make your travel planning easier. The following are the ones I find indispensable. These are for iOS devices but most likely they are available on androids as well. Here is a link to my post: 25 Best Websites And Apps For Travelling In France.
Infographic Travel Guides
I have created some infographics about 10 beautiful places in France, 10 Dos and Don’ts, how to order your steak in French (and in France), and three classic sauces that are often served with steak.
Booking.com and Expedia: are the companies I use for finding accommodations.
VRBO: is super for booking apartments and houses.
AutoEurope: is the only car rental supplier that I will use–with the best prices, and they will refund the difference if the price goes down.
Trainline: offers an easy way to book train tickets.
Get Your Guide and Viator: Both offer tours, city cards, tickets, airport pickups, and so many other things you’ll need at your destination.
Orange SIM Card-this is the company I use when I want a physical SIM card
Orange e-SIM and Airalo e-SIM-both companies offer e-SIMS and get great reviews