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mtag17's Paris TR I recently came back from Paris after an eight-day vacation there. Here is is my detailed trip report:

Day 1 - Monday, November 20

My wife and I had taken an overnight Delta flight leaving NYC Sunday at around 7 pm, and arriving in Paris around 7 am the next morning. We arrived in Paris CDG (the charge 0,70 to use the airport bathroom!) and headed to take the train to our hotel. Because of prior research, I knew not to be the Paris Visite Pass (designed for tourists) if you can help it, and instead buy the Navigo (weekly) Pass designed for commuters.

The Navigo allows for unlimited travel on the buses, subways (RATP) and trains (SNCF) through all 7 zones in Paris for about 25. This means that you can travel as many times as you wish to and from both airports, Disneyland (haven't gone, but probably not worth going when you can just go to Orlando), and Versailles, as well as all around Paris. The only caveats are that the Navigo pass only works Sunday through Sunday, so if you are coming in on a Wednesday and leaving on a Tuesday, it may not be worthwhile getting. Also, you need to either bring a small photo of your face to put on the Navigo Pass or buy them from a kiosk for 5 each (I brought two pics along with me). Last thing, I don't believe that the Navigo pass works on the Roissey airport bus; you would need to take the train which worked out fine for us.

Either way, we took the train to our hotel, the AC Hotel by Marriott Paris Porte Maillot that I used my 7-night category 1-5 Marriott voucher. It was a category 6 hotel in the 17th arrondismont, and so we easily upgraded the voucher with 10,000 SPG points (30,000 Marriott). The hotel was actually pretty nice and friendly, and our room came with a refrigerator. More on Shabbos practicalities soon.

One last thing to note for Monday (and every other day too), Parisians eat differently than we do in the US. From what I understand, Parisians do not really eat what we consider breakfast, and therefore you will be hardpressed to find any place that will serve a bagel and eggs; at least not that I have seen. And likewise, you will have a very hard time finding a single restaurant that will open before 7:30 pm for dinner.

Day 2 - Tuesday, November 21

I have been wanting to go to visit the World War II sights in Normandy, France, and this seems like the best opportunity as I could get. I purchased 2 round-trip rail tickets from Paris to Bayeux on the SNCF website (not the Rail Europe website which is designed for tourists and overpriced) for 32 each. It was a 2.25 hour trip, and comfortable in 2nd class. 1st class did not look any better (except for maybe the non-kosher food served there), so I wouldn't pay any extra for that. The seats in 2nd class are much better than in an airplane, and it was adequate.

From Bayeux, we took an afternoon group tour (the I booked beforehand) from Normandy Sightseeing Tours for 70 each. There were 6 other people in our group, and the tour was amazing. We saw the sights of Pointe du Hoc, Omaha Beach, the American Cemetery, as well as hanging around the beautiful and historic Bayeux, and sitting in the Hotel de la Gare bar to kill 2 hours until our train arrived.

When we arrived back in Paris that night, we ate dinner at Il Conte. It was good, and I will hopefully edit this post and post pictures soon.

Day 3 - Wednesday, November 22

We took the metro over to Korcarz and had macarons and pastries (which are really expensive at all places in Paris).

After that, we made our way over to the Louvre Museum where we spent a few hours exploring. A couple of things I want to mention about the Louvre. First of all, do not waste your money on the audio guide. It was really not good, and it quickly became annoying to hold around, especially with the wires tangling everywhere. Next piece of advice... you have to go see the Mona Lisa because it's so famous, but other than the fact that it's so famous and protected by sheets of bulletproof glass and buy a barrier that keeps you 10 feet away, you would never notice it among the other massive and beautiful works of art in the Louvre. And final thing on the Louvre, bring water with you because it is very expensive there.

For dinner, we ate at Pitzman's. The pizza could've been good, but they put fish stuff on top that ruined it. If you go, make sure to ask for "pizza sans poisson" (without fish).

Day 4 - Thursday, November 23

We took the SNCF train to the Versailles and made our way to the Palace of Versailles. It's a magnificent palace, and I highly recommend going. We spent a couple of hours exploring the palace and its gardens. We went on a day when the fountains were not running (cheaper that way), and I don't feel like I missed out on anything.

For dinner, we went to eat at Darjeeling. The food was really good, but my wife made the mistake of telling the waiter she liked spicy food. Let's just say she regretted that move.

Day 5 - Friday, November 24

We made our way to two bakeries, Charles Tratieur and La Delicieuse. The food was good, but like everything else in Paris, it was small and expensive as well.

Next, we walked to the "lock bridge", Pont des Arts. Most of the locks have been removed, but there is still a small section on a neighboring bridge to get your picture taken.

Lastly, we visited the Arc de Triomphe before going back to the hotel for Shabbos. We didn't go up but rather stayed across the street where we were able to take much better pictures.

Day 6 - Shabbos, November 25

For the day meal, we walked to the Chabad of Champs Elysees. Getting out of the hotel wasn't too bad. There is easy access to the stairs without any electric components like a key card. The front door was a bit trickier as it is an automatic revolving door. However there is a door right next to it that is intended for the staff, but you can ask someone to open it for you. Keep in mind that Paris does not have an eruv.

Day 7 - Sunday, November 26

On our last full day in Paris, we went to go visit the Eiffel Tower. We didn't see a purpose in paying to go up as we already did what is basically the same thing in Las Vegas a few months prior. It was nice to get pictures there, but there are a lot of people there semi-aggressively trying to peddle the same stuff.

After the Eiffel Tower, we took the subway to "the Pletzel," the old Jewish quarter. It was actually quite a happening place there, and we really enjoyed it. You see some interesting things. Oh, and the food is amazing. We picked up a falafel from L'as du Falafel, and it was the best I have ever tasted. The line was long.

For dinner, we ate at Le Shine. The food was really good, but the portions were small.

Day 8 - Monday, November 27

The last day was basically just getting to the airport and going home. One thing to keep say about it though, everything at CDG airport is about waiting in lines. It's really annoying.

Also a nice story... we had booked a flight that stopped over in London for 2 hours. However the flight had been overbooked, and we were therefore given a direct flight to NYC instead, plus a 22 airport voucher and 150 in cash for our "trouble." Win.

December 22, 2017, 03:12:58 PM
Re: Link to popcorn threads.
Give a person a fish, feed them one meal. Teach them how to fish, feed them for life.  ;D

December 24, 2017, 03:01:46 PM
Re: Ideas for Day Trips from NYC This Sunday we went to Blue Mountain Resort for snow tubing. $30 pp for 3 hours (minimum). Was fun while we were there but the driving was just too much. Took about 2.5 hours from BP. We were 5 adults, 3 kids ages 4-7. Everyone had a blast. Would do it again but would take just 1 car and share driving. Would also leave much earlier (like 8am) next time. We chose this over mountain creek cuz MC had no available reservations.

December 26, 2017, 10:30:38 AM
Re: Buying A Car In Canada To Export To The US
Same procedure for a year or 2 used car? Please PM me  for details. TIA
Used car - if you're buying privately is much simpler because there is no HST. You can just search on Kijiji and buy and export.
Just get the seller to sign their registration that it's sold, drive it to the states (exporting it at the border - you'll need a letter from the manufacturer that it meets USA standards) and transfer ownership/register it at your local DMV

December 26, 2017, 12:25:26 PM
Norwegian Europe Sale In a sale launching today, Norwegian dropped airfare prices to Europe from New York-area airports to some of the lowest prices we've seen this year, starting from $99 one way.

Fares to Europe on the world's top low-cost, long-haul carrier (Skytrax) include the following (one way):

From JFK to:
  • London for $140
  • Paris for $149
  • Stockholm for $160
  • Oslo for $160
  • Copenhagen for $170
  • Amsterdam for $200

From Newark to:
  • Rome for $140
  • Paris for $149
  • Barcelona for $150

From Newburgh to:
  • Bergen for $99
  • Shannon for $99
  • Belfast for $99
  • Dublin for $99
  • Edinburgh for $99

When: select January-May dates, depending on the route

Return fares vary depending on the route and dates you fly. During our testing of this sale, the Norwegian fares were as much as $200 cheaper than other nonstop flights on these routes.

Book by Jan. 4.

December 26, 2017, 05:18:04 PM
Re: Dead Sea, Israel, Master Thread
aren't most indoor pools heated?

whats the big deal that it is salt water sounds like a minus not a plus?

You float in it.  It is a wild experience especially when it is cold or dark outside....

December 26, 2017, 07:36:05 PM
Re: Dead Sea, Israel, Master Thread
You float in it.  It is a wild experience especially when it is cold or dark outside....
yup, and its cleaner and easier to access, go from your room in your robe, dip in, float around, wash off and go back to your room. u can get normal pools anywhere, this is a special thing people come from all over the world for...

December 26, 2017, 08:08:21 PM
Re: Dead Sea, Israel, Master Thread
Is the CP the only hotel in Ein Bokek, dead sea are bookable by points? Is this hotel ever available by points, I can't find any dates ?
If you have UR points you can find something else.

December 26, 2017, 09:16:47 PM
Re: Dead Sea, Israel, Master Thread
Is the CP the only hotel in Ein Bokek, dead sea are bookable by points? Is this hotel ever available by points, I can't find any dates ?

 strange I booked 2 rooms with IHG points for maid Jan approx 3 days ago

December 27, 2017, 08:55:43 AM
Re: Amex Offers Discussion Thread
Yes boss 🤦‍♂️.

Also, how long after someone posts one is it okay to post it again?
It's a recurring issue on this thread. I posted a year ago how I had some Sam's offers show up on business cards that didn't have them before. Turns out the second round targeted a much larger number of cards. I didn't see any cards targeted with Dunkin but I appreciate the nudge to do a quick check.

Imho if you're a regular poster who's with the program then obviously you know how to use the search function. I hate the bossypantsness of some people here...

December 28, 2017, 01:53:21 AM