1. Go to the Louvre on the first Sunday of the month.
The first Sunday of every month in Paris is free museum day. This means museums like the Musee d’Orsay and the Louvre, which normally would put you out around 15 Euro, are now completely free! This saved my husband and I 30 Euro at the Louvre alone.
Insider tip: Arrive early on this day and plan out your route to make the most of the free museums.
Insider tip: Use the secret entrance, the Galerie du Carrousel, it is lesser known and will have dramatically shorter line than the glass pyramid entrance.
2. Use Airbnb instead of booking a hotel room
Use Airbnb and rent an entire flat instead of being sardined into a cheap hotel room or hostel. Renting a flat will most likely be cheaper than either a hostel or hotel and you will have your own bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen. Having your own kitchen to cook meals at is another way you will save money with this option.
Insider tip: Look for flats right in the heart of Paris, they are available and being able to walk out your door and be blocks from the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame is priceless.
Insider tip: Book in advance, the good deals book quickly and make sure you have the contact information for your booking so you can get into your flat as seamlessly as possible.
Insider tip: Be willing to sacrifice space, you’re in Paris! Let’s be honest, you’ll only be going back to your room to sleep anyways!
3. Go to the Palace of Versailles Gardens for free
The grounds at the Palace of Versailles are just a short metro ride out of the city, about 20 minutes. It is open to the public and completely free to stroll through the grounds. The gardens expand just less than 2,000 acres and every bit of it awe-inspiring. This was by far my favorite part of Paris. The Eiffel Tower was wonderful and so was the Mona Lisa, but Versailles took my breath away.
Insider tip: Pack a picnic lunch! There are some many wonderful places to sit and just take in the beauty surrounding you.
Insider tip: If you do want to spend money, spend it on Marie Antoinette’s Estate over the main palace. It is an absolute trip back in time and very quiet and romantic. The hall of mirrors in the main palace is great but so crowded and very touristy.
4. Walk everywhere!
Most of the tourist destinations in Paris are in close proximity to each other, this makes walking around Paris a great way to not only save money but also a way to get a wonderful taste of real Parisian life. The sights and smells of Paris are enchanting. Riding the metro involves not only paying for tickets that add up but also riding a train underground in the dark. I loved mapping out my route for the day and finding myself on quite side streets just taking in all Paris had to offer.
Insider tip: Plan your day ahead of time and see sites that are close together so you don’t add more miles than you need to or find yourself exhausted on the other end of town.
5. Pack a lunch
Depending on the time of year picnicking in Paris can be an easy way to save money while still getting a great experience. There are so many beautiful parks and gardens right in Paris, including the Champ de Mars, the lawn in front of the Eiffel Tower. Picnicking allows you to escape the crowds, slow down, and truly appreciate the history and natural beauty that Paris has to offer. It also gives you a great excuse to stumble into a real Parisian grocery store and try your hand at buying foods you have never had before!
Insider tip: The Jardin du Luxembourg and the Jarin des Tuileries have lawn chairs available to the public and great fountains to sit near as well.
Insider tip: I always had good luck at a grocery store called, Carrefour City, it is a chain grocery store so not hard to find and very organized