Friday, January 29, 2016

Planning For Paris....Step One- Hotel Or Apartment

Maybe you are like me and love the process of planning for a trip, or maybe you would rather pay your money to a tour company and just show up at the airport and let someone else do all the planning.

Even though I have just took the first step in planning my trip to Paris, I have been doing research for quite awhile now. I only have about 5 Paris travel books on my bookshelf and have stared at the Google map of Paris till my eyes turned red.  No, I'm not one bit obsessed!!

The first step in planning this trip was to find a place to stay.  For me the decision on whether to stay in a hotel or renting an apartment was a relatively easy one.  Economics did play a little part.  I thought it would be a bit cheaper to pick up some groceries at the nearest market and fix some simple meals instead of eating every meal out.  Most of all though, I wanted to have the whole experience of living like a local.  So consulting my cousins wife, who is my travel partner and friend, Renee was agreeable to the idea of renting an apartment.  I had changed my mind after talking to a French friend from thinking about staying in the 7th arrondissement  near the Eiffel Tower to the 6th in the St, Germain neighborhood.  We are more centrally located in this area where we can walk to many things we may want to see and do.

Like I said I had started doing research awhile ago, so I had looked at many apartments through various agencies.  In fact I had 19 apartments saved to my favorites on VRBO.  It was almost too confusing.  Each one had good points and I finally narrowed it down to about 3 apartments.  I think I went back and forth between those 3 about 20 times.  Finally  it was time to pick.  I kept going to one apartment through Paris For Rent, an agency which is recommended by Rick Steves
 Paris 2016 . When I made a price request Patrick promptly contacted me and told me this apartment was not available for the first 2 days I had requested.  After a few email exchanges I changed my date so we could book that apartment.  Renee gave the okay and I ended up making the 50% down payment.  Patrick sent me all the info the next day and step one was complete.

With our apartment booked it finally is real that this will happen and I will be back in Paris in September!!

What's next?  Searching for flights.  Looks like this will take the biggest chunk of the travel budget. The question is, to hold out for a bargain, or just get it over with and book?

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