French Friday – Carte du jour

The exchange rate between the dollar and the Euro means that everything you buy while in Europe is more expensive than “back at home.”

Some posts on this site contain affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, I may earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you!). Opinions are always my own and I’ll never promote something I don’t use or believe in.

When traveling anywhere in the world eating in restaurants for all your meals can cost you quite a bit from your vacation budget.

Some of the things that my husband and I do to combat this is enjoying some nice restaurant meals without having to put a second mortgage on our house!

For example, we never eat breakfast in the hotel, unless of course it is included in the price of the room. Most hotel breakfasts are outrageously priced and the quality is usually not that good. Instead, we will go to a local bar or cafe and have their “petit dejeuner” which consists of coffee, orange juice and either a croissant or a half of a baguette with butter and jams. Some places actually give both a croissant and a baguette. The price is usually around 10 Euros (I’ve seen it at 7).

For lunch, we will grab a sandwich at a bakery, or you could grab a crepe or kebab from the street. They are all filling and excellent! You can also eat at many high-end restaurants for lunch and pay much less than you would for dinner and still get a fantastic meal. If you do that, then you can switch my suggestion and have a sandwich for dinner, believe me, a meal at one of the fine establishments will fill you up and you may even skip dinner all together!

menu-du-jourFor dinner (or even for lunch) you can’t go wrong with the “carte du jour” it is the special of the day and usually costs less. Or there is the “menu du jour” which will allow you to select a starter, main course and dessert from a set list. It is a lot cheaper than if you ordered three individual courses.

In Paris, my husband and I like to eat at brasseries, as well. They are less expensive than most restaurants and are open non-stop as opposed some restaurants which have dinner hours that may start at 8, etc.

If you follow these guidelines you might have enough money left over to buy some of those Eiffel Tower souvenirs that are sold everywhere!


  1. Linda
    August 27, 2010

    There are many great Thai and chinese food places in Paris-I always find them cheaper. And also, on Rue du Rosiers, lots of Falafal shops. Filling and inexpensive.

  2. Andi
    August 28, 2010

    Ummm, dining in Paris…though I could probably just be fine with nutella crepes for all 3 of my meals. 😉

  3. Clarice
    August 28, 2010

    While I was Paris I loved just stopping at the street shops and picking up bread, veggies, cheese and meat. With so many great places to sit, it was a great, money-saving option.

  4. Carolyn Jung
    August 28, 2010

    Great advice. The same is true for big cities like New York, too. Eat at a chic, white-tablecloth place at lunch time and you get the same wonderful food for a fraction of the cost.

  5. Kirsten
    August 28, 2010

    I didn’t eat at too many restaurants when I was in Paris. I lived off of street food – Nutella crepes, mostly.

    I found your blog via Lady Bloggers, and I’m enjoying it so far!

    1. Andi
      August 29, 2010

      @Kirsten, hi and welcome! I like street food as well, but I need it mixed in with restaurant food as well otherwise I’d miss some of my favorite dishes!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to top