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