I told hubby that our budget for our tickets to fly there must be less than $500 round trip a person. He looked at me as if I was joking... I wasn't. I told him that all things are possible and I know there's an awesome deal out there and we don't have to break the bank for it. He searched earnestly and found it! His search was found with another colleagues's help. We booked our tickets immediately. I've learned in the past that the best time to shop for flight tickets are mid week Tuesday, Wednesday, or a Thursday.
From there, we looked at museum passes. We had purchased the Paris pass online which allows you to see over 60+ museums. They had different passes from two, three, and five days. It also offered a hop and off bus for the visitor to ride. On our visit to Paris, we came to find out that children 19 years and younger are free. So, we canceled our Paris Pass and visited museums that we were able to squeeze in and enjoy.
Also, note that you have to register and purchase a ticket for the Eiffel Tower, especially if you want to visit the very top, very much in advance. We nearly missed The opportunity to meet the top of the Eiffel tower just a month before our trip. Thank goodness that Hubby was able to reserve it on time.
As for our hotel, we stayed at the Mercure hotel in Versaille. It was right across a stadium and the metro, the bus, and the train were only a few feet away. There were markets, a bakery, restaurants, shopping stores nearby for us to take a stroll around the neighborhood. The ambience of everything at our hotel was perfect. Right below our hotel next door was a restaurant called Cafe Dumonte. The restaurant was always busy and the food served was delish!
Overall, the entire trip, was all worth every penny vested in. Although it was easy to spend wherever and whenever we wanted, we had a budget for everything.
Our flight was less than $500 per person, our hotel stay for 8 days was $136/ night, the museum visits varied between $7-$20/ person (kids <19 years old are FREE!), we savored dinner over breakfast and lunch, and we kept our eyes open for the best deals for gifts to our family and friends. Our budget was $5000 overall, which we saved throughout the year before our big day. We used our credit cards to earn points for our purchases - which by the way was Free from international foreign fees, so make sure your credit card has those benefits. Also, when exchanging your money, try not to go to the kiosks at the airport or to a street vendor. They do make money for exchanging your money for you. We learned that the best and safest way to get more for your dollar is using the ATM machine. Some banks have no international fees for withdrawals and some do which can be approximately $3-4 per withdrawal. Having a budget is very important so not to overspend. It's also important to have an emergency plan, so be sure to have extra funds accessible if needed for emergency cases. We made sure our teenagers knew where and what to do in case we were ever separated and reminded them to stay close and not to talk to strangers, yet be respectful and always be aware of their surroundings.
The memories created is priceless, and at the time spent was all worth it.