A Day in the Life of a Parisian

Every day in Paris is a good day. Rain or shine, it’s a beautiful life. Everyone knows that Paris is a lovely place to be, but what is a day in the life of a Parisian really like? You know about the Eiffel Tower, and you’ve probably heard about the excellent cuisine and beautiful streets. 

But maybe you don’t know some of the details of day to day life in the city. We’re going to talk about everything from transportation to fashion to give you an idea of how daily life goes in the city of love and light.

Accommodation

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No matter where you are in Paris, the surroundings are beautiful. From the elegant architecture of the never-ending stream of apartments to the aesthetic charm of the streets, you will be in awe of every neighborhood.

This holds true indoors. Your apartment and the ones you visit when going over to friends places will all be cute and unique in their own way. Apartments in Paris are typically charming and full of light from open windows that show off amazing views of neighboring rooms and shops.

You will probably pay a bit less or more than 1,000 euros for your place, unless you share with multiple people. Accommodation is not cheap in Paris, because who doesn’t want to live there?

Food

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If you don’t cook your own food, munchies will definitely take a toll on your budget. Restaurants are expensive in Paris, and what’s worse is that the food is quite desirable, so there’s no resisting. 

That being said, if you can commit to making the majority of your meals yourself, then you will find a good balance between fine dining and grocery shopping. And you will probably enjoy shopping for groceries. Put in earphones and listen to music as you shop in little grocery stores.

On the contrary, if you want to eat out, there’s something for everyone. Paris is the place to eat; they have everything from authentic Italian kitchens to immersive Moroccan experiences.

While going out to eat costs a lot more, grocery shopping can also be a bit pricey. Depending on what you buy, a trip to the store for yourself could get up to 50 euros. On the bright side, this food will last you, whereas the average dinner for one at a restaurant is probably around 30 euros including drinks. 

A good piece of advice for restaurant searching is to look up the places that are known to be good. Sometimes, stopping at the nearest corner to eat can lead you to the more touristy spots where the food is not renowned. 

People

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We should definitely talk about what the people in the city are like. You might be worried about interactions with the locals, since many people say that the French in general are rude. The thing is that this isn’t necessarily true. 

The Parisians that you run into should actually be pretty kind on a day to day basis. At least the ones in the service industry are friendly and nice to their customers. 

It is possible to run into some hostility, as the French like being French and sometimes have opinions about foreigners. In order to avoid a situation like this, just practice your basics, like “bonjour”, “merci”, “bonne journée”, and “au revoir”. The locals will appreciate it if you learn these staple words, even if you speak English to them.

Language

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Another good phrase to master is “ça va?”. This is basically the way of saying “how are you?”, and it is usually responded with “ça va, et toi?”, which translates to “I’m good, and you?”. This exchange is not so much something you would say in a formal setting, but more something to say when you meet new friends or greet ones you already know.

Some French people don’t speak English, but a lot of the ones who have service jobs do. And if you ever run into someone who doesn’t, there will always be someone nearby who can translate. The best policy is just to try to learn the language while you’re there.

The French language is not the easiest to pick up. The pronunciation is very sophisticated, so it may take you a while to get used to. But being surrounded by it on a daily basis will be a huge advantage, and you will soon get the hang of it. 

Practicing the language in the grocery store and wherever else you go on a daily basis is a fun and easy way to master the basics. Be confident and you will slowly start to sound like a native.

Social Life

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Friends may be the best part of the day in Paris. But where can you find some? Social gatherings can be found in different places around the city. A classic way to meet new people is to attend house parties, where your school or work mates will be hanging out. 

You can also bring wine, cheese, and bread to the Seine river and mingle with the many people that are sitting along the bank chatting. 

If you’re into nightlife, there are tons of clubs to visit and try to meet new people. You can either go to one of the many spots with more commercial music like L’arc or Hobo. If you prefer techno, you will not be disappointed. 

Paris has one of the best underground music scenes. Visit one of the venues on a boat in the Seine like Concrete and enjoy amazing house music. There will be plenty of lively people there to make friends.

Occupation

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During a typical day in Paris, you will definitely see many young people around the city, as Paris is known to be one of the best places for students. This makes sense, because how could you not want to take your work to the Eiffel Tower to study? 

If you are studying in Paris, take advantage of everything the city has to offer students, from co-working spaces to libraries.

As a Parisian, you either study at the library in the Centre Pompidou, or in the classic Sainte-Geneviève Library. These are both large spaces that encourage focus with everyone around you hard at work.

During final exam weeks, these locations are packed, and they will probably have a line, but it’s worth the wait.

As far as jobs are concerned, a lot of people work as servers or retail clerks to run the infinite shops and restaurants that fill the streets. But being a server isn’t so bad in a place where you’re likely to eat bread and cheese on the house. 

Fashion

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One of the unspoken rules of Paris is that no one leaves the house looking less than their best. Yes, they do go to the grocery store dressed to the nines. This is definitely not the place to walk around in workout clothes. 

If you don’t have a wardrobe full of fashionable pieces, don’t worry. Paris is a great place for shopping, and shopping is always a fun way to spend the day. There’s everything from thrifting to high-end stores, so there’s something for everyone. 

There are cool thrift stores all around, but there’s a particularly cute one in Montmartre called Chinemachine. For designer brands, try shopping in the neighborhood, Les Archives, near the Picasso Museum, which features high-end stores like Sandro and Supreme.

A good rule of thumb for choosing clothes that are fit for the Parisian streets is that you can never go wrong with black. Dress in black for the day and you will fit right in with the rest of the pedestrians, as black outfits are easy to coordinate, slimming, and sexy.

Transportation

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Speaking of walkers, getting around on foot is a great way to see the city. You can usually get to your destination by walking if it only takes 15 to 30 minutes to get where you’re going. 

Since Paris is so pretty, being a pedestrian is an enjoyable part of the day. For journeys longer than half an hour, the tube is a good way to go.

For some, using the Paris metro is a nice part of the day. The underground world in the city consists of traveling through white tunnels surrounded by colorful advertisements and listening to captivating instruments.  

Locals ride white, light green and purple trains, listen to music, and enjoy colorful ads throughout the white tunnels. This means that taking the metro is probably the best way to get around the city, as it shortens walking time and provides interesting scenery along the way. Also, driving is sometimes not efficient with traffic and the way the streets are mapped out.

Naturally, it’s best to buy a monthly metro pass, called a Navigo, for unlimited access without having to buy a ticket every trip. But if you do buy tickets individually, they are 1.90 euros. This price adds up quickly for round trip adventures every day, so if you’ll be traveling daily, you should probably purchase a pass.

Weather

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What kind of climate do these Parisian days have? Knowing the weather is important for knowing the vibe. Winters in Paris can get very cold, so the locals wear all of the appropriate warm weather gear. It’s an opportunity to wear those fun winter accessories.

During the rest of the year, the weather is pretty nice. In August, it does get pretty hot, so Parisians should have a fan going in their apartment. Overall, a day in Paris should have good weather. It’s not the type of place that gets insane amounts of snow or intense droughts.

Museums

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Visiting museums is a great way to spend a day in the city. Take the chance to visit the Picasso museum in Les Archives or metro to the Louis Vuitton foundation which is a little outside the center of the city.

Another recommendable museum is the European House of Photography, located in the fourth arrondissement. This unique exposition features cool photography and real depictions of life.

Arts

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One of the greatest things about experiencing daily life in Paris is the art world that comes with it. From street art to galleries, Paris is a hub for artists and an inspiration for everyone. 

If you are looking for a place to see a collection of work from various Parisian artists, visit 59 Rivoli (pictured above). Here, you will find a smorgasbord of art in 30 collections, divided among the six floors of the building.

Paris is also the perfect place for photography. Every view is captivating, so the city serves a beautiful backdrop for everyone there, and makes for good polaroids.

Picnicking

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Parisians live on bread, cheese, and wine. They pack it up and take it to the Eiffel Tower, the Seine, or any other green spots around the city.

Picnicking is a great way to enjoy the day and meet up with friends. No matter which location you choose, it’s the best way to watch the sunset.

Eiffel Tower

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Naturally, this landmark deserves an entire section. Visiting the Eiffel is a magical thing that should be done on a regular basis when living in Paris. 

Parisians gather their friends and a tasty picnic to enjoy the view, winter and summer. For a romantic date, bring strawberries and champagne. 

The Eiffel is a great thing to see, from the ground and from the top. Looking at the city from so high up is one of the best views. You have the chance to see how the apartments and streets look from a bird’s eye view.

Now you know what to wear, what to say, how to get around, and other customs of the French in Paris. With these insider tips, you will easily navigate the Parisian streets, and you’ll have a great day every day. 

Paris is a beautiful place to live. It offers food, music, art, fashion, and fun. What more could you ask for? One of the most amazing parts of daily life in Paris to take advantage of is the language. It is such an elegant way to communicate, and getting to learn it on a daily basis is a wonderful opportunity.

After reading this article, you now know the details of the different parts of a Parisian day, and the different spots where people actually spend their time. If you’re living in the city, you’re definitely going to have a good time. Enjoy the food, the people, and the city. And until next time, au revoir!

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