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Paris, the cosmopolitan capital of France, is located in the north of the country, on the river Seine. Dubbed the City of Light (la Ville Lumière), Paris is known as one of the most beautiful and romantic cities in the world and has a vast influence in the realms of culture, art, food and design. Paris is also an international fashion center, and is home to the world's finest and most luxurious fashion designers and cosmetics, like Yves Saint-Laurent, Christian Dior, Chanel No.5, Guerlain, Lancôme, L'Oréal, and more. The city has the second highest number of Michelin-restaurants in the world (after Tokyo), and features numerous iconic landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe, the Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Louvre Museum, Moulin Rouge, etc. Paris is one of the most popular tourist destination in the world, with 45 million tourists annually.

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Paris is usually ranked as one of the most expensive cities in the world, but the price range is actually very extensive, and you can get by with a tighter budget with no problem at all. You can save a lot of money by making the most of special offers, yearly sales, free admission days to museums and more. The biggest expense, like most destinations, is accommodation, but one should have no trouble finding cheap hotels and logging.

Currency: The Euro (€) is the French and European currency. €1 is divided into 100 centimes or cents. Notes are €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200 and €500. coins are 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents; €1 and €2.

Everyday prices: The metro is less expensive than most cities in the world, and a book of 10 tickets will cost you approximately €10. The museums admission is €7 to €9, and a sandwich will usually cost you around €5. Small coffee is €1 at the bar and €2 sitting down, and a full meal - starter, main dish and dessert, not including drinks –will cost between €15 and €20 depending on the area (Restaurant prices are always displayed outside). A baguette of bread is €0.80, a beer in a café is €2 to €4 and a seat at the cinema is around €9.

Tipping: all prices shown include tax and service (the latter is around 15% of the total price). If the service has been particularly good, you may wish to leave a tip to show your appreciation. As a general rule, the amount is 5%-10% of the total bill.

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