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Is it worth the change fee to add Paris?

I'll cut right to the chase, already booked a flight to Venice and from there we will board a cruise ship that will take us to some prominent Greek Isles plus Kotor, post cruise we're flying to Amsterdam and spend a day there before making our way home to Canada. The dilemma: the wife wants to add 4 days pre cruise to spend in Paris, the catch: I pay $350 cad to change the itinerary, the fare difference is minimal or i can cancel the flight and book with another airline.
Its our first time in Europe, would it be worth to pay $350 pp for 4 people just so to add And see Paris for 3 days(4 if it includes the transit).???
First timer could use a lil enlightment..Thanks!

Posted by
1425 posts

Nobody can answer that question for you (except K).

If it were me, I would not pay the change fee unless I were adding at least 5-6 extra days. I might make an exception if I did not think I would be able to get away again for several years.

Another way to look at it is that in some future year, it's unlikely you will be able to buy a ticket for $350 to Paris. So, the change might be the most affordable way to visit for the foreseeable future.

Posted by
1075 posts

Here is another way to look at it: With airfares lower than they have been in awhile, you could take a separate trip to Paris for not too much more money. This would be true if you travelled outside of peak travel season.

Posted by
1486 posts

It's impossible to answer this question for you. You don't need anyone here to tell you how great Paris is. But only you know how important it is to your wife. Or are you hoping to get advice saying not to do it so you can convince your wife that it's not a good idea?

The airfare is just a small portion of the cost. You'll also have transfers to and from the airport, lodging, meals, sightseeing, etc.

Paris is great. So are a lot of other European destinations, but you can't do all of them. Do you want to add Paris to this particular itinerary? Would it be better to save it for your next trip to Europe? Only you can decide.

If I were you, I'd rather extend my time in Amsterdam than add an additional destination. 1 day in Amsterdam is barely enough to get a feel for it.

Posted by
223 posts

I suppose that was a bit cute.

My point is that, if one to reflect on what one typically spends month-to-month on entertainment or enlightenment, such as movies, concerts, admission fees to important sights, and so forth, 350 CAD is peanuts for the vast smorgasbord Paris would present to a visitor.

No question.

Posted by
21307 posts

You may get differing opinions on this. This is the way I'd think about it:

  • A longer trip is always better than a shorter trip, all other things being equal. But they aren't equal here because of the rebooking charge on the flights.

  • You can spend an extra $1400 and give 4 people 3 days (one of them jet-lagged) in Paris. You lose one jet-lagged day in Venice (a jet-lagged day being of questionable value, but you have to spend it somewhere). OR You can apply that $1400 toward the cost of airfare for another trip--to include Paris--in a year or two. Going the second-trip route would allow you more time in Paris (if desired) and the chance to see some additional places in France or neighboring countries.

  • I don't know where you live in Canada or what a typical airfare is from your home. People have reported some very good deals from the Toronto area. If $350 per person is a substantial percentage of an entirely new airfare (for next year), that would make me more likely to keep the current trip as-is. If you're traveling from a difficult/costly origin airport and $350 is a comparative nit, that would make the flight adjustment relatively more attractive.

  • If some of your fellow travelers (adult children?) might not be available to travel with you on the hypothetical future trip and they are also gung-ho about Paris, that would be another reason to give serious consideration to changing this year's flights.

  • Time of year might be a factor. There are times in shoulder season when the weather in the Greek Islands is quite nice but Paris would be riskier (though I guess for Canadians this would be a non-issue).

I, myself, would choose to apply the money to a future trip, because $350 extra in airfare for 3 days doesn't sound like a winner to me. I am, however, extremely stingy. That amount of money would cover 5 to 7 hotel nights for me (though not in Paris).

Posted by
8507 posts

Happy wife = happy life.
Those low fares are from US east coast and a couple of west coast gateway cities--fine if you live there.
Each separate trip over will incur a jet lag.

A few ideas to consider as you make you decision.

Posted by
32 posts

Ok a lil' background of us, we're from Toronto i would be towing along two kids(6&7) and wife on this trip.
We usually take 2 trips a year, 1 across the border and another somewhere,and to the poster who quote "'Or are you hoping to get advice saying not to do it so you can convince your wife that it's not a good idea?".. Yes kinda and above all i was trying to talk myself into it, it all started when i booked a flight for 4 yesterday to LA for next month, the price: $350 pp, she suggested Paris instead. So i cancelled (surprise,surprise..). Our trip/cruise won't be until October, its a long wait. Like other posters' style, i like to split than throwing everything in one shot. Paris is really not always in my radar but Switzerland do, i reckon that this won't be the last of Europe. Part of me wants to get Paris out of the way so i can focus on Lucerne and others in a year or two from now.

PS: I'm selectively frugal.

Posted by
1781 posts

Hi thunder, well, I don't think you should approach it like "I want to get Paris out of the way..." Paris is wonderful. If it's on your wife's wish list, I'd say go for it.

Posted by
32 posts

Hello Donna, If i went on to add Paris then i will have to devise a plan to negate the $1400 change fee:
- Lodging: CDG Novotel Airport or Ibis CDG Hotel
- DIY tours except Disneyland
- Uber
.. lunch and dinner, had no idea, you mind suggesting any reasonably priced stores?

Posted by
8507 posts

Not the ideal choice for lodging because you'll be paying 20 euro per adult per day round trip and a bit less for children under ten between CDG and Paris, money you could put toward an Ibis or Novotel in Paris instead. You're also spending almost an hour each way in transport. It's best to be as central as can be.

However, if all you want to do is get Paris out of the way and if you feel you have to pinch centimes to add these four days, this doesn't portend to be enjoyable for everyone.

Posted by
1058 posts

Paris and Venice are my two favorite cities. I would definitely do it, but not at the expense of short changing Venice. I hope you have allocated several days to see Venice prior to departing for your cruise. If not, I would suggest you spend your money to see Venice and save Paris for another trip.

Posted by
1781 posts

Hi thunder, Paris is not going to be cheap but there are ways to reduce your expenses. For example, you can save money on lunches by purchasing sandwiches and picnic supplies at the local grocery stores. You can walk or take the metro/busses rather than using Uber or taxis. You can do self-guided tours on your own with the help of a good guidebook.

Don't stay at a hotel by the airport. You'll eat up any savings with transportation to and from your hotel and the major sites.

Maybe you need a "family meeting" to discuss the alternatives...

Posted by
32 posts

We'll be in Venice 2 days prior to cruise, and will spend a significant time after the ship arrives since our flight to AMS wont be til late in the afternoon. I wont shortchange Venice for sure.

BETS, point taken. Thanks. One thing that is playing in my mind right now is to cancel the cruise(No fee) and re arrange my itinerary with Venice as my command post( since im flying in and out of there) The $ on the cruise will go towards Paris and Swiss instead. I don't know, Greek Isles seems too beautiful to give up though.

Posted by
3709 posts

I'm not a cruise person so I'd drop that. You can still sail to the Greek islands on a ferry pretty cheaply from Athens. You need more time but less money making your own arrangements.

Posted by
12992 posts

It's $350 per person to see Paris for three full days? I vote yes, make the change.

Posted by
2466 posts

Forget Uber and use regular Parisien taxis, instead.
Uber frequently has "surge prices", cannot pick up people on the street, can't pick up passengers at the airports or train stations.
Parisien taxis have flat fees to and from both airports, depending on location, you'll pay 50 or 55 EU for 4 passengers with luggage. Follow the overhead signs to the TAXI stand and hand the driver the complete address of your hotel, including the Postal Code. Remember that legitimate taxi drivers always remain in their vehicles.
You can easily hail Parisien taxis on the street - just walk to a major intersection, green light on top means it's available, red light means it is not. Easier than fiddling around with an Uber app.
If you need to reserve for a certain time, this is a reliable company that most residents use. You can request booster seats for your children. There will be a 7 EU reservation fee added to the metered fare or flat fee to the airport:

You will have to mention that you will have 4 people in the hotel room, even if they are children.

Posted by
5697 posts

And you're not actually seeing Paris for 3 days if your plans include a day at Disneyland Paris -- if Disneyland is a big draw, go back to the LA tickets and do a 2-day (or more) stay at the original park for a family vacation. Could you manage a just-for-two trip to Paris later ?

Posted by
32 posts

Thanks for all the insights.
I recently did a mock booking of my current itinerary with Paris as an add-on and the total cost came down approximately the same.Technically, thats $1400 out the window (whether i rebook or cancel w/c by the way is cheaper on other airlines)and i can't seem to reconcile with that. Its still a long way to go, i may get over it and make a u-turn in the months leading to but for now i will just have to save Paris for the next trip, and i have to do it sooner.