A ten-day trip covering Paris and Provence with some teen comments
We flew Swiss which has one of the most stringent carry-on policies (16 lbs vs. 20 lbs). We decided to pack light and only go carryon. Thinking of the Swiss reputation for precision, I figured if they said 16 lbs we better stick to 16 lbs. For two weeks before the trip I was Lady Justice with my luggage scale continually weighing everyone’s bags. For those who don’t travel with just carry-on, the challenge is choosing wisely so you can mix and match for a variety of weather and activities.
Tip: Carryon is a great way to avoid lugging heavy bags around with you but you cannot just pack the day before. You do need to throw everything on the bed and do some planning in advance.
Ten minutes before leaving for the airport, we were at 16lbs, with backpacks (I hid my purse in my backpack during boarding) and one carryon bag of diabetes meds for my son.
As we boarded American (and not Swiss), I watched as person after person presented their boarding passes bent half over with what appeared to be a steamer trunk on their back. The agents didn’t bat an eye. But in the end, I was glad I didn’t have to lift a refrigerator and try to shove it into the overhead bin.
Teen Opinion: This was a better flight than I thought with good movie
Landed in Paris and I had been advised that with four people and jetlag Uber was the way to go. I downloaded the app before we left. Please note, I am NOT an Uber fan and I make a conscious choice to not use it in the US. But, I have to say, it made life easier in Paris the few times we grabbed one. No haggling over price. No language barriers for directions as it is all in the app. Note at one point it did appear our driver aimed directly at a pedestrian as he stepped on the accelerator and shouted TOUCHE.
Our apartment rental was in the Marais and we booked it through CobblestoneParis (Le Gourmet du Marais). A very nice 1-bedroom apartment in a convenient location. We were able to pretty much walk everywhere and there were a lot of shops nearby to pick up take-out foods such as baguettes, cheese, wine, quiche, fresh fruit and pastry for breakfast. The boys slept on the pullout sofa (which sadly never was made back into a couch our entire stay). Overall a great apartment. NOTE: it overlooks a very busy café. The windows are totally soundproof but in the summer, it will be loud with the windows open.
Teen Opinion: That was the best apartment and best shower ever. The
location was really really really good.
After lunch at a small café on a side street which amazingly came to a whopping 170 Euros, we picked up wine, cheese and bread for dinner and returned for naps because the plan was to recover and go the Louvre (Friday nights the Louvre is open). We got the four-day Museum passes, walked to the Louvre from our place and breezed right in at 7:00. I won’t say the Louvre was empty but it was as close to it as you will get. Unfortunately, teen boys lasted about 90 minutes and it was hard to argue with jet lag.>>>> (continued)