In this lesson, you are going to read a real-life story about travelling in France.
I went to France with my husband and son in the summer of 2015, and actually that was the first European country I visited. Of course, I had to consider currency exchange, places to visit and hotels to stay in.
We travelled from Shanghai to Paris, where we spent five days. When I travel with my family, I'm the person who chooses the tourist destinations and who makes reservations. I decided to look for some Airbnb options in Paris, because hotels there are quite expensive. I found an apartment with three rooms at a very affordable price*. It was two times lower than hotel prices. Apart from the price, another reason why we prefer Airbnb is because rooms are bigger compared to hotel rooms.
In Paris, we visited the most popular tourist attractions. I remember we got caught in the rain while we were near the Eiffel Tower, and we didn't have an umbrella, so we had to buy one. There were people selling raincoats for 10 euros each and an umbrella for 25 euros. Even though we knew they were overpriced, we bought one raincoat and one umbrella. They were of poor quality and I assume their original price was probably around $2 each.
Travelling in Paris is convenient if you choose their subway system. Driving a car can be challenging and it's usually difficult to find a parking space.
As for the food, we wanted to try the local cuisine, so we preferred to eat out even though we had a kitchen in the apartment and we could cook there. I remember that I made breakfast only twice. Of course, you may find prices in France a bit high, but we personally don't think about that when we travel abroad because we want to enjoy our stay in a different country and we know we'll be able to save money when we go back to China.
After five days in Paris, we then went to Nice* by train. We spent about nine or ten days in other cities. We rented a car in Nice for one week and travelled to Marseille* and Avignon. I was really impressed with a flea market we went to in Marseille. I bought some bronze cups, dolls and stamps, because they looked very unique.
Speaking of buying, you can use a credit card when travelling abroad. At least this is what we did. We changed around 2,000 RMB in China before going to France. That was around 250 euros. I made a big mistake when travelling to Spain. As far as I remember, I changed money there two times and the exchange rates were low, and I think I lost a lot of money. In France I relied on my credit card and I changed money while I was in China.
* Don’t say a convenient price. Say a reasonable price or a fair price.
Confusing words in English: Famous vs. Popular
Confusing words in English: Crowded vs. Congested
English conversation lessons:
English Conversation: Travel opinions
English Conversation: Travel experience
English Conversation: Travelling in Europe and Asia
English Conversation: Buying sunscreen products at a store
English Conversation: Socialising with people and working in coffee shops
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