We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Need December Apartment Advice

Aurora, Colorado
Level Contributor
442 posts
60 reviews
Save Topic
Need December Apartment Advice

I've decided to spend December in Paris. I fell in love with it on my visit a couple of weeks ago and am thrilled at the idea. I am a single female and I've never rented an apartment and even with a lot of reading, I'm not sure which area would be good for me to focus on. I've looked at vacation rentals here and VRBO, and know I will need a studio, good location (not sure what that would be), safe and affordable. I don't know where to start...any advice? Thanks so much with any help as I plan this incredble month!

Paris, France
Level Contributor
16,988 posts
20 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

Where did you stay on this last trip? Or were there any neighborhoods that were your favorite? It would also be helpful to know your budget.

Houston
Level Contributor
376 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

What a wonderful plan! What you might do is narrow down the areas you are interested, (for example, the 3rd, the 5th and the 6th or whichever ones you like). Look at the ones in your budget. Then look for amenities you definitely want, i.e. washer/dryer, free phone calls to the States, wi-fi, elevator, etc.

That should narrow the search down some more, then look at reviews to weed out more, then post several choices on TA and get opinions to pick the best one for you.

I've used VBRO and VIP with good results. A couple of other sites to look at are

Paris Best Lodge http://www.parisbestlodge.com/

and

Adrian Leeds

http://adrianleeds.com/

Takapuna, New...
Level Contributor
3,501 posts
40 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

I've used Friendly Rentals many times in the past and found their apartments to be true to the web description. The web site is very easy to use, shows the exact location of the apartment, and classifies it as Standard, Comfort or Premium. You search for the dates you want, then have the option of immediate reservation. They have a large number of studios available for the whole of December starting from 43 euros per night.

friendlyrentals.com/en/…accommodation-221.htm

Bellingham, wa
Level Contributor
45 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

This may raise the ire of some TA regulars (still figuring out the etiquette here:-) but--there is a regular poster on Fodor's France forum, Nikki, who goes to Paris regularly and rents a small apartment. You might search for her posts. Just another quiver in your research arsenal.

Aurora, Colorado
Level Contributor
442 posts
60 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

Thank you all very much! I wasn't sure this was an okay topic to ask, but your help is much appreciated. The problem is that I was there a short time, one night in the Concorde Opera because it was next to St. Lazarre where the train to Vernon left from. The extra days I spent were at the Mercure near Paris Nord Terminal since I was taking the Eurostar at the end of the stay.

I did some traveling around, but don't have any idea where I was and since living there, well spending a month to start with, was the furtherest thing from my mind at the time, I didn't pay attention or look for anything. So I don't really even know what areas to look at, even after reading posts, there are so many ideas and much about different areas.

I'll check out the links, thanks, and my budget is quite small, but I don't know what is reasonable. I will check out the less than 50euro a night ones first, that would be about what I'm looking for if they are safe. I don't care about free US calls, there isn't any need for that, but wifi, and washer/dryer would be important.

This is just so crazy to even think about, but I'm so excited to do this. After all, Colorado is just a day away if I need to get back, right? :-) ALL info is welcome! Thanks all!

Edited: 21 May 2013, 03:33
Little Rock
Level Contributor
616 posts
114 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

www.airbnb.com

You can look up apartments based on budget and arrondissement.

Aurora, Colorado
Level Contributor
442 posts
60 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

These are great sites, any idea of which arrondissements to check out?

New Hampshire
Destination Expert
for Paris
Level Contributor
21,261 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

The most often recommended, though for tourists, are (in no particular order) the Marais (3rd), St-Germain (6th), Latin Quarter (5th).

For a month long stay, you'd have to determine your priorities. Since you'll have plenty of time, do you "need" to be in walking distance (especially in winter) from some of the "major sights and attractions", the Louvre, the Seine? With a modest budget, you'll likely do far better on the outer edges of those areas, even "over the border" into the double digit arrondissements (such as 11, 12, 13, 14).

Know that visiting Paris during the Christmas/New Year's holidays is very popular (and rates are often adjusted upward for those dates), so it could be a challenge to find a place available for the entire month at this late date for this year.

Budget apartments also tend to be very small (but cozy, efficient, not necessarily cramped) and studio apartments will likely have a foldout sofa bed or Murphy (usually very comfortable) that may consume most of the floor space of the living area when unfolded/down. They also tend to have tiny bathrooms (shower, often quite compact, only) and flights of curving, narrow, stairs in buildings with no elevators. If you don't want to climb more than a few flights of stairs, know, too, that elevators are often out of order in buildings that have them, so, if stairs don't appeal to you, don't choose too high a floor.

As a woman alone, you'd want to know the exact address of the apartment ahead of booking so you can check out the neighborhood on Google Maps, street view. Since it gets dark early in December, you would probably want to be sure of a "comfortable" walk home from the nearest metro station or bus stop. You'd also want to determine the proximity of supermarkets, cafes, appealing dining spots, pharmacie, patisserie, etc. It's far better, especially in winter, if those are within steps rather than many blocks.

I'm a huge fan of the buses, versus the metro, so like to be near one or more convenient routes to all over with the fewest transfers. But, same would go for the metro. It's better if you won't have to transfer at one of the gigantic stations, where many lines are served, every time you go and return.

You'll get lots of help here...

1 post
Save Reply
9. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

Hey I'd love it if you wouldn't mind keeping me in the loop of what you do. I'm a single female planning a two week trip next fall (I'm a single mom so it'll take forever to save up lol). I have no idea where to start and, honestly, not enough time to spend on here reading up on all this. Obviously safety is important as a single female so let me know what you come up with.

I know I'm stoked for my trip and bet you are too. Can't wait to see what you do.

New Hampshire
Destination Expert
for Paris
Level Contributor
21,261 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Need December Apartment Advice

<< I have no idea where to start and, honestly, not enough time to spend on here reading up on all this. Obviously safety is important as a single female so let me know what you come up with.>>

Actually, it would very much behoove you to spend the time, do your own research and homework...

There is much to know when booking a rental in Paris and the amount of time and effort you put into choosing the "perfect" property will be directly proportionate to your satisfaction with same.

I'm one who is highly leery of Airbnb. For one thing, you have to pay, immediately, the entire balance up front. If, on arrival, anything is seriously not as promised, Airbnb is a "mediator" between you and the owner, and all may not be resolved to your benefit, or at all, as they could very well determine that you are "unreasonable" and favor the owner. So, it is absolutely essential to subscribe to "due diligence". Experiences are overwhelming positive, but many are not, and may not be included in the "reviews". To wit: plenty of people have reported their comments could not be posted because they rejected the place (whether or not they were ultimately reimbursed).

Frankly, this is not an "LOL" matter if you don't want to be disappointed or "stuck" in a place dreadfully below what is promised in a listing, or, on arrival, having to scramble for something else, which is beyond challenging in "fall".

Further, Airbnb assumes no responsibility for anything that goes wrong beyond the preliminary check-in period. So, if the elevator goes out of order, the washer/dryer is out of commission, the cable TV/WiFi vanishes, even if you have no heat, hot water, telephone service, there are plumbing problems, well, all bets are off.