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Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

The Casone Exchange
  • May 6, 2008 03:04 PM UTC by Cheryl Casone

    An American Dollar in Paris

    I am back from my reporting adventure in Paris. Did I feel the shock — as in sticker shock? Let me describe it to you this way: There are NO Americans right now in Paris. Sure, I saw the occasional businessman or woman, but overall, the American tourist is NOT in Paris — or in Europe in general.

    First. let’s talk money. Some examples of what we paid in dollars for things while in Paris.

    Bottle of Evian: $12

    Two cocktails at Buddha Bar: $50

    Dinner for two including wine at non-descript French bistro: $180

    3 Nights at Le Meridien Etoile: $975

    Train Ticket Plus Entrance to Versailles Castle: $38

    One way taxi to and from Orly airport: $45

    Are you feeling a little sick yet? Tomorrow, we have a currency expert coming on the show. I knew this trip would cost me, but I also want to know, and plan to ask the guest, exactly who benefits from the weak dollar? I know it’s U.S. companies that export overseas. But how does the weak dollar affect the Germans, the Swiss, the British?

    I’ll post the interview here tomorrow afternoon.

    Also, stay tuned for several more installments of an American Dollar in Paris, including pictures, stories and possibly some video — if I can figure out how to post it.



My wife and I saved money in Paris by going there in the shoulder season, March, by staying there for a full week and by asking the hotel, one we'd enjoyed once before, to guarantee us a rate in dollars. We started planning last fall, and the hotel, in competition with another hotel, did guarantee us such a rate. It also threw in breakfast -- much more than a croissant and coffee -- and it provided a car to meet us at the airport and take us back. Moreover, the drinks in the minibar were free, and the hotel provided free Champagne and other wines, beers and soft drinks in its "living room." We estimate that we saved about $150 a day by taking advantage of the freebies. We also ate fast food at lunch a couple of days and ate those ham and cheese baguettes at lunch. Paris, even with the high costs, is still Paris. WBK

May 7, 2008 at 10:40 am


I took the family to Rome over Thanksgiving and Paris over Easter. It's nice to be able to see such great cultural icons without too many rude tourists blocking the view. I definitely recommend going if you can swing it. If you are adventurous with accomodations, there are plenty of affordable 2 and 3 star hotels in either city that give you a better feel for local life than the swanky ultra modern posh palaces. And a tourist can eat very well without dumping dollars at fancy ristorantes. Most cafes and bars carry full meals for a few euros. Use Expedia or other discout site to book flights and rooms in advance for the main parts and leave some time open for serendipity. Use public transport, it's very cheap and far more abundant than most Americans could imagine. Forget rentals, insurance doubles your cost in France. While in Paris the news readers said 15% fewer American were there and they spent 30% less than normal, which means they are spending the same amount in dollars, just getting less for it. Do the math, that's almost half the euro traffic. So for the first time, I felt truely appreciated in Paris. But go now, before the secret gets out.

May 7, 2008 at 8:56 am

Orlando Reyes Jr.

My family and I were in Europe a year ago, (my wife, 5 year old daughter and both my parents). We spend 21 days in 3 cities (London, Paris and Rome). I though It was expensive then but I just can't beleive how it's gotten. We spent roughly $11,000 and that's taking into account that we stayed with my father in law in Rome so we didn't have to pay for a hotel and our plane tickets round trip were $56 each (due to frequent flyer miles. I'm glad we chose to go when we did otherwise we would not have been able to go this year. I never imagined the euro getting so far ahead of the US dollar. I don't recommend anyone vacationing in Europe at least for 2 years.

May 6, 2008 at 10:16 pm


Ouch. I can't say that I blame people for not wanting to travel to Europe. $12.00 for water is crazy!

May 6, 2008 at 8:04 pm

about this blog

  • Cheryl Casone joined FOX Business Network (FBN) in September 2007 as an anchor. Prior to FBN, Casone served as a correspondent for FOX News Channel’s (FNC) business unit and was a regular guest on FNC’s Your World with Neil Cavuto. Casone brings years of experience covering finance, business, and consumer news to FBN.

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