Colorful Crocs a fashion faux pas for an American in Paris

Q&A

September 09, 2007|By San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News

I'm traveling to Paris and can't imagine leaving my comfortable Crocs shoes at home. But I don't want to brand myself as an American tourist. Do the French wear Crocs?

We checked with our sources at the French Government Tourist Office in New York, who said Crocs - colorful, casual footwear that resembles Dutch clogs - are definitely not a fashion statement among Parisians. However, they've been spotted on feet (and in stores) along the Riviera, so if you're headed that way, you'll be fine.

Other clothing to avoid if you don't want to be labeled an American in Paris (or most of Europe): shorts, white sneakers, fanny packs and baseball caps with your hometown team's logo.

And don't hang a camera from your neck or use a large foldout map while waiting for the Metro or walking down the street. A small laminated map is better.

Is a train the best way to get from Paris to Nice, France? Can I catch it from Charles de Gaulle International Airport?

A train is a nice way to see the countryside, but you can get to Nice by air ... and it's cheaper and faster.

EasyJet (easyjet.com) has daily flights from de Gaulle Airport to Nice, with fares as low as 10.49 euros (about $14.40), depending on how far in advance you book. Flying time is about 1 1/2 hours.

For train travel, check RailEuro pe.com, which is the U.S. site for France's high-speed TGV trains. We found departures from the Paris Gare de Lyon station for $87 one way; travel time is about five hours, 40 minutes.

Trains (not TGV) also depart from the airport; the cost is $104 one way, and travel time is six hours, 15 minutes.

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