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Fast Food in Paris
Not everyone who travels is interested in trying out the local foods of wherever they go. Personally, one of my favorite parts about traveling is trying the specialty foods from that area. But I know that not everyone is like this. I once travelled through four European countries with a family that managed to eat at a McDonald’s in every single country (including Liechtenstein, which isn’t so big).
Some people honestly want to experience new places, but aren’t interested in trying new food. Whether you have dietary restrictions, are a picky eater, or don’t want to worry about the costs of local cuisine, you have the option of grabbing fast food between your tourist activities.
Let’s face it, Paris isn’t exactly known for their quick meals. If you would rather spend your time exploring and sightseeing than spending a few hours eating a meal, then you need to know your fast food options. Honestly, Paris can be a tourist trap. If you want really great food with good service, you will probably have to go off the beaten tourist path. But if you are there for the sightseeing instead of the food, grabbing quick meals will save you a lot of time and money.
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Fast Food Ideas
Food Stands: While exploring Paris, you will come across food stands just about anywhere you go. You can grab a crepe, falafel, or a sandwich from these stands. Eat it as you walk, or sit down for a bit of Paris people watching as you take your quick meal break.
La Boulangerie: Stop by a Paris bakery for some fresh bread, tasty sandwich, or a pastry. You won’t get a four-course meal, but you will eat some wonderful baked goods that will fill you up. Honestly, if you pass one of these places the smell will trap you into buying something delicious.
Museum Food Courts: If your goal is to spend more time sightseeing than eating while in Paris, then don’t even bother leaving the museums. You will find a wide array of decent food in the food courts.
Quick: This hamburger place is similar to McD’s—burgers and pommes frites. It will be like you never left the U.S. These places are all over Paris, so you should be able to find one easily.
McDonald’s: You probably won’t be hard pressed to find a McDonald’s in Paris. The French versions of McDonald’s restaurants aren’t much different from what you will find in the United States—the food is basically the same, you pay the same way, and it is fast. The main difference you will find between a McDonald’s in Paris, France, and a McDonald’s in Paris, Texas, is that you can buy beer at the one in France. If you are having a hard time finding a Mickey D’s in Paris, ask someone where to find the MacDo, and you will be pointed in the right direction.
Oh, and the question you are dying to ask: Do they serve ketchup at French McD’s? You’ll have to find out for yourself.
Fast isn't Always Junk
Not only will finding fast food places in Paris allow you more time to sightsee, but it will probably also save you some money. A lot of restaurants will overcharge for service that isn’t so great—mainly because tourists don’t know where to go for the best food. Instead of falling into a trap, you can simply avoid the fancier restaurants.
Every time I have travelled to France, it has been with young children. Kids are not easy to take ou to eat, but especially not to French restaurants. We tended to check out fast food options, like the food stands and bakeries. Later in the afternoon, you would usually find us at a small café, with coffees and pastries. After the children were snugly in bed at the hotel, we took turns babysitting while everyone else went out to enjoy a late, leisurely French meal. To be honest, the best meals we had were often in our hotel restaurants.