Jeff Steiner's Americans in France.
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Moving PlannerCost of Living in France

France is cheaper compared to the US if you live there. On the other hand as a tourist, you will find France more expensive. Big-ticket items, house, rent, education, health care, child care tend to cost less than in the states. Whereas every day 'little-ticket' items, food, gas, newspapers, books, clothes and so on tend to be more expensive.

The reason for this are the following, France has an almost 20% sales tax, many food products are from within France, thus the workers are paid a first world wage. Most of the big ticket items, health, education, child care, are subsided by the government, thus bring down their costs.

In general you will find Paris to be expensive, either living there or as a tourist. I know that in most cost of living indexes Paris rates about like New York, generally considered to be the most costly cities in the US.

For more information try these links:
The Cost of Living in France - Two Years Later
Chez Loulou: The Cost of Living in France
Cost of Living in France - Expat Forum

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