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Updated by Catherine G on Jun 04, 2018
Headline for 7 Parisian Expert Tips for french summer sales
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7 Parisian Expert Tips for french summer sales

Finally, "les soldes" is here! It’s sales season in Paris and both tourists and locals are looking forward to finding great deals, but there is also a sense of dread. The good news is that there is potential for amazing deals on items that are usually beyond the budget of most shoppers. The bad news is the noise, traffic, crowds and the bare carcasses of racks picked almost clean by fellow shoppers. Keep reading to find out exactly how you can survive these annual sales in the city of lights.

Only Two Times A Year? Why?

In France, sales are regulated by the state and usually occur two times a year: in summer time right before Parisians flee to the sea and sun as well as in winter just after Christmas. Designer outlets, boutiques, department stores as well as hardware stores get rid of the previous year's inventory by gradually reducing prices throughout the sales period.

When do the 2017 Summer Sales Start in Paris?

Summer 2017 sales start on Wednesday, June 28th and they end Tuesday, August 8th.
The French government hasn't been as strict with the rules as a result of the ongoing economic crisis and they have allowed stores to put on unofficial sales between the usual periods.
The dates are not known in advance, but keep an eye out for store signs that read "Promotion" (deal) and "Soldes exceptionnels" (exceptional sales).

Getting the Best deals from "Les Soldes": Parisian Expert Tips

How do Parisians "do" the sales? You can find anything from shower curtains to shoes at deep discounts during the regular "soldes" in Paris, but Parisians tend to focus on clothing deals. Now you know why Parisians are always impeccably dressed. Some designers slash their prices by as much as 80%. Here are some tips to get you through the maze like a pro:

Source: https://1001-soldes.com/dates-soldes

1

Catch the early worm.

Catch the early worm.

Just like anywhere else on earth, you can get the best deals at the Paris sales just after they begin. However, Parisians get a jump start by scouting the capital for hot items the day before the sales. They try on many items they are interested in the day before so that they are ready on sales day.

2

Dodge the madness

Dodge the madness

You need a plan, patience and endless energy before attacking the sales in Paris. If you want to avoid getting pushed around by other hurried shoppers, do your shopping mid-week, during lunch hours or first thing in the morning. There is one caution though: A great number of Parisians, in anticipation of the deals, take a day off work, so don't be surprised if the stores are still packed during the week.

4

Know when to splurge

Know when to splurge

The true magic in soldes according to Parisians is the ability to spoil oneself, to pamper yourself with beauty products, clothes, household items and even rare books that are usually too expensive to consider. Therefore, the savvy locals have shopping during soldes down to a science: they know where to find the best deals and when to grab them. The usual deals hotspots range from classic department stores such as Le Bon Marché or Galeries Lafayette, to small, trending discount designer shops or boutiques close to Les Halles or the Marais district.

5

Balance price and good quality

Balance price and good quality

The majority of Parisians attack the sales at the midpoint of the sales season. They know that is when the second price-drops usually happen and they can get amazing deals. If you wait until the very end, you might get even better discounts, but the selection will be limited by then and if you are looking for deep discounts on clothes, you might not find your size in the final days.

7

If you can't get to the sales in person, try shopping online

If you can't get to the sales in person, try shopping online

Many of the top stores in Paris like Galeries Lafayette or Swarovski sell their items online at discount prices. If your French is good, you can also check out specialized online stores such as 1001-soldes.com or L'internaute, which give you a quick overview of where to find the best deals in Paris and they include hundreds of stores. Keep in mind that not every store provides shipping outside of France.

3

Put on light and comfortable clothes

Put on light and comfortable clothes

Parisians usually dress simply to save time when trying on clothes during the sales in winter and summer. Stay away from too much lace or buttons and be sure to wear shoes that are comfortable.
To get your dream item, you might be walking for several miles; therefore a good pair of walking shoes is critical for this trek.

6

Compare prices and read the details

Compare prices and read the details

Shop around and compare prices among the various stores, but be sure to read the return and exchange policy before making your final purchase. During the sales time in Paris, most stores do not allow you to return items.