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How to live in Paris on a budget



Young couple shopping at a French grocery
The French are famous for spending a lot on food, so you better know where to go to get your weekly grocery shop | Photo: Anna Tarazevich

There are several reasons why people love Paris: the food, the unstoppable cultural scene, the fact that you can almost walk anywhere. Being affordable, though, isn’t on the top of the list of reasons people dream of living in a city regularly featured in films and books.

With Emily in Paris, the Emmy-nominated show that was Netflix’s most-viewed comedy series of 2020, being renewed for seasons three and four, the cost of living in the second most expensive city in the world, according to a 2021 study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), is very likely to go down.

It isn’t something particularly new for a coffee to cost up to €14 in Paris. And for those looking for a luxury place to stay, hotels like The Mandarin Oriental Paris, launched in 2011 in a 1930s Parisian block of flats which used to house government offices, offers accommodation that can set you back anything from €975 to €20,000 a night. I have never stayed there as, as much as I love old French buildings, my budget doesn’t go anywhere near it. I also avoid very touristy areas when I am in the city for work. Why strategically inflate prices targeting those visiting Paris for a long weekend when you have to stay there for a week or more? There is always a way to find something that fits your pocket – even in Paris!

Here, those who live in the romantic city of lights share how you can save some Euros on food, entertainment, transportation, and even WIFI.


Go to restaurants at lunchtime

“Restaurant menus are cheaper during lunchtime. It’s not restricted to Paris but applies to all cities in France. For around 15-20€ you can have an appetiser, a main course, and a dessert. Those kinds of menus are mainly targeted at office workers. But it doesn’t mean you cannot take advantage of that. So, if you ordered the same thing at dinner time, you would pay around twice as much.”

Ludovic Chung-Sao – Founder of ZenSoundproof


Ask for tap water

“If you want to save money while living in Paris, order tap water at restaurants and never pay for WiFi. In Europe, most restaurants offer bottled water which you have to pay for, so ask for tap water or “une carafe d’eau” instead. Many restaurants, bars, cafes, shopping centres, and parks offer free WIFI, too.”

Jean Gregoire – French engineer and CEO at message app Lovebox


Go cycling

“The cheapest way to get around Paris, aside from walking, of course, is the city’s bike-sharing system—Vélib. With stations all over the city and an ever-expanding bike lane infrastructure, I cannot believe that I only pay €3,10 a month for unlimited 30-minute rides.”

Ellen Hilton – Blogger at Américaine in France

Netflix’s series Emily in Paris, featuring actress Lily Collins, has been renewed for seasons 3 and 4.

Hang out in the Latin Quarter
“Lesser known to tourists, the Latin Quarter is home to Sorbonne University, one of the top colleges in France. In this charming neighbourhood resting on the Left Bank, you’ll find affordable student hangouts like authentic Parisian cafes and vibrant food stalls on Rue Mouffetard. My go-to spot for a quick, cheap bite is Au P’tit Grec, where you can fill up your belly with giant savoury crepes for less than €10.”

Gigi Chow – Content creator at Wet Nose Escapades


Visit a food market at the right time

“The French are famous for spending a lot on food (more than twice as much as Americans, in terms of percentage of weekly expenditures). But you can keep costs low with a few simple tricks. First off, eat in grocery stores and specialty shops, as they are far cheaper than a restaurant, and they still have great quality products. Visit the markets around closing time (1pm-ish) to get good deals from purveyors hawking what’s left. Get your wine from the wine aisle in the grocery store – you will find fantastic bargains. And when eating out, go at lunchtime, when many restaurants have a lunchtime prix fixe deal that’s super affordable. Other affordable luxuries include croissants (about €1.50) and bread, which costs around €1,20 for a high-quality baguette de tradition, which is made using the traditional French methods of making bread.”

Emily Monaco – Paris-based tour guide

Marcio Delgado is a Journalist, Producer and Influencer Marketing Manager working with brands and publications in Europe, America and Asia.


Model-turned-comedian to star in BBC fashion drama



Model-turned-comedian to star in BBC fashion drama
Written, created by and starring British actor Michelle De Swarte, Spent launches this Summer

A new six-part comedy-drama created by and starring Michelle De Swarte (The Baby, The Duchess) will premiere this summer on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer.

‘Spent’ is produced by BAFTA award-winning production company Various Artists Ltd. (Juice, I May Destroy You, Such Brave Girls, Sally4Ever). It is part-inspired by Swarte’s own experiences of the modelling industry and the trials and tribulations that come along with it. Michelle de Swarte stars as Mia, a former catwalk model who is on the run, mainly from herself. Long term it’s a story of personal renewal but for now, the stark reality is that her career is over, she’s flat broke and she’s homeless.

Alongside Swarte, the series stars Juliette Cowan, Amanda Wilkin, Matt King, Jamali Maddix, Karl Collins, Eleanor Nawal and Rachel Ofori.

Born in South London, Michelle De Swarte was scouted at 19 whilst working in Segaworld in the Trocedero Centre at Picadilly Circus. Soon after, Swarte moved to New York where she worked for major major fashion houses round the world including Burberry, Missoni, Tommy Hilfiger, Cartier, and Michael Kors. However, Swarte’s career as a runway model stopped abruptly and she moved back to London with nothing to show for her time in the fashion industry. Having to re-evaluate her career, Swarte transitioned to stand-up comedy and acting where she has starred as a series regular in Katherine Ryan’s series The Duchess for Netflix and had her first leading role in Sky/HBO’s The Baby.

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UK Police officer who ran down cow removed from duties



UK Police officer who ran down cow removed from duties
The incident took place on Friday on a residential street in Staines-upon-Thames, UK at around 9pm

An officer who was driving a response police car to ram an escaped cow twice has been removed from frontline duties, Surrey Police has confirmed in a statement released on Sunday, June 16th.

The incident took place on Friday on a residential street in Staines-upon-Thames, UK, at around 9pm, where the animal was hit in front of members of the public.

“I fully appreciate the distress our handling of this incident has caused and will ensure that it is thoroughly and diligently investigated. In addition to an internal referral to our Professional Standards Department, we have also referred the matter to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) for independent consideration,” said Deputy Chief Constable Nev Kemp.

“At this time, the officer who was driving the police car has been removed from frontline duties pending the outcome of these investigations.

“I know there is much concern around the current welfare of the cow. She is now back with her owner and recuperating with her herd. She did sustain a large cut to one leg and cuts and grazes. She continues to be monitored by a vet and our rural officers are staying in contact with the owner for updates.

“I can confirm that on the night, efforts were made to contact local vets without success and efforts were simultaneously being made to identify the owner.  Why these were unsuccessful and what more could and should have been done will form a key part of the investigation.

“As well as our overriding duty to protect the public, the welfare of animals is important to us and we know people want answers about how this happened and what led up to it. I am committed to ensuring that we have a full understanding of what took place and why, and we will fully support any investigation. I have also briefed the Home Office on what action we are taking and we are liaising with several animal charities that have been in touch with us about this incident.  

 “We will continue to provide both our local communities and the wider public with updates as investigations into this matter continue”.

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Appetite for Ozempic boost Novo Nordisk brand value up 59%



A woman checks her toned image in a mirror
Novo Nordisk emerges as Denmark’s second most valuable and second fastest-growing brand | Photo: Szabolcs Toth

Novo Nordisk, the pharmaceutical company producing semaglutide drugs Ozempic and Wegovy which are in high demand for weight loss, is now Denmark’s second most valuable brand according to new data from Brand Finance, the world’s leading brand valuation consultancy. Second only to LEGO, Novo Nordisk is valued at DKK35.4 billion, up 59%. Now also Denmark’s second-fastest growing brand, Novo Nordisk has surpassed  LVMH to become Europe’s most valuable company by market cap.

LEGO is Denmark’s most valuable brand for the ninth consecutive year, with a 3% brand value increase to DKK55.2 billion. With an AAA Brand Strength Index (BSI) rating, LEGO also remains Denmark’s strongest brand, underscoring decades of built-up brand equity and enduing nostalgia, demonstrated by excellent scores for familiarity, satisfaction, and consideration.

Tryg is Denmark’s fastest-growing brand, up 62% to DKK11.0 billion. Brand Finance data shows the brand is well-known and highly reputable across Denmark.

David Haigh, Chairman and CEO, Brand Finance, commented:

“The massive and unrelenting demand for semaglutide has led to Wegovy and Ozempic supply shortages while also dramatically raising brand awareness for Novo Nordisk. With projected sales growth of 19-24% for 2024, the pharmaceutical company must expand production while strategically positioning its brand to stay ahead of emerging competitors. If Novo Nordisk manages its brand well while successfully meeting demand for its products, it could surpass LEGO in the 2025 rankings, blocking LEGO from a decade-long reign as Denmark’s most valuable brand.”

Vestas, Danfoss, and ROCKWOOL are Denmark’s strongest industrial brands. Vestas (brand value up 6% to DKK23.9 billion), the strongest industrial brand with a BSI score of 82.4 out of 100 and an AAA- rating, notes high scores across several brand strength metrics, including reputation and promotion. Danfoss (brand value up 10% to DKK12.4 billion) ranks second, with an AA+ rating. ROCKWOOL (brand value DKK3.6 billion) maintains an AA+ rating and ranks as Denmark’s third strongest industrial brand, boasting a BSI score of 75.3 out of 100. ROCKWOOL performs well across brand strength metrics, such as promotion and its ability to command a price premium.

As part of its brand valuations, Brand Finance analyses the contribution of sustainability on overarching brand value. Brand Finance quantifies brands’ sustainability perceptions in its Sustainability Perceptions Index. According to Brand Finance research, Vestas is recognised as the most sustainable Danish industrial brand across the environmental and social dimensions of ESG (environmental, social, and governance). ROCKWOOL ranked second across all three ESG dimensions among Danish industrial brands, attributed to its commitment to climate resilience and sustainability.

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