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Paris unveils 'shopping passport' for tourists

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File photo: OliBac/Flickr
10:57 CEST+02:00
Shopaholics take note. The city of Paris has launched a new 'Shopping Passport' to try to get tourists off the city's streets and into its shops. The scheme promises savings in hundreds of boutiques across the French capital.

In an effort to boost local businesses and drive up retail sales, Paris’ tourist office launched a new ‘Paris City Shopping Passport’ this week, offering 10% reductions in more than 270 participating boutiques.

In 2011, the French capital attracted roughly 29 million tourists and with 45 percent of annual visitors spending their money in shops, Paris beats Milan and London as the world’s premier shopping destination, according to figures in French daily Direct Matin.

However, the new initiative will hope to confirm the City of Light’s place at the top of the global "shopping list".

The pass itself appears to resemble a pink credit card and can be used for three consecutive days, once it’s activated.

It will give purchase-hungry visitors access to a bargain or two at the five major Paris hubs of Gare du Nord, Pyramides, Gare de Lyon, Gare d’Est, and Anvers, as well as when used on the city’s main tourist website www.parisinfo.com.

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According to figures in Direct Matin, the Chinese, Japanese and Mexicans are the most irresistibly drawn to Paris boutiques, with the Chinese spending on average €1,400 per person, per trip.

In total, however, the capital’s tourist office estimates that foreign tourists spend a whopping €3.75 billion in Paris shops each year.

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