Essentials > Communication > Computer

 


Using Your Laptop

If you bring your laptop to France, you'll need an adaptor plug (French outlets accept the rounded, two-prong plugs) and possibly a phone jack adaptor to plug in the modem (some hotels have dedicated modem lines in the room). Don’t forget to contact your ISP in advance to find out what the local dial-up number is in France , otherwise you’ll be billed for an international call.

WiFi

Obviously Wireless internet access (WIFI) is much more simple, and happily the French hotels are quickly adopting it to avoid messy re-wiring jobs. A few hotels offer it for free but usually you pay for the usage, either directly online with a credit card or through the hotel reception.

To find the city's many WiFi hotspots, check out this site or this one (which is easier to navigate, but only in French). All of the municipal sites in Paris (museums, librairies, parks, town halls, etc.) now have free WiFi during regular office hours. Check here for the locations. You can also try and find it for free at cafés around town displaying the Wi-Fi symbol (try this site for locations).

If you get desperate, try McDonald's (I know, I know, but the coffee isn't even that bad for €1.10); it's not advertised, just turn on your laptop and "accept" the terms on the McDonald's home page for it to start working. There's no WiFi at the McDonald's on Rue de Rivoli.

Internet Cafés

There are few places to check e-mail in Paris for those who don’t have their smartphone. Hotels and even youth hostels often have a “pay as you go” terminal in the lobby that can be used with a credit card, but these can be quite pricey and slow. Note: If you're looking for a WiFi network and see "Free", it's the name of the service provider, it's not free of charge. 

MilkInternet Hall
Formerly called XS-Arena, there are multiple locations for this chain of large, gamer-friendly internet cafés (there are always computers reserved for internet use, and those for gamers). Good day rates and tech support. They have a few QWERTY keyboards. Can be a bit noisy!

Les Halles  (250 PCs)
31 Blvd Sebastopol, 1st
Tel 01 40 13 06 51
M° Châtelet, Les Halles

Open daily 10am-10pm. From €3/hour.

Montparnasse (70 PCs)
5 Rue d''Odessa, 14th
Tel 01 43 20 10 37
Montparnasse
Open daily 10am-10pm. From €3/hour.

Computer Stores and Technical Assistance

There are two Apple Stores in Paris located at the Carrousel du Louvre and behind the Opéra Garnier

If you need English-language technical assistance, try picking up a free FUSAC magazine at any English-language book store and look under "Services". On last check, I found an ad for Micro-King, which specializes in English-speaking computer services. There are many more, none that I've used myself...yet!

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