Camping holidays, French Supermarkets general shopping, bags and rubbish!
This may seem a very unusual topic, but something you really have to think about when you are going on your family camping holiday in France.
You see, when you go shopping in France at one of the French supermarkets, the first thing you will probably notice is that you need a Euro in which to get a trolley (although some places you can also use a 50 cent piece), so make sure you have at least one Euro handy, as not all supermarkets have baskets!
When you get to the check-out you will normally have to provide some form of identification such as your passport or one of the new style driving licences (the old paper versions are not acceptable), if you are paying by credit or debit card, although cash doesn’t cause this same issue.
Also, there are hardly any supermarkets or shops that will provide plastic carrier bags and the first time in France at the local supermarket we ended up hunting for a box in which to put all our shopping in. Yet if they do supply carrier bags, you will have to pay for each one you use, so a good idea is to make sure you bring along some of the re-useable bags like you now get in the UK, which of course is helping to save the environment at the same time.
Now, if you are doing some touring in France with either your caravan, motorhome or with your car and tent, then you are likely to have rubbish you need to dispose of along the way. Whilst in the UK we are used to using dustbin bags, when you are on holiday a dustbin bag is normally too large because you do not have the space nor the facilities to keep your rubbish that long - not that you would even want to! So, in essence, do not even bother with dustbin bags.
Although, the normal bin bags can come in handy, especially if you are staying on one of the French campsites for a short while, even though now-a-days there are lots of the campsites in France that now have selective sorting for rubbish, rather than everything going into one bin.
Yet, a very good and easy option, is to make sure you bring with you some plastic carrier bags or a roll of the small bin bags that you would normally use in a waste paper basket as these are convenient for the odd small bits of rubbish and will easily fit into any bin, even when you are travelling through France stopping at one of the many Aires for lunch, etc.
This way, you do not have to keep hold of the tea bags, odd uneaten sandwiches, left over fruit, etc that can all give off all those unwanted smells and attract flies until you get to your destination, especially in the heat of summer and they are easy to store, not taking up hardly any room in a cupboard within the caravan or motorhome, plus could even fit into the glove compartment of your car!
Another thought is when you are generally visiting one of the French towns or villages. So, with this in mind, have you even seen those little packets that you can buy, which is basically a shopping bag, yet compact and fold up neatly so small that they will even go into a handbag? Well, we have found that even these are invaluable, especially if you are visiting one of the French markets or just happen to see something you wish to buy on the spur of the moment - and personally, a must have item for when you are visiting France on a camping holiday.
We hope that this has helped you get a little more prepared on a rather strange yet possibly obvious aspect, but if you have any other comments or scenarios do let us know as they are always greatly appreciated.