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Where to buy a frame in Paris?(6 posts)

Where to buy a frame in Paris?hulksmash
Dec 10, 2002 1:27 PM
My wife and I are off to our belated honeymoon in March and I'm hoping to get a good deal on a Look frame. Any francophiles willing to help out with this purchase? Where are some decent shops in the greater metro area? Thanks!
re: Where to buy a frame in Paris?philippec
Dec 10, 2002 2:39 PM
Paris is not a great place to buy a frame -- you are better off looking in the surrounding areas. I can help you w some of the shops that are still Metro/RER accessible. Cycles Laurent near Pl. de la Republique is as good aplace as any to start but they don't carry LOOK. They do carry CYFAC. Veloland in Issy-les-Moulineaux is also a goodish shop, as is Cycles La Gazelle in Boulogne -- but again, the further out you go, the better shops you'll find. LOOKs aren't a tremendously good deal in France if you pay the TVA (sales tax) however, you shpuld be able to get a frame tax-free. Here are some indicative prices (subtract 19% sales tax to get your price):

KG 381i = 1979 Euros
KX= 1499 Euros
KG 361= 899 Euros
KG 386= 1499 Euros
AL 384= 1219 Euros

Drop me a line at philippe.crist@oecd.org if you have ?'s

A+

Philippe
re: Where to buy a frame in Paris?ASiegel993
Dec 10, 2002 4:40 PM
You can also import from the UK for what'll probably end up being a better price. I know it doesn't have the allure of buying it in France, but it's still a better deal probably. I picked up a Culture Velo catalog when I was in Nice this summer and they (a large group of bike stores that carry the same stuff, all under the general banner of Culture Velo) sell the KG381i frame for something around 1900 dollars. totalcycling.com, which is based in Ireland I believe, sells the same frame for between 1320 and 1660, depending on what color scheme you choose. It really would be cool to buy a Look frame in France, but put the 300 dollars or so to a set of Mavics, since they too are French.
-Siegel
About the TVA - or VAT in France.PeterRider
Dec 10, 2002 7:07 PM
I've checked about this last time I went back to France: if you want to get things tax-free, you have to buy at least for 200euros. And all shops don't do this duty-free thing.

The way I understand it is you pay full-price at the shop, they give you a paper that you show/have stamped by the customs, and you send it back to the shop which reimburses you. This is then only interesting on things that are not subject to huge customs taxes. VAT in France (called TVA) is usually 18.6$.

Pierre
My experiences with the TVA - or VAT refund.ms
Dec 11, 2002 6:29 AM
PeterRider is correct about the workings of the TVA refund. In my experience, larger stores or stores that cater to the tourist trade are very adept at the refund process. Smaller stores or stores that are not used to dealing with tourists often will resist doing the paperwork for a TVA refund. When I purchased some things this sumemr at the Galleries Lafayette (a large department store) in Paris, the process worked as follows: (1) I had to obtain a form from the store that listed my purchases -- the store required that I show my US passport as part of the process; (2) at the airport, I had to take the form and the purchases to a designated French customs counter -- the form was stamped and the purchases were inspected; (3) I then had to mail the form to the store (there is a mailbox next to the customs counter at the international terminal at CDG, the store had provided me with a stamped envelope); (4) about two months later the refund appeared on my credit card statement. If you buy a frame, I can see several problems that I did not encounter: (1) my guess is that most bike shops are not used to processing TVA refunds; (2) the place where you have to take the form and purchases for inspection at the airport is after the place where you check baggage and after the security checkpoint -- I do not know how one would process something like a frame which would have to be checked before the security checkpoint; (3) you will have to declare the frame on the US customs form upon re-entry to the US and pay duty on it (travelers can only bring $300.00 or $400.00 worth of goods into the US duty free).
re: Where to buy a frame in Paris?hulksmash
Dec 11, 2002 12:03 PM
Whew! Thanks you guys(gals?) for the info. It does seem rather romantic to be able to buy a French frame in a French shop but I'm under the distinct impression that it'll be easier to go to totalcycling or any of the other online importers. Thanks for the feedback, maybe I'll just spend what I would on the frame and enjoy the fine cuisine and beautiful city sights.