I would make the joke that La Poste put the snail into snail mail, but I actually find the French postal service suprisingly quick and reliable (chalk it up to low expectations).
To find a post office (usually designated by PTT on maps), look for the yellow La Poste signs. There’s one in every neighborhood. The Main Post Office (52 Rue du Louvre, 1st M° Louvre-Rivoli, Tel 01 40 28 20 00) is open 24-hours. The others are open weekdays 8am-7pm and Saturday mornings until noon.
Some windows are reserved for banking transactions (La Poste is also a bank in France), so look for Envoi De Lettres Et Paquets or Toutes Opérations. You can also get stamps (timbres) at Tabacs (tobacco shops or cafés with a red, diamond-shaped sign).
Rates (for 2006)
Airmail letters and postcards up to 20 grams are:
- €0.90 to the United States and Canada
- €0.53 within France
- €0.55 to the United Kingdom, Switzerland, and European Union countries.
International Shipping Companies
Run by La Poste, send packages or documents overnight from any post office using special envelopes and boxes. The shipments can be tracked online.
6 Rue des Colonnes, 2nd
Tel 01 55 35 30 30
63 Boulevard Haussmann, 9th
Tel 01 40 06 90 16
107 Rue Réaumur, 2nd
Tel 08 00 87 78 77