The Scene In Paris: Fewer Tourists, More Armed Guards : Parallels France is the world's most-visited country, but thousands of tourists have canceled trips since the Paris attacks. Big conventions have been postponed. Music acts like U2 have canceled concerts.

The Scene In Paris: Fewer Tourists, More Armed Guards

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Now thousands of tourists have canceled trips to France in the days since the Paris attacks. Lauren Frayer reports on what the tourist industry is doing.

LAUREN FRAYER, BYLINE: Study abroad student Juliet Bartz sneaks out of her Paris apartment for an interview on the street.

JULIET BARTZ: It feels nice to walk around because I've just been cooped up all day. My roommates and I are packing up everything and coordinating our flights. And it's kind of a domino effect. We're all kind of influenced by each other's fear.

FRAYER: Her program kept them indoors during last week's police raids. Now classes have resumed. But 20-year-old Bartz, who calls herself a 9/11 kid - she's from New York - is cutting short her stay, and so are many of her classmates.

BARTZ: A lot of French people - it's so upsetting, but this is their home. This is where they live. Life goes on. But for us, we have one month left here. It's not going to be normal by the time we leave. So is it worth staying in a Paris that requires us to be indoors and not do the things that we came to do?

FRAYER: Like going to museums, the Eiffel Tower, which have now reopened but remain under armed guard. To go Christmas shopping, you face airport-like security checks at department stores. Two big Paris chains say they've suffered a 30 to 50 percent drop in sales.


FABIAN: Nice to meet you.

GABBY: Nice to meet you - Gabby.

FABIAN: Gabby, I'm Fabian. Where are you from?

GABBY: Dallas.

FRAYER: Fewer tourists than usual show up for a bike tour called Paris Charms and Secrets. The company usually does three tours a day. Now they're down to one.

OLIVIER MARIE-ANTOINE: We have loads and loads of cancellations.

FRAYER: The tour company's founder, Olivier Marie-Antoine, has his office 500 yards from the Bataclan, the music hall where scores of people were killed.

MARIE-ANTOINE: Two of our guides went to do the whole tour to see whether it was safe or not. Police were everywhere, everywhere in Paris. So not saying that things cannot happen, but at least there's a huge amount of police and army. And we avoid every places where it's crowded.

FRAYER: Crowded places, like hotels and restaurants on Paris' most famous avenue, the Champs Elysee.

PASCALE LORNZENE: I'm Pascale. I'm the manager of the restaurant.

FRAYER: Pascale Lornzene hired an armed guard to man the door of his restaurant. He says reservations are down 10 to 20 percent. Hotels and airlines report similar losses.

LORNZENE: It's the same thing everywhere. Lunchtime is for business, and they have to do business. For dinner time, it's worse. People are a little bit afraid.

FRAYER: He says he thinks it reminds them too much of that night 130 people were killed, some on cafe terraces. Outside, a couple of Mexican honeymooners browse the menu. They've got their choice of empty restaurants.

ALEJANDRA RIBERA: (Speaking Spanish).

FRAYER: "It seems so quiet," says Alejandra Ribera, on her first trip to Paris. She said she's still a little frightened. But her husband, Gil Manuel, interrupts. We're going to the Eiffel Tower tonight, he says. And we might even have the place to ourselves. For NPR News, I'm Lauren Frayer in Paris.

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