Hotels in the budget and mid-range category are less expensive than those in many other European capitals.By contrast, the city’s four- and five-star hotels are among Europe’s most expensive. Smaller two-star hotels typically charge between €75 and €150 for a double room, though for something with a bit of style you’ll probably have to pay in the region of €120–240. Bargains exist in the 10e, especially around place de la République, and you can also get good deals in quieter areas further out, in the 13e and 14e, south of Montparnasse.
If you want to secure a really good room it’s worth booking a couple of months or more ahead, as even the nicer hotels often leave their pokiest rooms at the back for last-minute reservations, and the best places will sell out well in advance in all but the coldest months. If you find yourself stuck on arrival, the main tourist office will help you find a room in a hotel or hostel free of charge. The tourist office also offers a free online reservation service (Wparis-info.com), with discounts on some hotels.
Most hostels take advance bookings, including the hostel groups: FUAJ (wfuaj.fr), which is part of Hostelling International, and MIJE (wmije.com), which runs three excellent hostels in historic buildings in the Marais. (There is a third big hostel group, UCRIF, but it caters largely to groups; full details can be found online at wucrif.asso.fr.)