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I've recently booked a campsite in southern France and paid €50 to hold the booking. I have now been told by the campsite that I need to pay an extra €100 returnable deposit now and the other €30 for the booking on arrival. Is this normal in France? I've never been asked for a deposit at a campsite before. The request for deposit is genuine.

  • What campsite is this? What does your booking confirmation say? – JoErNanO Aug 19 at 21:05
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It is not uncommon for French campsites to ask for a deposit which will be returned at the end of your stay:

Caution

La plupart des campings demandent le dépôt d’une caution. Cette caution, qui varie généralement de 50 € à 300 € selon le camping, devra être réglée en euros ou en monnaie locale et, la plupart du temps, en espèces, même sur les campings français ; il n’est pas toujours possible de la payer en carte de crédit ou en chèque. Elle vous sera restituée lors de votre départ. Vous trouverez tous les détails sur vos documents de voyage.

The quoted text says that the deposit is usually paid cash upon arrival since it's not always possible to do so using cheques or bank cards.

Giving a deposit is especially common if you are booking a mobil-home or a bungalow. Just make sure that the campsite is asking you for a deposit (French caution) which must be returned at the end of your stay, as opposed to a downpaynent to secure the booking (French accompte).

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