4-9 Jul 2016 Paris (France)
Welcome to Paris > Transports
Paris has a well-developed network of public transportation (RATP). It includes the métro (within Paris intra-muros and nearest cities), RER (suburban express railway), tramways and buses. Alternatively, you can also hire a bike (“Velib’”), or try to catch a taxi (if you are of the patient type!).
Here is some basic information for your arrival and your stay in Paris:
From airports to Paris
There are many ways to reach Paris from the CHARLES DE GAULLE (CDG, north of Paris), or ORLY (south of Paris) airports. Choose the most convenient, according to the time of your arrival/departure and the location of your hotel.
Prefer the RER during rush hours (for example, to Paris: end of afternoon on Sundays, or from 8 am to 10 am on week days). There are information desks at the airport. See also the website of Aéroports de Paris.
From Roissy Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG)
There are two RER stations at the airport: Aéroport CDG 1 (Terminals 1 and 3), and Aéroport CDG 2 (Terminal 2 A, B, C, D, E, F, G). Depending of your terminal, you can reach the station by foot, by bus, or with the shuttle train CDGVAL. Follow the sign “Paris par le train/Paris by train”. At the station, buy a ticket for central Paris (prefer express/direct trains). First station in Paris is Gare du Nord, last is Cité universitaire.
Connects CDG (Terminals 1, 2AC, 2BD, 2EF, 3) to Paris-Opera, where you will find RER A and Metro (M7 and M8) connections. From your terminal, follow the sign ‘Bus”. You can buy your ticket directly in the bus or at automatic machines nearby.
From Orly Airport (web site)
Get the ORLYVAL at door K in West Terminal or at Door A (departure level) in South Terminal. You can buy your combined ticket for Paris at the departure station. At the ORLYVAL terminus (Anthony RER station), take the RER B bound to “Mitry-Claye” or ‘Roissy-Aéroport CDG”. All trains call at central Paris. First station in Paris is Cité universitaire, last is Gare du Nord.
Take the shuttle bus “Paris par le train/Paris by train” in either West or South terminal. At the shuttle destination (Pont-de-Rungis RER station), take the RER C named “NORA” or “GOTA” bound to “Pontoise” or “Montigny Beauchamp” and stops at Paris-Austerlitz (M10, RER C). You can buy your ticket directly in the bus.
Operates from West Terminal (Door D, arrival level) and South Terminal (Door K) and connects Orly to Place Denfert Rochereau (southern Paris), where there are RER B and Metro connections (M4 and M6).
Operates from West Terminal (Door C, arrival level) and South Terminal (Door L) and connects Orly to Paris-Etoile/Champs Elysées, with stops at Gare Montparnasse and Invalides. You can buy your ticket directly in the bus, or online.
From BEAUVAIS Airport (website)
You have few choices to go to Paris from this airport which is located 80 km north of Paris and operates only a few airline companies (Ryan air, Wizz air ...).
Connects Beauvais Airport to Paris-Porte Maillot where there are RER C and Metro connections (M1). Pick up point is between the two terminals. You can buy your ticket in the Terminal 1 or at the bus office in front of the Terminal 1, or online for a cheaper fare.
Getting around in Paris and the suburbs
It is very easy to get around in Paris by public transportation. The RATP network is dense and wherever you want to go, you will find a Metro (M), a RER, a bus or a tramway (T) to bring you to your destination. All your need is a transport ticket and the RATP map.
You can obtain a map, for free, in all information desks and ticket offices present in most of Metro and RER Stations.
You can also load a free RATP application on your mobile, translated in many languages and with most of the functionalities accessible even when you are offline, so free of charge.
Tickets and fares
Transport fares are depending of the rate zones you are travelling from, through and to. Rate zones are organized in concentric circles around Paris. Zones 1-2 correspond to Paris intra muros and the nearest suburbs and so on, till zone 5 and 6, which cover the outlying suburbs (see figures below).
You CAN’T use the same ticket t+ for a connection between a Metro and a Bus, or between a RER and a tramway.
When you change from a Metro to a RER, and to go out of the RER, you have to validate again the SAME ticket. Don’t loose it during your journey!
Where to buy tickets and travel cards
You can buy all kind of tickets for Metro and RER at automatic machines (credit cards and change) and in the ticket offices present in the main Metro/RER stations (for Navigo travel Card for example). In the bus, you can only buy a single ticket for your journey, which will be more expensive (2 euros) than the ticket t+.
Getting around at night in Paris
Metro operates from 5:30 am to 0:30 am during weekdays, and till 1:30 am on Fridays and Saturdays nights. If you need a transport at night, you can either hire a bike or take a “Noctilien” which is a night bus from the RATP. Noctilien circulate from 0:30 am to 5:30 and cover all the Paris and Ile-de-France area. There are accessible with a Navigo travel card, or a ticket. More information.
Getting around by bike
Paris hosts a very large bike-sharing service called Velib’, covering the whole city with 1 800 bike stations. You can take and return the bike at the station you want, with no need of booking it in advance. Short terms subscriptions for 1-day (1,70 €) or 7-day (8 €) can be done online or directly at every Velib station, with a credit card.
Uber services are now available in Paris. Check at its website.