5 Best Tips For Travelling To Paris

This guide of tips for traveling to Paris will help you organize your trip to one of the most charming and most visited cities in the world

Although there are thousands of things to do, a walk along the banks of the Seine at sunset, find the Gioconda in the Louvre, get lost in the neighborhoods of Montmartre or Le Marais, go shopping on the Champs-Elysées or climb to the top of the Tower Eiffel, are just some of the experiences that will make this city become a true obsession and you will only think of returning again and again. Based on the times we have traveled to the City of Light, the last time we wrote this guide to Paris, we have made this list of what we believe are the 10 essential tips for traveling to Paris

1. What is the best time to travel to Paris?

Although any time is a good time to make a trip to Paris, it is the months from June to September when the weather is more pleasant and there is less chance of precipitation. Despite this, this time of year has the great drawback that the prices of accommodation in the city center skyrocket at the same rate as the queues to access the main tourist attractions such as the Eiffel Tower or the Louvre. To visit the city more calmly and save on hotels, it is advisable to travel in spring and autumn, two seasons that if you are lucky with the cold and rain, are also perfect. The worst season is winter when the cold and the short days greatly limit the possibilities of making the most of the city, with only the Christmas period being recommended, when the streets and shop windows are decorated with Christmas motifs and various street markets are set up. 

2. Entry requirements when traveling to Paris

To travel to Paris, if you are Spanish or from a country of the European Union, you will only need to bring your DNI or passport, without the need for a visa. If you are not a citizen of the European Union, we advise you to consult the page of the French Embassy in your country or that of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to see which are the mandatory documents that depend on the type of relationship between the two countries.

Another of the almost mandatory requirements is to carry the European Health Card, which allows you access to French public health. If you do not have the card or you want to be covered in more complicated situations such as repatriation, we recommend that you take out the best possible travel insurance

3 How to go from the Paris airport to the center?

There are three airports through which travelers usually enter Paris: Charles de Gaulle located 25 kilometers away, Orly 15 kilometers away and Beauvais 85 kilometers away. They all have good public and private transport connections to transfer from the airport to the city center or your hotel. The most recommended means of transport for each airport are:

  • Charles de Gaulle: you have the RER B train line, several bus companies such as RoissyBus and Le Bus Direct, the taxi that costs around 50 euros or you can also book this comfortable direct transfer. For more information you can consult this specific post on how to go from Charles de Gaulle Airport to Paris.
  • Orly: you have the Orlybus bus and Le Bus Direct, the combined option of tram and metro, the taxi that costs about 30 euros or the direct transfer that we have previously mentioned. You can expand the information in this post about how to go from Orly Airport to Paris .
  • Beauvais: you have a bus that is synchronized with the arrival flights, the train making transfers at the Beauvais station, the taxi and the private transfer, although the latter two are not recommended due to their high price. More information in this post about how to go from Beauvais airport to Paris. The vast majority of the final or intermediate stops of all these public transports have a connection with the extensive Paris metro line, which will allow you to get to the station closest to your hotel.

4. Where to sleep in Paris?

If you are going to travel to Paris, especially in the months from June to September, it is essential to book as far in advance as possible, if you want to find a good hotel at a good price. The best area to stay in Paris depends a lot on your budget, you have to keep in mind that the center of Paris includes the 1, 2, 3 and 4 districts and the prices per room in high season do not fall below 100 euros per night. Two cheaper areas to look for a hotel are Montparnasse (XIV District), Opera (IX) and Bastille (XI), where you will also have good public transport connections with the center and a wide range of restaurants.

The metro network, which operates between 05:30 a.m. and 01:00 a.m., is our favorite means of transport in the city with which you will avoid heavy traffic. The places that the metro does not reach, such as Disneyland Paris, Versailles or the two airports of the city, are served by lines A, B and C of the RER train. The bus is a bit more confusing and will take longer on the journeys, although it is a good option if you travel between 00:30 and 07:00, when the Noctilien bus is operational. Other little-used transportation options include the tram and the funicular, which takes you to the upper part of the Montmartre district. If you have little time, two highly recommended options are to book the tourist bus or the tourist boat (batobus) that you can use for a whole day and stop at the main attractions of the city.

A good option to save on a hotel is to stay in a district further from the center but with a nearby metro line. We stayed at the Etoile Pereire, located a 10-minute walk from the Arc de Triomphe and 300 meters from the Pereire metro and RER stop. In addition to its magnificent location, the hotel serves a very complete buffet breakfast and has one of the best quality/price ratios in the city.We recommend you use this famous search engine to find the best hotel at the best price. For more information about the best hotels and neighborhoods to stay in, we recommend reading this post about where to stay in Paris.

5. Transportation on a trip to Paris

When traveling to Paris you have to be clear that you will not have problems getting around the city by public transport, as it is one of the cities with one of the most extensive and effective networks in the world. To use all these means of transport, including the RER (only within Paris), you need to buy the t+ Ticket, which costs 1.90 euros per trip or 14.90 euros if you buy 10 tickets.  If you are going to use transport a lot, it may be profitable for you to buy the Paris Visite, which allows you to use it unlimitedly in periods of 1, 2, 3 and 5 days. Depending on the areas you buy them, the transfer to Charles de Gaulle, Orly, Disneyland and Versailles airports is included. 

Remember that if you are going to stay for a full week or a month, it may be more profitable for you to opt for the Passe Navigo card, with more advantages and better prices for those days.

In addition to what has been said about transport, another of the best tips for traveling to Paris is to make a list of the attractions you want to visit, to see if it is better for you to book the Paris Pass card, which includes more than 60 attractions and that in most cases, is a great saving of money to get to know the city.

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