Being rich in art, travelers from all over the world flock to Paris to see the works of art. But Paris is not always a beautiful city. The truth is, it is a very big city that can be so confusing and overwhelming to navigate.
You can use taxis to roam around but this can be very expensive. Buses are great, too, but travel in shorter distances that you might need to have two or three bus rides before getting to the place you want.
The Paris Metro, the major railway system in the city, is the best choice for travelers like you. But how will you navigate the Paris Metro? That can be a tricky thing to do but not if you know what to expect.
1. The Map. You need to purchase a Paris map if you don’t plan to get lost in this city. There is a free map especially made for tourists, anyway. This free map is available in every Paris Metro station, newsstand, and hotel in Paris. You can start downloading a copy of this map from RATP website and print that out before leaving for Paris. The RATP website will also help you plan your route when you’re in Paris. You have the option to buy the Plan de Paris booklet, too. This is similar to the free map, only that it is more focused on the famous tourist attractions.
2. Choosing tickets. Getting tickets everyday before you ride the Paris Metro will be very expensive—unless you’ll only ride the Metro once. For tourists, the most advertised type of ticket is the one called Paris Visite Pass. With this ticket, you’ll enjoy unlimited travel within Region 1 to Region 8 for five days. This is the best pick if you’re planning to tour Paris through the Paris Metro within those regions.
You may also choose the standard ticket called the Standard T, which you can purchase in bulk, say per 10 tickets.
Another type you can get is the Carte Orange. This card is actually for France citizens only but some sell this to tourists. You can try getting one especially if you want to take advantage of the savings you’ll get. It’s much cheaper than the Paris Visite Pass. You can also choose with this the zones you want to navigate.
3. Buying tickets. Standard, Carte Orange, and Paris Visite Pass—any of these tickets can be bought from the RER stations, Metro stations, bus terminus sales windows, Paris airports, train suburban stations, Paris hotels, and the corresponding contact of RATP in your area. You’ll need your ticket or your card to enter the Paris Metro. You might as well need it when exiting the Metro. So it’s best you keep your tickets with you all the time.
Navigating the Paris Metro can be confusing but it can also be enjoyable especially if you know how. Learn more of what you should expect once you’re in Paris by visiting the RATP website. You’ll have more fun if you’ll spend lesser time worrying in Paris. So, Bon voyage!