How to Use the Paris Metro

The transportation in Paris can be very overwhelming at first, but with a few tips and general knowledge of the Metro system, you should be off to the Louvre or the Tour Eiffel (EiffelTower) in no time! First things first, the Metro is the mostly underground transportation system that you’ll probably use the most. With Metro stops almost every 100 feet throughoutParis, your never too far from lost if you know the Metro system.  It consists of 14 lines labeled 1-14 all with its own unique color. There are also RER lines A, B, C, D, E, and F that are Regional Lines that you can also ride on with your tickets unless it goes out of the zones noted on your ticket. There is always a map in the Metro stations of all of the Metro routes and zones so if you don’t have a map or an iPhone or smart phone, you can always locate which line you’re at and where it goes. Trust me, I spent many hours staring at maps in the Metro stations guiding my finger along the Metro line route. It’s okay to do that, having a map is probably easier though and if you really want to not be known as a tourist, look at the map well before you enter the Metro.

To purchase tickets at the Metro stations there are a few options that are good to know for different situations. If you plan on only taking the metro one or two times, then you can get away with just buying a single ticket which costs around €1,70 or about $2.13 USD. If you get off at the wrong place, try not to leave the Metro station because you’ll have to buy another ticket. If  you are planning on using the Metro a lot in one day, I’d suggest getting a 1-day-ticket “Mobilis” full fare, Zone 1+2 which is €6,30. If you’re not sure how often you’re going to use the Metro, I’d suggest the carnet of 10 tickets for €12,50. This deal is also great because you can split the tickets between your friends. Finally, if you’re travelling on the weekends or on Public holidays and you’re under 26, you can purchase a 1-day-ticket “Jeunes”, Zone 1-3 for only €3,50. Those are the best options for shorter stays and for extended stays, especially if you’re studying abroad or in Paris for months, you can buy a Navigo Pass which is a weekly or monthly card.
So if you know where you want to go in Paris, look at where it’s at in relation to the Metro lines, find the closest route, or longest if you want an adventure and hop on the Metro! If you are a woman travelling alone or with a group of women, I’d be cautious after Midnight as some lines can get a little sketchy. Throughout the day though, the Metro is perfectly safe. Enjoy the ride, and happy hopping!
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