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It has been recently reported once again that France holds the world record for attracting the most tourists per year. Undoubtedly the main gate is Paris and for many it is a necessary stop and explore spot, even if moving further out into the country. The most efficient and affordable way to see this spread out city is certainly via the public transit system and how it can be used will be explained here.
Since most visitors fly into the city it is assumed that one will need transit to and from the airport. We advise to skip the taxi line, the Paris metro and bus system is so intricate and well populated with stops, that one will not have to go far at all from the nearest public stop. Single journies to and from the airport cost almost 10 Euros each way and then single rides on the metro and bus system cost a little over one Euro. One’s best option is to go for the Paris Visite Pass. The pass allows one to select particular zones of the metro and how many days it can be used. Each “day” of the Paris Visite ticket begins at 5:30 am, not from the first moment it is swiped. Within the parameters of zones and amount of time specified on the ticket, one has unlimited access to all forms of public transit.
The Pass is a good investment as it is a one time purchase ticket which you keep with you always. If you want your movement to and from the airport included with your inner city travels, select the ticket that covers zones 1-5, otherwise, if you only want to move about in the central areas select the ticket covering zones 1-3. Tickets can be purchased for a time slot of anywhere in between one to five days. This ticket at first looks quite costly, but realize that this is Paris where most things are expensive. If one does the math about how much airport transfers and single journey tickets add up to, this is a bargain. Paris public transport in all forms is covered by this excellent ticket and it is an efficient way to move around in such a large and busy city.
Tickets can be purchased at any station. There are online options too which include a delivery fee for one’s home address or hotel. Honestly for those coming into the airport it is quite feasible to buy it on site with cash or credit card. In Terminals 2 and 3 of Charles de Gaulle airport simply approach the train ticket desk and buy from an agent. Then one can immediately board the trains bound for Paris on the platforms below. The airport train line is called RER B and once in the city it connects to the entire metro system.