How to get to the Paris airports ?
Going away is always fun ! However, going to the Paris airports can be a lot less fun … It’s always difficult to choose how to get there since there are so many options : bus, metro/RER, taxi…Here are all your best options so that you can easily choose according to your budget, how much time you have, etc.
There are 2 main Paris airports – Orly and CDG (Charles De Gaulle) / Roissy so first make sure you know which one you’re going to ! Be careful if you ask someone for directions to get to Charles De Gaulle as you’ll have to be a bit more specific… indeed if you ask for Charles de Gaulle some people may send you to Les Champs Elysées thinking you want to go “Charles de Gaulle Etoile metro station” which is on line 1 / RER C by the Arc de Triomphe!! Most Parisians refer to the Paris airport as “Roissy” which is the name of the town is in, so ask them how to get to “Roissy Charles de Gaulle”. Confusing!
For general Paris airports information, to reserve a parking space, to see if a flight is on time, see the airport map visit www.aeroportsdeparis.fr
How to get to Orly :
Orly is the Paris airport located south of Paris. It is the secondary Paris hub for domestic and overseas territories flights of Air France and as the homebase for Transavia France. The airport handled 29 million passengers in 2014. It features flights to destinations in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Caribbean, North America and Southeast Asia.
First of all, you can use public transportation such as Metro/RER/Tram. It starts around 5am so it should be fine if you have an early flight ! It’s a great option if you have a Navigo Pass as now they cover the cost of going all the way to the airport in the monthly fee 70 euros per month. In the past, if you had a pass zone 1-2, you’d have to pay extra to get from Paris center to the airport but it’s over now!
2 choices for the RER : You can go on RER C (direction Pont de Rungis or Massy Palaiseau – stop at Pont de Rungis – aéroport d’Orly). It’s great if you come from the center of Paris like St Michel or Invalides.
You can also go on RER B (towards Massy or Saint Remy Les Chevreuses and stop at Antony and switch to the ORLYVAL shuttle train). It’s still good if you live in the north of Paris as it goes very quickly from North to South !
If you have a Navigo Pass you won’t have to pay anything for the RER, but you will have to pay for the Orlyval shuttle, so RER C would be the least expensive option. For those who do not have a Navigo an RER ticket will cost between 6 and 12 euros depending on your place of origin.
You can also use the Tramway. Tramway N°7 connects Villejuif-Louis Aragon, terminus of the metro line 7, to Aeroport Orly. That’s worth it if you already live or come from the south of Paris otherwise it may be too long. It’s a very cheap option though as a tram ticket is only 1 euro 80 !
Regarding the journey time, it obviously depends on where you come from but if you leave from the center of Paris, it should take between 30 and 40 minutes for the 2 RER options and it will be 30 mins from Villejuif-Louis Aragon by tram.
First of all there is the Orlybus that provides a link between Paris (Denfert-Rochereau station) and Paris-Orly. The cost is 7.70 euros for a journey of about 30 minutes. It starts at 5 :30 in the morning. They are very frequent so you don’t necessarily have to buy a ticket in advance. Also the Navigo pass is accepted so it won’t cost you anything if you have one!
There is also a Le Bus Direct (it used to be called Les Cars Air France but the name almost made you feel like you could only use the coach if you traveled with Air France so it’s less confusing with a new name!). It offers comfortable and secure direct connections between the city centre of Paris and Orly. The service changed a little bit as well with an upgrade : more routes to Paris, an even better service and simplified rates. A one-way ticket to Orly is 12 euros and return is 20 euros. They added stops at The Eiffel Tower, Trocadéro and La Motte-Picquet. There is free Wifi and USB plugs at each seat and the plus is that there is staff to help and inform you at all times. You can buy your ticket online in advance to save time!
One great option is Le Cab, the leading Parisian private driver service (VTC). The company, founded end of 2012, was created on a simple idea: give Paris an alternative to taxis and personal cars. It is a great option as they have a fixed price to the airport and it is very easy to book ! 37 euros to Orly. Obviously an easy and relaxing journey for you, no stress, no lugging suitcases ! Just be sure to give yourself enough time if there is traffic. You can also schedule a Le Cab for an airport pick up on your return.
Other options are Uber, VTC Cab (A Made in France service similar to Uber) or a Taxi. Indeed, with Uber you can’t book in advance so you have to wait til you’re ready to leave and see if there is a driver nearby and then you have to make sure the price given is suitable for you, if the Uber drivers are busy you may have to either choose a higher price to go right away or wait for the peak period to be over. With a taxi, the price is on the meter which means the longer it takes to get to destination the more you pay. Also if you call a taxi the meter will be turned on as soon as the driver heads your way, so when you get in the car you will already owe. Taxis also charge for each suitcase and a fee for the fourth passenger. The rates are higher on Sundays, holidays and evenings. The good thing though is if you had planned on going to the airport by public transportation and there is a problem on the line, you can easily grab a taxi or VTC to make sure you don’t miss your flight ! The main Parisian companies for taxis are Alpha Taxis, Les Taxis Bleus, Taxis G7 and G7 Horizon.
How to get to Roissy-Charles de Gaulle :
The CDG airport is one of the world’s principal aviation centres, as well as France’s largest international airport. The airport handled 64 million passengers in 2014 or two-thirds of the Paris airports traffic. That’s 465 thousand take-offs and landings in a year. It is named after Charles de Gaulle, the President of France from 1959 to 1969. It is located northeast of Paris. Flights go to North America and all over the world.
Only one way to get there : RER B
The station « Aéroport Charles de Gaulle 1 » serves terminals 1 and 3.
The station « Aéroport Charles de Gaulle 2 – TGV» serves terminals 2 ACDEF and G.
Terminal 2G is linked to terminal 2F by the free N2 shuttle.
The cost of a ticket is just under 10 euro but it’s free with a Navigo pass.
Buses / Coaches :
The Roissybus shuttle provides a link between the centre of Paris (Opéra station) and Paris-Charles de Gaulle. The cost is 11 euros for a 60-minute journey but free with a Navigo pass. They are very frequent but once again, make sure you arrive early as they can get very busy and you can’t always get a seat.
Just like for Orly, you can also go on Le Bus Direct.
The cost is 17 euros one way and 30 euros for a return ticket. It is a private service so you cannot use your navigo pass. It is a bit more money than Roissybus but really worth it if you need to sit down and you have lots of luggage. You pay for the service and the staff on board to help you if you are lost! It’s sometimes really difficult to find someone who can guide you. Free wifi onboard and USB sockets can be really helpful too! It’s the guarantee of a stress-free journey!
There is also a brand new option that does not exist for Orly yet : The EasyBus, run by the same group that does EasyJet budget flights and EasyCar rentals. It leaves from Paris – Palais Royal to CDG taking about 60 minutes. As you can expect, the cost is very low. Starting at 2 euros ! The service used to be only available in Chamonix, Geneva and London. It’s now working in Paris ! Of course in all cases you’ll need to either walk, metro or taxi between the pick-up point and your accommodation but it’s still an incredible value ! Remember though that the earlier you book with easyBus online, the more you can save! Indeed, the cost won’t always be 2 euros. It’s not fixed like Les Cars Air France or Roissybus but if you book in advance then you’ll be more likely to pay just 2 euros. You can also buy tickets from the easyBus driver when boarding at the CDG airport or Paris departure points; though tickets will cost considerably more than booking online in advance. Be careful though on returning to Paris with EasyBus. If your flight is late you can use your reserved ticket up to an hour after your booked time, but the passengers who are on schedule have priority boarding, so you may not get on if you have missed your reserved time.
For more information regarding airports, you can download the app : Paris Aéroport. It is a free app for Roissy-CDG airport, with real-time flight notifications, maps and directions to different terminals, information regarding shopping or where to eat. It’s available in multiple languages. Wifi is free in Paris airports so it’s very easy to use it there.