Metro, RER, tramway, bus... The Paris public transport network serves the city and the suburbs.
As an expatriate relocating to Paris you may be interested in understanding the public transport system in Paris and Ile de France.
The metro is the easiest, fastest and most economical way to get around Paris. The network consists of 16 lines and nearly 300 stations, whose entrance is marked with a large yellow letter "M".
The metro service starts every day - including public holidays - at around 6am and ends at around 0:45am (Sunday to Thursday) or 1:45am (Friday and Saturday).
Where to Buy your Metro Ticket?
Metro tickets cost €1.90 per unit or €14.50 for a booklet of 10 (January 2020) and are available for purchase at vending machines located in stations and corner shops (“Tabac”). If you use public transports on a regular basis, it is better to pay for a monthly fare with the Navigo card.
New Navigo Easy Pass
Easy to use and practical, the Navigo Easy pass allows you to load several transport tickets (individual metro ticket, full or reduced fare ticket booklet, Navigo day pass, OrlyBus and RoissyBus tickets) on a single support. It costs €2; you first buy it at a desk in a station and it can be refilled at sales machines or at ticket offices in all stations in the Île-de-France region. Non-nominative, Navigo Easy can thus be lent or transferred to any other person. During a trip, each traveller must have and have validated his or her pass: several people cannot therefore travel simultaneously with the same pass.
The Navigo Easy pass is intended primarily for occasional travellers and tourists who will be able to travel more easily on the Île-de-France transport network with modern support.
Good to Know for Expatriates Relocating to Paris and Ile de France
- Each metro line has a distinctive colour that can be found on RATP's signage and plans.
- The directions of the lines are indicated by the first and last stations on the platforms and maps (example: Porte de Clignancourt - Mairie de Montrouge).
- Free metro maps are available at the station counters.
- Metro tickets are valid in fare zone 1 and 2 only.
See the map of metros, RER and tramways in Paris:
The RER (Regional Express Network)
The RER network includes 5 lines serving Paris and its region (Ile-de-France). Each line has a distinctive colour that can be found on the signage and plans of RATP and SNCF.
The RER service starts every day - including public holidays - at around 6am and ends at around 0:45am.
For the RER, the tickets and fares are the same as those of the metro, if you only travel within Paris. Beyond that, you must have a ticket or pass, the price of which covers the journey to your destination in the Ile-de-France region. If your RER station is connected to the metro, you can connect with the same ticket.
See the map of RER and Transilien trains in Paris ratp.fr/en/plans-lignes/plan-rer-et-transiliens
Expatriates living in the Paris suburbs during their relocation to France may be interested in the Transilien.
Transiliens are regional trains departing from the main Parisian stations (Nord, Est, Lyon, Austerlitz, Montparnasse, Saint-Lazare). Tickets and passes are available at "Ile-de-France" ticket offices and ATMs in stations, as well as in metro/RER stations. Free leaflets with timetables are available at the station counters. Suburban lines complement the RER network, with which they share many connections.
The Tramway in Paris
Paris has 4 tramway lines that serve the outskirts of the city: T1, T2, T3, T4.
Tram tickets are the same as those for the metro and RER in Paris.
The Bus in Paris
The bus is one of the best and most authentic ways to discover Paris in the beginning of a relocation to France. There are many lines many of which crossing through the centre, along the banks of the Seine, through the historic districts...
Buses run from Monday to Saturday from 7am to 8.30pm. Some lines are in operation in the evening between 8.30 p.m. and 12.30 a.m., especially those that leave stations or serve major metro/RER interchange hubs, as well as the 3 peripheral PC lines. Almost half of the lines operate on Sundays and public holidays.
The line number and direction are indicated at the front, above the driver's cab, and on the sides of the bus. Signal the driver to ask for the bus stop. At bus stops, electronic panels show you the waiting time before the next bus.
Please feel free to contact your destination services consultant from your relocation agency Management Mobility Consulting for any questions related to the public transport system in Paris and Ile de France.