Paris Trip Planner: Step-by-Step Guide to Planning a Trip to Paris 2024

How to Plan a Trip to Paris, France

If you’re planning a trip to Paris in 2024, you will want to read this Paris Travel Planner. Paris for first-timers can be overwhelming; there are so many things to see and do! That’s why we want to help with our Paris Trip Planner.

This Paris Trip Planner covers everything you need to know to plan a trip to Paris, including the best time to visit Paris, where to stay, what to do, how to move around, and more.

Do you need help with your Paris trip planning? So let’s get started! Here’s how to plan a trip to Paris, France, you’ll never forget in easy steps that works for any kind of trip — no matter how long you’re going for! Just follow this step-by-step guide, and you’ll be off to Paris in no time!

Paris Travel Planning

Paris Travel Planner 2024 Content:

  1. Best Time to Visit Paris
  2. Booking your Flight or Train Ticket to Paris
  3. Travel Insurance
  4. Where to Stay in Paris
  5. Accommodation in Paris
  6. How to Get from Paris Airport to City
  7. The Cheat Sheet for Your Paris Trip Planner
  8. Paris Itinerary Planner
  9. What to Eat & Drink in Paris
  10. Day Trips from Paris
  11. Planning a Trip to Paris: Know Before You Go

There is no best way to plan a trip to Paris, France, but if you follow this step-by-step Paris Planner, you won’t forget the essentials.

GOOD TO KNOW: If you are planning a honeymoon to Paris or a family trip to Paris, you can complete the reading of this Paris Travel Planner with our specific guides:

1. Best Time to Visit Paris

When is the best time to travel to Paris? Paris is always a good idea,and there is never a bad time to travel to Paris. The city has beautiful parks and picturesque streets that are great to explore under the sun. It also has some of the world’s best museums and other interesting indoor options when it rains, or it’s too cold to be outside.

TIP: In general, the best time to go to Paris is from May to October, and then December for the Christmas Holidays.

If you are flexible with dates, important things to consider when you are planning a Paris trip are the low /high tourist seasons and the weather in Paris. This is what you need to know:

Seasons in Paris

What is the best season to visit Paris? This graphic below represents the weather in Paris year-round, with average temperatures (in Celsius) and average rainfall (%).

Weather in Paris year round, Best Time to Visit Paris - Planning a Trip to Paris

>> Spring is a good time to visit Paris. Spring means blue skies, the gardens in Paris in bloom, and animated café-terraces. The city is also famous for its cherry blossoms (check out our favorite cherry blossom spots in Paris), usually in March and April.

However, temperatures are still fresh (minimums of 4C° to 10C°), with frequent showers. Don’t forget to pack an umbrella and a jacket in your day bag!

Spring Months in Paris

>> Summer in Paris comes with longer days and nice temperatures (maximums of 23C° to 25C°). With a long list of local festivals and events and cool outdoor activities everywhere, no wonder Paris is one of the best summer destinations in Europe!

However, summer is also the high season in Paris, which means more tourists, long lines to visit the main attractions, and higher prices.

>> Fall is, in our opinion, the best season for a first time in Paris. The colors of the trees are gorgeous, temperatures are still pleasant (maximums of 11C° to 21C°), and there are fewer tourists. In the last couple of years, we could organize outdoor activities until mid-November, with bright and sunny days.

>> Winter in Paris is not the best time to visit Paris in terms of weather (minimums of 2C° to 7°C and only 4 to 5 hours of light), and sunset in Paris is very early. However, some people love to travel to Paris at Christmas time to see Paris’s decorations and illuminations and the best Christmas markets in Paris.

Paris is also a popular destination for Saint Valentine’s in February. There are many romantic things to do in Paris!

Tourist Seasons in Paris

>> The high season in Paris is considered from 1st April to 31st October. It means nice weather and more hours of daylight and many people will tell you this is the best time to visit Paris.

But at the same time, the high season in Paris is not the best season to plan a trip to Paris in terms of budget (best accommodation sold out, higher prices). Also, the city is too crowded with tourists – especially in the summer – while locals are somewhere else on holiday.

>> The low season in Paris goes from 1st November to 31st March, except for Paris at Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Paris. This is the cheapest time to travel to Paris and the best time to visit Paris to avoid crowds. If you decide to travel off-season, you will get a more local experience, and it will be easier to find good deals on accommodation, for example.

In the end, Paris is a movable feast and (sun or rain) you will have a great time!

Paris Olympics 2024

Olympic Rings Hotel de Ville - Paris

The Summer Olympics 2024 will be held in Paris and France from Friday, 26 July to Sunday, 11 August 2024. This will be the biggest event ever organized in the country, so expect more visitors than usual (=book everything NOW!).

If you are planning a trip to Paris around these dates, check out our Paris Olympics 2024 Guide so you don’t miss anything on such a historical event.

Best Time to Visit Paris: Our Tips for your Paris Trip Planning

Be flexible with your dates. Flexibility is key, especially if you are planning a trip to Paris on a budget. Flight tickets or train tickets to Paris will be more expensive:

  • During the school holidays in France;
  • During holidays in France or Europe;
  • Weekend trips (Friday to Sunday);
  • During special events like New Year’s Eve or Saint Valentine’s Day.

If you are a museum lover visiting Paris for the first time, the best time to go to Paris will probably be the first weekend of the month when you can visit many museums in Paris for free. Some of these museums have this offer all year round, while other museums are only free during the winter months.

2. Booking your Flight or Train Ticket to Paris

train station in Paris

Flight Tickets to Paris

Paris has three airports: Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG), north of Paris; Paris Orly (ORY), south of Paris; and Paris-Beauvais (BVA). Despite its name, Paris Beauvais is not in Paris but in the city of Beauvais (80 km north of Paris, in the Hauts-de-France region).

If you are traveling to Paris from somewhere overseas, you will probably land at Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG). Paris Orly Airport (ORY) is used mainly for flights to /from Europe and North Africa, while Paris-Beauvais Airport (BVA) is mainly for Ryan Air flights.

Charles de Gaulle Airport and Orly Airport are more or less at the same distance from Paris, so if you are traveling from Europe, you can choose whatever flight (or flight company) you like. We don’t like Orly Airport (ORY) that much, so we always try to book flights from /to Paris Charles de Gaulle. But this is just our opinion.

Lately, we like to book our flights with Omio, a search engine for all major forms of transport that is very easy to use! It has different filters – time, number of scales, departure time – so the research and booking process is straightforward – Click here to buy your flight tickets to Paris with Omio

Train Tickets to Paris

If you live in Europe, high-speed trains are a good and definitely a more eco-friendly option for your trip to Paris. Here are some of the main European destinations served from the stations in Paris.

  • Gare du Nord: London (Eurostar), Brussels, Cologne, and Amsterdam (Thalys)
  • Gare de l’Est: Germany, and Luxembourg
  • Gare de Lyon: Switzerland (Geneva, Zurich), Italy, and Catalunya (Girona, Barcelona)
  • Gare d’Austerlitz: Western Spain.

We like and recommend Omio to book train tickets from /to Paris. The website is straightforward to use, it is written in English, and it proposes interesting promotions from time to time – Click here to buy your train tickets to Paris with Omio

Our readers from the UK and Australia, however, prefer Trainline, probably because it has its headquarters in the UK. Trainline is also in English and works more or less like Omio.

So there’s the Omio team and the Trainline team, but you should always find the same information and ticket prices in both sites.

3. Don’t Skimp on Travel Insurance

Don’t skimp on Travel Insurance when you plan your trip to Paris 2024. Since anything can happen while traveling, the best thing you can do for yourself is to be insured.

Before going through other aspects of your Paris planning, ensure you are completely covered before traveling to minimize the financial risks of theft, loss of luggage, or flight cancellation.

SafetyWing has super affordable plans for budget travelers for long and short trips. While marketed as “Nomad Insurance,” you can get it for as little as five days. You can sign up for SafetyWing insurance even if your journey has already started! – Click here to get a quote for your next trip to Paris.

HeyMondo is another option for your Paris trip. It offers travelers insurance that combines medical and travel-related coverage for single trips (leisure and business trips), annual multi-trip, and extended stays (with COVID-19 coverage included). Use this link to get a 5% off.

You can also compare plans, prices, and coverage with Travel Insurance Master, a comparison site that will find the perfect fit for you amongst the world’s leading programs. Travel Insurance Master is also the best place to look for senior travelers.

Schengen Area Travel Insurance

For those who require a visa to enter France or any other Schengen country, travel insurance covering repatriation and medical expenses is compulsory. The necessary visa to enter Europe will not be issued unless you provide proof of suitable coverage Buy your travel insurance with HeyMondo

4. Where to Stay in Paris

Planning a trip to Paris for the first time can be challenging, especially when it comes to deciding which area you want to stay in Paris.

Paris is divided into 20 arrondissements (=districts of Paris), which are also administrative divisions. In each Paris Arrondissement, there is a town hall (Mairie), a mayor and elected officials, a council, a politician, and so on. Of course, each division is still subject to the city’s overall policy and the mayor of Paris, the socialist Anne Hidalgo.

To find your bearings in Paris, there is a little trick: the 1st Paris arrondissement is in the center of Paris, then the other Paris arrondissements are located forming a spiral turning clockwise, to finish in the 20th in the east. Check out our Districts of Paris Guide to learn more about the Arrondissements of Paris.

Map of Paris by Arrondissement

Where to stay in Paris? The best area to stay in Paris very much depends on the sort of trip you’re planning. Check our suggestions below for sightseeing, luxury, family, and first-time trips to Paris.

So you got your train or flight tickets for your Paris trip, and the countdown starts! In the previous chapter, you have more or less decided where to stay in Paris (the Arrondissement of Paris). The next step of your Paris travel plan is to book accommodation in Paris.

Hotels and Hostels in Paris

Hotels can be so much more than a simple place to rest your head, and a city like Paris cannot disappoint in terms of accommodation: your Paris hotel can be just as memorable as your sightseeing!

When it comes to booking your bed in Paris, the best site to search and compare different accommodation options in Europe is Booking.com because you have everything from hostels to luxury hotels. What we have found quite regularly on Booking.com is that you can get a room in a small hotel for the same price as a hostel. Research makes all the difference!

Click here to book your hotel with Booking.com

>> For a top Paris experience, stay in a hotel with views of the Eiffel Tower or, even better, in one of the fabulous historic hotels of Paris. All these hotels are gorgeous and the beginning of a five-star Parisian experience!

>> Truth be told, these historic hotels are not for all the pockets. But there are many unique themed hotels in Paris that certainly know how to give their guests a memorable and colorful stay for less money. If you plan a trip to Paris in the summer, consider one of the Paris hotels with a pool for the warmest days.

>> For those people traveling on a budget, we hand-picked the best hostels in Paris (with dorms but also private rooms). You will be surprised at how cute our proposals are, but in a city like Paris, it could not be otherwise!

Check out these lists of best hotels in the most popular neighborhoods in Paris:

Furnished Apartments in Paris

For a much more local experience, consider renting an apartment in Paris. This is definitely a much more local option than a hotel or a hostel, plus you can even cook some of your meals to save money. And there are some apartments with Eiffel Tower views too!

If you decide to rent an apartment in Paris, we recommend Booking.com, which also does apartment rentals for travelers with excellent service. With Booking.com, you can have all your hotel and apartment bookings under the same dashboard, plus their customer service is excellent Find the Best Apartments in Paris with Booking.com

GOOD TO KNOW: Furnished apartments are very requested in Paris, especially in tourist areas. For this reason, apartment owners prioritize bookings for longer stays rather than just a weekend.

Accommodation in Paris: Our Tips for your Paris Trip Planning

>> Book in advance for more options and better prices.

>> Avoid Famous Places in Paris if you are traveling on a budget.

>> Consider one of the best hotels near Gare du Nord for late arrivals or early departures from this train station. They are good, safe, and cheaper than in the most popular neighborhoods.

>> Check out our Hotel Recommendations in our articles by Paris Arrondissement.

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6. How to Get from Paris Airport to the City

Transportation to Paris City

If you don’t live in Europe, you will probably fly to Paris. There are currently 153 air companies flying to Paris so that you can fly to the City of Light from anywhere in the world!

There are two airports near Paris: Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) and Orly Airport (ORY). You have different options to get to Paris, depending on which airport you land at.

Best Transportation Options from Paris Airports to City

OPTION
TO
DURATION
PRICE
HOURS
Train Paris CDG Airport
Gare du Nord or Châtelet
30-40 min
11,45€
4:50 am – 11:50 pm
Your hotel
30-40 min
60€ approx
24/7
Taxi CDG Airport
Your hotel
30-40 min
Flat rate: 62€ to Left Bank /55€ to Right Bank (without pre-booking)
24/7
Roissy Bus (CDG Airport-Opéra)
11 Rue Scribe (Paris 9)
60-75 min
16.50€
6:00 am – 0:30 am
Orly Bus Paris ORY Airport
Denfert- Rochereau
30-40 min
11.20€
6:am – 0:30 am
Your hotel
30-40 min
50€ approx
24/7
Taxi ORY Airport
Your hotel
30-40 min
Flat rate: 35€ to Left Bank /41€ to Right Bank (without pre-booking)
24/7

Our personal recommendation is to pre-book with Welcome Pickups, a reliable and top-rated private transfer service. Your driver will wait for you outside of the arrivals hall with a sign bearing your name, plus a bottle of water and a map of the city. Welcome Pickups have introduced strict safety protocols to protect drivers and guests.

7. The Cheat Sheet for Your Paris Trip Planner

Seine River in Paris

The next step of your Paris plan is to decide what to see and do. If this is your first trip to Paris, the lists below cover the main attractions and the most iconic things to do in Paris.

>> 50 Iconic Things to Do in Paris

>> Paris Checklist

>> Best Rooftop Bars in Paris

>> Best Cabarets in Paris

>> Top Things to Do in Paris at Night

>> Most Beautiful Covered Passages of Paris

>> Best Seine River Cruises in Paris

>> Famous Buildings in Paris

>> Famous Paris Landmarks

TIP: Check out the best Paris combo tickets, good combinations of 2-3 Paris tickets & tours that make you save time and money!

8. Paris Itinerary Planner

Berges de la Seine - Paris

If you are planning a trip to Paris for the first time and need some inspiration for your Paris travel plan, these Paris itineraries for one day to a week will be helpful.

>> One Day in Paris Itinerary

>> Two Days in Paris Itinerary

>> Three Days in Paris Itinerary

>> Four Days in Paris Itinerary

>> Five Days in Paris Itinerary

>> Six Days in Paris Itinerary

>> One Week in Paris Itinerary

Layover in Paris

If your vacation includes a layover in Paris, it is possible to get a glimpse of what the city offers before your next flight.

If your top priority is to see the Eiffel Tower, it is possible to have a quick ride from the airport to the city center to check it out from your bucket list. Head here for the best ways to go to the Eiffel Tower from Charles de Gaulle Airport, or check out this article for the best ways to go from Orly Airport to the Eiffel Tower.

With a long layover in Paris, you can consider a short itinerary to see some of Paris’ main sites. Check out how to spend a layover in Paris, with some proposals for short itineraries and our best tips.

TIP: This Paris layover tour from the airport always gets the best ratings!  

When you travel to Paris, be sure to learn about French food in Paris and the best things to eat in Paris. If you’re not trying the food, you are far away from getting to know the culture. We have hand-picked our best food articles for this Paris Trip Planner 2024.

>> Paris Food Guide

>> Where to Eat in Paris

>> French Wine Regions near Paris

>> Famous Foods to Try  in Paris

>> Best Bistros in Paris

>> Best Cheap Eats in Paris

>> Best Parisian Cakes (born and perfectioned in Paris!)

>> Best Desserts in Paris

If you are looking for restaurant recommendations, this blog also lists the best restaurants in Paris by district.

10. Day Trips from Paris

If you have an extra day or two, don’t hesitate to go beyond Paris. Check out the ultimate list of best day trips from Paris, featuring historic cities, seaside towns, world heritage wonders, and adventures in the great French countryside.

Versailles is the most popular day trip from Paris. Home to the Kings of France between 1662 and 1789, the Palace of Versailles is one of the most important landmarks in French history, also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage. The Gardens of Versailles are beautiful to see too! Check out our Versailles Quick Guide to get the most out of this wonderful place.

Disneyland Paris is a must for families visiting the French capital. Check out how to get from Paris to Disneyland Paris and this Disneyland Paris crowd calendar for the quietest days in Mickeyland!

For a more local feeling, there are many picturesque small towns near Paris very easy to reach by train.

11. Planning a Trip to Paris: Know Before You Go

Best way to see the Louvre

Check out our Paris insider tips for your first time in Paris.

>> Most of the hotels and hostels in Paris offer free Wi-Fi for their guests. You can also get a prepaid SIM card for your trip, which will allow you to communicate with other numbers in France and keep you connected to the internet all the time. Here are the best prepaid SIM cards for France (and how to get them).

>> Paris is one of the most visited cities on this planet. In 2018, 17.95 million international overnight tourists visited the city mainly for sightseeing and shopping. Read how to avoid the longest lines in Paris’ main attractions.

>> The Parisian Metro is nearly 115 years old, the second oldest metro after London’s tube system! The metro now serves 6 million out of 10.5 million people in Paris. Learn how to navigate the Parisian metro with our Paris Metro Guide.

>> Arguably the most famous museum in the world, the Louvre Museum is also the biggest! Indeed, it would take 100 days to see all of the art in the Louvre Museum. Learn how to get the most out of the Louvre in 2 hours or less.

>> The Parisian style is simple, chic, and beautiful. Parisian’s motto is ‘Less is More,’ with a minimum of versatile and easy-to-combine items. If your Paris planning includes making the perfect packing list, check out our suggestions for men and women on what to pack and what to wear in Paris to blend in with the local crowd.

>> One week before leaving for Paris, check out this post about the Paris strikes 2024. Just in case…

Consider a Paris Tourist Pass

Lines to visit the main Paris tourist attractions are guaranteed. Long lines. If you are planning a Paris trip and you want to visit most of its famous sights, you may want to consider a Paris Tourist Pass for you Paris trip plan.

The Paris Museum Pass offers visitors direct access to 55 of Paris’s top attractions and museums in Paris. The Paris Museum Pass is available for 2, 4, or 6 consecutive days. If your schedule in Paris is tight and you don’t want to spend your time waiting in line, the Paris Museum Pass is for you.

There are other interesting tourist passes for visiting Paris; check out our Paris Pass Comparison for the full list.

So there you have it, how to plan a Paris trip 2024 you’ll never forget. Go on reading this Paris travel blog 2024 for more information and the history and culture in Paris.

Click here to read more Paris Tips

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Quirky Parisian explorer with a preference for lesser-known sights, I am continuously looking for new ideas and tips to bring you the best of the City of Light! Read more about me.