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Best Tips for Visiting Paris during Transportation Strikes

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12/19/19

Paris Transportation Strikes

After 5+ days of transportation strikes in Paris and France with flight cancellations, reduced train and urban transportation services, it is not clear yet when this industrial action is going to finish.

Should you cancel your trip to Paris? Definitely not! Paris is not at war, and this is not the end of the world. However, some flexibility will be necessary during your stay in Paris, and you need to be ready to review your travel plans.
Below, our best tips to explore Paris (and actually enjoying it) during the strikes:

 

Get Always the Latest News

Strikes Paris

Our posts on upcoming strikes in Paris and France are updated as soon as new information is available. If you are traveling to Paris during transportation strikes, we recommend checking them from time to time and plan your day accordingly:

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Consider Private Transportation for your Transfers Paris – Airport

With only a few RER trains operating and only during 2-3 hours a day, we recommend considering a private /shared transfer Airport – Paris. Avoid the transportation hassle with a door to door service by English speaking drivers.

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Get to Know your Neighborhood

Let us tell you a secret: there’s a lot to see and do in Paris apart from the main sights!

Go out and explore the world around you. We recommend walking the streets around your hotel /apartment to see what your neighborhood has to offer. You can start by reading our Paris Arrondissements Quick Guide and our posts by Arrondissement but this is only the beginning!

You can also ask the hotel staff and other guests, most probably you will get your first tips from them.

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Consider a Day Tour with Hotel Pick up and Drop off

The most popular day tours from Paris are always proposed by all the companies, which means competitive prices and a great service to get better reviews than the competitors. Some tours also come with the hotel pick up /drop off which is perfect when the public transportation in Paris is scarce.
Check out our list of most popular day tours from Paris which come with the best proposals to do them with a guided tour. All these proposed tours always have great reviews. Some examples:

 

Stick to Metro Line 1

Metro of Paris - Line 1

Metro of Paris – Line 1

Line 1 (the yellow line) is an automatic line which means it is running all day. Line 1 is one of the main metro lines in Paris, crossing the city from east to west. Here’s the list of the most interesting things to see and do at a walking distance from line 1:

» The Louvre Museum (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» Saint Germain-l’Auxerrois church, just in front of the Louvre (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» Musée des Arts Décoratifs (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» Seine boat tours (the Batobus, for example, has a stop near the Louvre)

» Tuileries Christmas Market (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» The Tuileries Garden Scavenger Hunt (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» Palais Royal and its beautiful garden (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» Place Vendôme (metro station Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre)

» La Défense Christmas Market (metro station La Défense)

» Shopping at Champs Elysées (metro stations Champs Elysées – Clemenceau to Charles de Gaulle – Étoile)

» Exhibitions at Petit Palais and Grand Palais are always great (station Champs Elysées – Clemenceau)

» Walk around Le Marais (station Saint-Paul or Hôtel de Ville)

» Centre Georges Pompidou (station Hôtel de Ville)

» Château de Vincennes, one of the best castles near Paris (station Château de Vincennes)

» Bois de Vincennes (station Château de Vincennes)

 

TIP:  avoid taking the metro during peak hours, when line 1 gets super crowded /saturated: you definitely don’t need this during your trip to Paris!

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Join a Marais Guided Walking Tour

Medieval Houses - Le Marais

Explore one of the most beautiful corners of Paris on a guided walking tour by a knowledgeable guide. All the tours below start from places located along line 1

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Learn about the French Wines at Les Caves du Louvre

Wine Tasting in Paris

Built in the 18th century by Trudon, the wine steward of King Louis XV, Les Caves du Louvre are now dedicated to French Wine. Through a playful and interactive visit using their free application, discover the vine and enology while stimulating your five senses. The different rooms will make you discover French “terroir”: from vineyards to aromas, flavors, sounds, until of course, the final tasting.

Click here to book your tickets to Les Caves du Louvre

 

Consider Other Means of Transportation for Exploring Other Areas of Paris

The metro doesn’t work? This is not the end of the world! Of course, there are taxi or Uber options but expect big traffic jams during strike days in Paris.

There are other ways to explore Paris, apart from walking, especially if the weather is nice.

Paris by Bike: environmentally friendly, cheap, healthy and surprisingly convenient for navigating perilously congested city streets, the bike is becoming the preferred mode of transportation in Paris. Check our Paris by Bike Quick Guide, with all that you need to know if you want to bike in Paris.

Paris on an electric kick scooter: it’s official: electric kick scooters for adults are a trend in Paris! Today, many Parisians are opting for foldable electric scooters to get to work or simply have fun in the park and the streets. Have a look at the best electric kick scooters for adults, get the one you like, and explore Paris differently.

Sail the Seine on the Batobus: the Batobus is a boat service along the Seine River. It has 9 stops and you can hop on hop off it as many times as you want during the duration of your ticket. The bonus point is that with the Batobus you can avoid traffic jams! The Batobus proposes 3 different passes: 24 hours, 48 hours and annual past. Holders of the Navigo pass or a student car get discounts on these 3 passes.

Click here to buy your Batobus tickets

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Strikes in Paris also Have their Positive Side

Big transportation strikes in Paris also have their positive side, like lesser crowds in museums, shops or restaurants.

This is how one of our friends on France Bucket List lived the first days of the Paris strike:

Saying thanks for all your support, advice and info on the strike. I’d at last found a friend to talk to. Home tomorrow and my train has not been canceled. Yesterday and today were excellent for me. The Boulevard Haussmann and surrounds were peaceful to walk, the museums were quiet, no queues. I’ve spent more time eating locally at night and got to know people instead of rushing down the metro. It’s been different but still superb. 

 

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