Table of Contents
- Transportation Strikes in France
- 1- Calendar France Strikes and Paris Strikes 2019 – 2020
- 2- Transport Strikes in France 2019 – 2020: Services Affected
- 3- What you Need to Know about the Train Connections Paris Airport – City
- 4- Tips for Getting Around during French Train Strike Dates 2019
- 5- Tips for Traveling to Paris during French Air Traffic Control Strike Dates & French Air Strikes 2019 – 2020
- 6- Tips for Traveling to Paris during an Air France Strike 2019 – 2020
- 7- How to Get from Paris Airport to City during a Transportation Strike in Paris
- 8- Paris Public Transportation during Strikes in Paris
- 9- Gilets Jaunes in Paris
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Transportation Strikes in France
Last update: November 12, 2019
Transportation in France and in Paris is usually quite good but unfortunately, sometimes it is affected by strikes.
However, we locals have learned over time to deal with French strikes. How? With the right information, a little bit of flexibility in our everyday life and lots of patience. For example, if there’s a strike in Paris today, some people living on the outskirts of Paris may decide to take a day off at work or to work online from the house to avoid the transportation hassle.
Planning a trip to Paris soon? Go on reading this article on Transportation Strikes in France 2019 – 2020, with the upcoming strikes in Paris and France and our best tips for getting around Paris.
Content of this Article
» Paris Metro Strikes and other RATP services (RER, tramway..) – Paris and Parisian Region
» Air France strikes – all France
» Other French flight companies strikes – all France
» French air traffic control strikes – all France
» Taxi strikes – Paris and Parisian Region
» SNCF strikes – all France
» Other train strikes in France – all France
This article on Transportation strikes in Paris and France contains lots of information and updates. We have written other articles on specific transportation strikes in France:
French Strike Updates
The strikes shown in this article are the French strikes planned and the dates are officially confirmed. Unfortunately, some France strikes are confirmed only 24 hrs in advance, when negotiations have failed.
If you are traveling to Paris soon, we recommend having a quick look at this post a few days before your trip and then the day before your departure to check if there is any update.
A nice introduction to Paris (despite the Paris strikes)
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1- Calendar France Strikes and Paris Strikes 2019 – 2020
Are there any strikes in France today? /Are there Paris strikes this week?
Following the SNCF strikes and RATP strikes of September 2019, additional French strikes are announced for the second half of the year, with new transportation strikes planned for October and December 2019.
Strikes in Paris & Strikes in France 2019 – 2020
» Planned French air traffic control strike dates 2019 – 2020: – –
» Planned French airstrike dates 2019-2020: February 3, 2020
» Planned Air France strike dates 2019-2020: December 5, February 3, 2020?
» Planned French train strike dates 2019: November 8, and unlimited strike starting on December 5
» Planned taxi strike Paris dates 2019: – –
» Planned Paris metro strike dates 2019: unlimited strike starting on December 5
What does “unlimited strike” mean in this context? It means that nobody knows when people could use this transport again. Probably there will be no transportation for a few days.
Remember that other strike days may follow in the coming days. Also, some strikes may be canceled if there’s an agreement with the government.
Paris and France Strikes in November 2019
» Atlantic TGVs strike (SNCF) from October 24 to ?. A strike by the SNCF agents at the Chatillon maintenance center will disrupt the circulation of the TGV Atlantique trains. This strike started on October 24, 2019 and it is extended day after day without a clear finish date.
UPDATE: work resumed normally on November 4, 2019. However, there are still disruptions for the coming days, with 9 out of 10 trains running.
» TGVs strike (SNCF) in the East of France on November 8, 2019. A strike by the SNCF – TGV train controllers in the East of France will disrupt the circulation of the TGV trains in this part of France. TGV train controllers protest against some schedule changes.
Paris and France Strikes in December 2019
» Unlimited RATP strike starting on December 5, 2019. After a Friday (September 13) without the Parisian metro, five RATP unions are calling for an unlimited movement starting on December 5 to protest the pension reform. This is a local strike, concerning Paris and the Parisian Region, and has no end date.
We have read on different French websites the following quote by the general secretary of the UNSA-RATP, Laurent Djebali:
starting on December 5, it will be zero metro, zero RER trains and a few buses
This threat seems very serious to us, especially during the first days of the 5th December strike. This would not be the first time that the country’s transportation infrastructure is paralyzed, a similar movement happened in 1995.
Also, it seems that this RATP strike could be extended to 2020. RATP is already looking for partnerships with bike companies, electric kick-scooter companies, and taxi services to mitigate the impact of this zero-service RATP strike.
» Unlimited SNCF trains strike starting on December 5, 2019. After September 24, the SUD Rail union is calling for an unlimited movement starting on December 5 to protest the pension reform. This is a national SNCF strike that concerns all France and like the RATP strike has no end date.
UPDATE: the CGT Cheminots and UNSA Ferroviaire trade unions also call for strike
» Renewable strike action by Air France ground crew from December 5th, 2019. New!
The first union of the ground staff of the French national company, Force Ouvrière announced November 6 2019, its intention to join the national movement, to force the government to withdraw its project.
» Citura buses and trams strike in Reims from December 5th to December 6th, 2019 New!
Paris and France Strikes in February 2020 New!
» National Strike in France by air pilots, doctors, and lawyers on February 3, 2020. This strike concerns all the French territory.
2- Transport Strikes in France 2019 – 2020: Services Affected
France & Paris Strikes November 2019
» Atlantic TGVs strike (SNCF) from October 24 to October 28, 2019. The TGV Atlantique trains connect Paris to the main cities of the West of France: Bordeaux, Nantes, Rennes, etc. Services that will be affected:
- Atlantic TGVs. Regions affected: Bretagne, Centre Val de Loire, Nouvelle Aquitaine, Occitanie, Pays de la Loire.
The impact on the services is usually announced 48-24 hours beforehand. During the first day of the strike, 6 /10 trains were running.
Read our tips for getting around Paris and France during train strikes in chapter #4
» TGVs strike (SNCF) in the East of France on November 8, 2019. These TGV trains connect Paris to the main cities in the East of France. Services affected:
- 6 trains out of 10 on the axis Paris – Reims, Paris – Metz – Thionville – Luxembourg
- 7 trains out of 10 on the axis Paris – Nancy, Paris – Alsace
France & Paris Strikes December 2019
» Unlimted RATP Strike starting on December 5, 2019. Today, RATP is still responsible for most of the public transport in Paris, and in the Parisian region. RATP includes the Paris Métro, tram and bus services and part of the Réseau Express Régional (RER) network.
UPDATE: here’s the list of lines affected by this strike. Disruptions on these lines will start on December 4 at 10 pm:
- Metro lines 2, 3, 3 bis, 4, 5, 6, 7, 7 bis, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 et 13. It seems that only the automatic lines (line 1 and line 4 will work more or less)
- RER A et B. This includes the trains from Paris Airports to city
- tramway T1, T2, T3a, T3b, T5, T6, T7, T8.
- some buses and the region’s night service bus
» Unlimited SNCF trains strike starting on December 5, 2019. Today, SNCF is still responsible for most of the train transport in France.
The impact on the specific trains is usually announced 48-24 hours beforehand. Services affected:
- Main TGV lines in all the French regions
- Main TER lines in all the French regions
- Regional trains in all the French regions
Read our tips for getting around Paris and France during train strikes in chapter #4
» Air France ground crew renewable strike from December 5, 2019. New!
This is a piece of new information and we still don’t know the details and how Air-France operations will be affected. We’ll be adding more details when they are announced, so keep checking back!
France & Paris Strikes February 2020
» National Strike in France by air pilots, doctors, and lawyers on February 3, 2020. This strike concerns all the French territory. Expect flight disruptions in flights operated by French airlines. If Air France air pilots follow this strike, Air France’s flight schedule will be also affected.
The impact on the services is usually announced 48-24 hours beforehand. Services usually affected:
- Domestic flights in France
- International flights from /to France
3- What you Need to Know about the Train Connections Paris Airport – City
The line from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to Paris city center is operated half by SNCF trains (from CDG Airport to Paris Gare du Nord) and half by RATP trains (from Paris Gare du Nord to the end of the line). This means that when a train arrives at Gare du Nord train station, there’s a change of train drivers: the SNCF train driver goes off the train and the RATP train driver goes on the train (or vice-versa).
If SNCF trains or RATP trains are on strike, expect disruptions in this interconnection. During the last transportation strikes of September 2019, for example, this interconnection was suspended.
» The line from Paris Orly Airport to Paris city center is operated by RATP trains. During RATP strikes it is frequent that this service is affected – fewer trains or service suspended.
» Both airport shuttle bus lines OrlyBus and RoissyBus are operated by RATP. During RATP strikes it is frequent that these two services are affected.
TIP: During strike days consider the transfer services of Welcome for private transportations from airport to city. Welcome pick-ups have good cars and the best English speaking drivers in Paris.
Alternatively, book a shared transportation service with Viator. This option only costs 6€ more than the Airport-Paris ticket and avoids you all the strikes hassle.
IMPORTANT: We recommend booking these services in advance, especially during the Christmas holidays. Christmas in Paris and the last days of the year are peak season in Paris, with many people traveling.
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4- Tips for Getting Around during French Train Strike Dates 2019
Unfortunately, French train strikes are not uncommon in our country. This is how to proceed during SNCF strikes for national and international train trips.
READ MORE: France by Train Quick Guide
You have not booked your train tickets yet
Paris is always a good idea but it is even a better idea if there are no train strikes around.
Be Flexible with your travel dates. If you were thinking about visiting Paris (or France) but you have not booked yet, avoid traveling to Paris during French train strike dates.
Actually, the SNCF website usually does not allow any more bookings during French train strike dates.
Consider Other Options, like traveling to Paris or France by plane or with your own car.
You have booked your train tickets to/from Paris
If you have booked your train during French train strike dates please don’t panic!
First of all, check on the SNCF website the France train strike schedule, if your train is canceled or not. To do this click on “Train Number”, enter your train number (you can find this information on your train ticket) and then add your travel date. The system will tell you immediately the status of your train.
» If your train is not canceled don’t worry! Perhaps there will be some disruptions or delays but you should be ok.
» If your train is canceled, SNCF proposes different solutions:
- You can exchange your train ticket at no extra cost. Just follow the instructions on the page and, very important, verify before the last click that you don’t have to pay anything.
- You can cancel your trip and get a refund. If for any reason your ticket is stated as “non-refundable” or the website does not propose you a total refund (please verify this before the last click), contact them directly with your ticket reference number.
- If you booked your train with Ouigo trains, contact them directly for an exchange or refund.
If your train is canceled and you are stuck during your trip around France, consider the rental of a car.
5- Tips for Traveling to Paris during French Air Traffic Control Strike Dates & French Air Strikes 2019 – 2020
French Air Strikes 2019 – 2020
By French Air Strikes we mean strikes by French air companies or by pilots of French air companies flying from /to France.
Each flight company manages airstrikes differently but the process to follow in case of strikes is always the same: visit its website, check if your flight is affected and if so, follow their instructions for a change or refund.
French Air Traffic Control Strikes 2019 – 2020
France is the country with the highest number of air traffic controller strikes in the last five years, with 95 days of strike between 2010 and 2015.
These are the worst transportation strikes in France, with hundreds of flights from /to France delayed or canceled. Also, other companies that do not have direct flights to and from France can be affected because of rerouting.
In other words: French Air Traffic Control Strikes mean chaos!
What to do during French Air Traffic Control Strikes? We recommend following the France strike news, monitor your flight on the air company’s website and consider their proposed options to change /refund your tickets.
6- Tips for Traveling to Paris during an Air France Strike 2019 – 2020
GOOD TO KNOW: Many Air France flights operate on share code with other air companies (HOP!, KLM, Delta…). Air France flights operated by an aircraft and a crew other than that of Air France or Joon might not be affected by this Air France strike.
On the other hand, if one of these other companies (HOP!, KLM, Delta…) is operating on share code with Air France and they are using Air France crew or Air France aircraft, these flights could be impacted. We recommend checking their specific websites and, if your flight is affected, see what re-booking options they offer.
You have not booked your flight to Paris with Air France yet
» Be Flexible with your travel dates. If you were thinking about flying to Paris with Air France but you did not book your flights yet, avoid traveling to Paris during Air France strike dates.
» Consider other air companies to avoid eventual delays or cancellations.
You have booked your flight to Paris with Air France already
First of all, take your e-ticket and check your flight status here to see if your flight is affected by the Air France strike or not. To do this, introduce your flight number and your travel date. The system will tell you immediately if your flight is delayed or canceled.
During Air France strikes you can anticipate, postpone and cancel your trip easily online. With Air France, you can even change your origin or destination and if you decide to do this, you will get a voucher valid for 1 year that can be used on AIR FRANCE, KLM or HOP! flights. Check all the possible options during Air France strikes here.
7- How to Get from Paris Airport to City during a Transportation Strike in Paris
Allow Extra Time when traveling from Paris city to Airport
During transportation strikes in France, there will be fewer trains and buses running. Also, the train interconnection at Gare du Nord might be suspended.
In any case, expect the working trains or buses to be crampet to the point to let them go and wait for the next one.
Check RER B’s schedule and the specific bus line schedules before leaving your hotel and allow extra time to reach the airport.
TIP: Find all the transportation options in our Paris – Airport Transportation Guides:
Book an airport transfer and avoid the strikes hassle. The last thing you want to do after a long flight is to fight for getting a bus or a train to Paris, especially if you are traveling with kids, seniors or a lot of luggage.
The good thing about Paris airport transfers is that their service is not affected by the Paris strikes. Whatever happens during a transportation strike in Paris, your driver will be there waiting for you.
TIP: We like Welcome ‘s transfer services for private transfers, Welcome has good cars and the best English speaking drivers in Paris.
If you were considering the purchase of a Paris Tourist Pass, have a look at the Paris City Pass.
The Paris City Pass is like a magic wand for Paris. Apart from the skip-the-line tickets to the Louvre Museum and Montparnasse Tower, the pass comes with a FREE airport transfer from Charles de Gaulle or Orly to the city center, plus a 3-day valid Metro card.
Finally, the Paris City Pass includes a Seine River cruise and a 20% discount on Paris top tourist attractions.
Flying Early in the morning? Consider a Hotel Near the Airport with Shuttle Service
If your flight is leaving Paris early in the morning, have a look at the hotels near your Paris airport, at least for the last night.
Sleeping in hotels near the airport eliminates the stress of having to wake up early in the morning and the transportation hassle during a strike day in Paris.
Another advantage of hotels close to Paris airports is that they usually propose very competitive prices because most tourists opt for a hotel located in the city.
Finally, most of these hotels also provide a free airport pickup /drop-off if you book it in advance.
Here’s the list of our favorite hotels near Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport and Paris Orly Airport. All these hotels come with airport shuttle service:
This is the only hotel located inside Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (Terminal 2) which means you are within walking distance of your boarding gate. Despite its proximity to the airport, the rooms are very quiet and come with all the comfort and facilities of a Sheraton hotel.
From all the hotels close to Charles de Gaulle Airport, Oceania Paris Roissy Cdg Airport is one of our favorites. The hotel, with a 24-hour service desk and FREE Wi-fi, is really beautiful and it features a fantastic spa, perfect for a moment of relaxation before or after a long flight. This hotel is located at 1.5km from Terminal 1 and it proposes an airport shuttle at no extra charge.
This 4-star hotel is a great value for money and a good option for your last night before taking your flight at Orly Airport, or for your full stay. Novotel Paris Orly Rungis has great facilities including a fitness room, an outdoor swimming pool, and a beautiful terrace. Rooms are spacious and modern and they all come with a bathroom with shower or bathtub. The hotel proposes a free shuttle from Orly Airport to the hotel.
This 4-star hotel is conveniently located at only 5 minutes shuttle ride from Orly Airport. The hotel, with a 24-hour service desk and FREE Wi-fi, is comfortable, with spacious rooms, different shared areas to hang around and business facilities. The hotel proposes an airport shuttle at no extra charge.
8- Paris Public Transportation during Strikes in Paris
When RATP goes on strike, all the public transportation in Paris is affected. This includes the metro of Paris but also RER trains, tram and bus lines. Here are our best tips for getting around the city during strikes in Paris.
Paris Metro Strikes: Be Flexible
If you are traveling around Paris during Paris Metro strikes, be flexible AND patient.
During a Paris Metro strike, there will be fewer trains running so the waiting time between trains will be longer and the metro platforms will be more crowded.
Usually, a Paris Metro strike was not that painful, as long as people avoided the Paris Metro rush hour. However, last September 2019 some metro lines were totally closed and the few working lines offered very poor service. As an example, we live close to line 11 and line 7bis and none of them were operating during September 13, we had no public transportation running close to where we live!
RATP Strikes: Consider Other Options
If you are staying in the central arrondissements of Paris and the weather is good, you can also consider other alternatives to the metro, tram or buses. These alternatives include Paris by bike, walking (walking is great in Paris!), or electric kick scooters for adults.
If you were considering a day trip from Paris during a transportation strike, a guided day tour may be the best way to go. The most popular day trips from Paris are covered by all the tour companies in the city so prices are usually very competitive.
9- Gilets Jaunes in Paris
UPDATE: Gilets Jaunes demonstrations are over (until next time . . .)
Gilets Jaunes demonstrations usually take place on Saturdays, in central places like Concorde, or Champs Elysées, but also on the outskirts of Paris.
There are no transportation strikes in France or in Paris directly linked to Gilets Jaunes but some streets of Paris or roads around Paris might be blocked to transit because of the Gilets Jaunes.
What does it mean?
» It means that the Paris bus services and especially the bus services to the airport might be disrupted and the itinerary slightly modified to avoid the blocked streets or roads.
» It means that some central metro stations in Paris (e.g. Concorde, Champs Elysées) might be closed during these demonstrations in Paris.
TIP: Allow more time for your travels inside Paris but especially on the way to the airport
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Some interesting articles in the blog
- Read why Paris is always a good idea here
- Explore Paris by Arrondissement here
- Check what to eat in Paris here