Planning a trip to Paris? It’s not a bad idea to book as many things as you can online before you go – you don’t have to carry the cash or come back to the bills and you can often collect the tickets / passes when you arrive. One of the things worth thinking about is the Paris Pass, or if you enjoy walking and all the places you want to visit are close by, a Museum Pass is really good value.
The Paris Pass, available for 2, 4 or 6 days, is the most expensive, but it includes the Paris Museum Pass (also available separately for 2, 4 or 6 days) which will give you free entrance to over 60 of Paris’ world famous museums and monuments. You may visit each museum more than once and most allow you express entry. This is specially useful when you want to visit one of the most popular museums or attractions such as the Louvre, which can have long queues, even in the ‘non-peak’ seasons.
One that doesn’t give you express entry is the Notre Dame Tower. This is because they can only allow about 20 people up in each group and you wait for earlier groups to move on before climbing again. The first stop of about 5 minutes is in ‘The shop!’, where non-ticket holders get their tickets. This climb is definitely not suitable or available for small children, strollers or people in wheelchairs.
Also included in the Paris Pass is the Paris Attractions Pass which gives you free entry to popular attractions including a Seine River Cruise, the Musée Grévin, Tour Montparnasse and even a Wine Tasting experience! These attractions can be accessed only once each during the time available.
Show your Paris Attractions Pass to collect a 1 day unlimited use ticket for the Paris Bus Tour. This free Hop-on-hop-off bus tour of Paris with Les Cars Rouge will save you time so use it on a day when you want to visit the places along the route.
For free unlimited travel on the Paris Metro, buses and RER trains within central Paris (zones 1-3), the Paris Pass includes a Paris Visite Travelcard.
Tip! – You can also purchase books of 10 tickets which can also be used within the system, if you think you will not need the trains a lot. Validate your ticket as you enter the system and as long as you don’t actually go out, you can change between trains and systems as the connections are quite efficient. Not many escalators, lots of steps!
Apart from the previously mentioned Fast Track Entry which lets you skip the lines at selected museums and attractions, you will also receive a 120+ page Guidebook which will help you plan your visits and travelling about and you will also receive exclusive offers at selected shops and restaurants in central Paris.
Making the most of your Pass
The day is not a 24 hour day, so if you use if for the first time at 4pm, that’s one day already gone. There are some attractions open at night including the Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower, but most close much earlier.
The days are consecutive. Check the opening and closing days of the attractions, many seem to close on Tuesday. If you start a 4 day pass on Wednesday, you can only use it Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The tickets aren’t dated when you buy, the days start from your first use.
There is currently (if you’re quick, it finishes 31st March) an offer on 4 and 6 day Paris Passes which will save you 10% on the normal price.