Paris Transportation Tips by breughel Top 5 Page for this destination
Paris Transportation: 1,489 reviews and 1,471 photos
Versailles Rive Gauche RER platform.
To travel by the RER C5 to Versailles Rive Gauche (Château de Versailles) you need a "BILLET ORIGINE-DESTINATION" since the end 2010 (before it was called "Billet Ile-de-France") which combines Metro inside Paris and the RER trip from Paris to Versailles RIVE GAUCHE.
You can buy this Billet Origine-Destination (3,25 € since 1/01/2012) as well as the return ticket at the metro stations desks or the machines. For details see my tip.
You have to validate your ticket when you enter your Metro station but also when entering the RER platforms and leaving the station of Versailles. So keep your ticket for the entire trip.
When arriving on the platform of the RER station (for example St-Michel Notre-Dame or Invalides) look well out to take the right RER C5 to Versailles RIVE GAUCHE (do not take the other RER C7 or C8 trains).
There are trains about every 25 minutes and the trip takes 30 minutes. The RER of 08.26 h at Invalides station will bring you at the opening of the Château gates at 9.00 h.
The former Billet Ile-de-France has been replaced at the end 2010 by a BILLET ORIGINE-DESTINATION (still valid in 2012).
Please find here the explanation on its use which is the same as the former Billet Ile-de-France. The RATP website is not providing (2010) a translation in English of the above, they write:
"There is no English translation for the content you're about to read.
The content displayed below is the original document version."
ON THEIR RENOVATED WEBSITE 2011 THEY PROVIDE A TRANSLATION.
" Le billet Origine-Destination permet de réaliser un voyage entre 2 gares du réseau ferré d'Île-de-France : RER et trains de banlieue*. Il est utilisable dans un sens ou dans l'autre, par exemple : Paris - Antony ou Antony - Paris.
Les billets à destination ou au départ de Paris permettent d'utiliser la correspondance métro et RER dans Paris.
Où l’acheter ?
Le billet Origine-Destination peut être acheté aux guichets et sur les automates, dans la gare ou la station de métro de départ ou d'arrivée.
Le coût de ce billet est variable selon son origine (gare de départ) et sa destination (gare d'arrivée).
Son prix n'est pas lié aux zones, celles-ci étant réservées aux forfaits de transport."
Here my own translation in the VT lingua franca:
The origin-destination ticket allows for travel between two stations on the rail network in the Île-de-France RER commuter train. It is used in one way or another, for example: Paris - Antony and Antony - Paris.
Tickets to and from Paris can be used for the Metro and RER in Paris.
Where to buy it?
The origin-destination tickets can be purchased at the counters and ticket machines in the railway station or subway station of departure or arrival.
The cost of the ticket varies according to its origin (departure station) and destination (destination station).
Its price is not related to areas, these being reserved for transportation packages.
For Paris to Versailles Rive Gauche the price increased on 1/01/2012 to 3,25 €.
Billet to Versailles.
The former Billet Ile-de-France has been replaced at the end 2010 by a BILLET ORIGINE - DESTINATION (still valid 2012).
See my new tip.
This is now the ticket most visitors of Versailles use as they have to travel outside Paris with the RER line C Versailles Rive Gauche.
- The "billet Origine-Destination" enables you to travel between 2 given stations on the Ile-de-France network, either Transilien or RER. In Paris itself, a "Ticket t+" is enough.
The "billet Origine-Destination" is also valid on the Noctilien buses. However, in this case, it needs to be bought in advance (not on sale in the bus).
If the departure or arrival stop is in Paris, the "billet Origine-Destination" enables you to begin or end your journey at any RER or metro station in Paris.
The "billet Origine-Destination" is valid in both directions, for example: Paris-Melun or Melun-Paris.
The "billet ORIGINE-DESTINATION" is a ticket for occasional trips between Paris and the banlieue (like Versailles) combining Metro and RER or train. Price is calculated (by the selling desk or the machine) depending on place of departure and destination. One can use the ticket in one sense or in the other, of course for a return trip you need to buy two tickets.
For Versailles the single fare is 3,25 € (since 1/01/2012) from the centre of Paris what includes the Metro to the RER C station and the 30 minutes trip to Versailles Rive Gauche.
The ticket has no date for use.
The "Ticket t+"
From 1st July 2007, the mauve-coloured t ticket has been replaced by the new white-coloured t+ ticket.
The t+ ticket enables the customer to travel on:
the whole of the METRO and the Montmartre funicular
the RER (RATP and SNCF) within Paris
the RATP buses in Paris and the suburbs (except for lines with special fares) and to make connections between the Metro and the RER in Paris.
Connections between metro/bus, metro/tram, RER/bus, RER/tram with the same ticket t+ are NOT possible.
The t+ ticket brings in a more extensive service with a new functionality:
the possibility of making bus/bus and bus/tram connections.
"connection" means transferring from one bus line to another.
How do you use it ?
After validating it every time you board a bus or tram, you have an hour and a half between the first validation and the last validation to make one or more connections.
The t+ ticket is sold singly (full fare) or in a carnet (full or reduced fare).
Be careful ! Aboard buses the drivers have a different ticket they sell which does not allow connections.
Airports: Travelling to and from the airports requires special tickets.
On 1/07/2010 the full price of this t+ ticket has been increased to 1,70 € (still valid in 2012) and the carnet of 10 tickets is now (2012) at 12,70 €.
The "carnet de 10" is very often used by visitors of Paris but note that the selling desks in the Metro stations are not always open (even often closed) so prepare yourself to buy them at the machine by having enough € coins with you. Rather few machines accept bank notes.
I noted that the former tickets with extended zones 4 - 6 do not exist anymore (except for travel subscriptions "abonnements" ) but were replaced by a Billet Ile-de-France which calculates the price from inside Paris to a specific destination outside (for example Versailles). This ticket is now (2011 - 2012) called Billet Origine-Destination.
See my tip about this new billet.
Metro & RER Tickets machine.
The desks in the Metro stations are not always open so that the tourist arriving in Paris might have to use the ticket machines.
I know from experience that one can buy at the machine the normal ticket t+, the carnet de 10 tickets t+ and the Billet Ile-de-France now (2011) replaced by a Billet Origine-Destination for travelling by Metro + RER outside the centre (see my tip).
From the photo you might see that the choice of the type of ticket is made by rolling a cylinder below the screen until what you need.
Payment on most machines is by € coins or bank card. Some machines, but not all, accept also bank notes. So take your precautions and have enough coins if you want for example to buy a carnet of 10 tickets at 12,50 €. (Since 1/07/2011)
If I remember well most explanations were in French but I paid no attention to this point as it is my usual language.
The PARISVISITE pass can also be bought at the automatic machines in all Metro, RER, Railway SNCF stations according to the answer I got from the RATP (btw prompt service).
"Merci de votre visite sur le site de la RATP.
Paris Visite est en vente dans toutes les stations de métro (guichet et machines automatiques), toutes les gares RER, les points de vente bus, les gares SNCF, les aéroports de Paris, et les bureaux de l'Office de Tourisme de Paris."
So, bon voyage.
Velib & vandalism.
There is a face of Velib which is rather sad.
Since July 2007 there have been 18.000 degradations, 8.000 thefts, 3.500 complaints at the police, according to the French press.
It goes from warped frameworks, twisted handlebars, punctured tires, broken baskets, etc. even bicycles thrown in the Seine!
J.C. Decaux owner of some 20.000 bicycles put into circulation has a subsidiary company Cyclocity with 500 workers for the maintenance. There are 1.500 repairs per day in 10 workshops. They even have a barge for repairs circulating on the Seine.
As a consequence of the increasing degradations, only 46% of the “Vélibistes” declare to be satisfied with the state of the bicycles, against 55% in 2008.
The French TV announced the sixth fatal accident in Paris of a user of Velib bicycle self-service since its launching on July 15th, 2007.
They did not mention the number of deadly accidents implying cyclists using their own bicycle.
Any person having visited Paris will have noted that the traffic is particularly dense and often risky. Cohabitation between cyclists, busses, taxis, heavy trucks and vehicles of delivery is particularly dangerous because these vehicles are generally authorized to drive on the same lanes as the bicycles!
These accidents with Velib users were almost all due to a truck or bus turning right without having seen the cyclist on their side; the traditional problem of “the dead angle”.
If you are a tourist in Paris and want to drive a bicycle be particularly careful. This city does not have the infrastructures reserved exclusively to the cyclists such as in Amsterdam for example.
Best is to choose for your cycling days of less traffic like Sundays or the periods of holidays like August.
Metro 14 at Madeleine
The M14 line is from what I have seen in Paris the only modern metro line.
It is a rather short line from MADELEINE, Pyramides, Châtelet, Gare de Lyon, Bercy, Cour St-Emilion, Bibliothèque Fr. Mitterand, to OLYMPIADES. The stations are more distant from each other than with older lines so that the journey is faster.
Particularities are the platforms separated by a glass barrier from the rail track. The metro train stops exactly at the spots where the doors which open automatically are located.
The wagons are of the continue type, better for the safety feeling but providing a strong draught of air what is not so bad on warm days. This latest M14 line seems located deep in the ground so that at La Madeleine there are three escalators needed to get down to the platform.
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