How can I avoid high transport ticket costs during Paris 2024 Olympics?

Prices of some transport will be doubled during the Games

Public transport bosses aim to reduce queues at busy stations during the Games

Reader Question: Is there a way to avoid paying double price for metro tickets during the Paris Olympics? I am often in the city (not going just for the Games) and as a resident of a nearby department it seems unfair I also have to pay more.

Transportation costs will rise temporarily during the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, with metro and bus tickets doubling in price to €4 and €5 respectively for physically purchased tickets.

Head of the region’s public transport authority Valérie Pécresse said this was to reduce queues at major stations during the busy period

Her reasoning is that no one will be willing to pay this full price and so will not queue for these ticket types when alternatives will be available. 

However it is unclear how well tourists will know about the alternatives in advance which will be available for both residents and tourists alike, as long as they plan in advance.

Those who travel using the standard weekly or monthly Navigo pass (the name for the transport cards) – either through their physical card or smartphone – will not see an increased costs during the Games.

If you are a resident of the Paris area and rarely use public transport but are likely to do so given that many roads in the capital will be affected during the Games, the Navigo Liberté+ is another option. 

This caps journey costs at €1.73 per trip, with a maximum threshold of €8.65 per day, making it a good option if only travelling for a few days. 

Using your smartphone 

If you have a smartphone that uses the Android operating system you can download the IDF Mobilités app and use it to buy single-use tickets, short-term passes, or renew your weekly/monthly Navigo pass. 

All ticket barriers in the capital have both the function to scan a card or smartphone to open.

Note however that there are some Google, Samsung, and Pixel phones, as well as all iPhones that run on the Apple operating system, that cannot use the app to buy tickets.

Most phones regardless of operating system can be used to recharge weekly or monthly passes.

Tickets bought in advance on phones will remain at the usual €2 price. 

Read more: SEE: 2024 airport taxi rates and fares for other trips in France

Buying physical tickets in advance 

If you do not feel comfortable using your phone you can still purchase physical paper tickets to use at the barriers at their current rate until closer to the Games. 

The price switch will happen on July 20. Tickets purchased prior to the price switch will still be valid during the event.

You can also purchase a Navigo Easy card, which is a paper version of the physical plastic card style pass. 

Unlike the main Navigo cards (for weekly or monthly passes), it can have single tickets loaded onto it and then can be ‘topped up’ as and when needed. In addition it can be used by different people, as you do not need to give your name or personal details to acquire one of the cards unlike a traditional pass. 

Weekly or monthly passes cannot be loaded onto these cards. 

You will be able to top up both your phone and the Navigo Easy card with up to 30 tickets. 

Read more: What changes in France in 2024 for public transport?