Air Travel

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Air Travel

Flying time to Paris is 7½ hours from New York, 9 hours from Chicago, 11 hours from Los Angeles, and 1 hour from London. Flying time between Paris and Nice is 1 hour.

As one of the world's most popular destinations, Paris is served by many international carriers. Air France, the French flag carrier, offers many flights between Paris's Charles de Gaulle Airport and Newark, New Jersey; New York City's JFK Airport; and Washington's Dulles Airport; as well as Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Philadelphia, and San Francisco. Most other North American cities are served through Air France partnerships with Delta, with flights to Paris from Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Detroit, Minneapolis, New York City's JFK, Philadelphia, Pittsburg, Salt Lake City, and Seattle. Another popular carrier is United, with nonstop flights to Paris from Chicago, Cleveland, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Newark, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. American Airlines offers daily nonstop flights to Charles de Gaulle Airport from numerous cities, including Boston, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami, and New York City's JFK.

Airlines and Airports

Airline and Airport Links.com (www.airlineandairportlinks.com.)

Airline Security Issues

Transportation Security Administration (www.tsa.gov.)

Airports

There are two major gateway airports to France, both just outside the capital: Orly, 16 km (10 miles) south of Paris, and Charles de Gaulle, 26 km (16 miles) northeast of the city. Orly mostly handles flights to and from destinations within France and the rest of Europe, while Charles de Gaulle is France's major international gateway. The smaller Beauvais Airport, 75 km (46 miles) north of Paris, is used by European budget airlines. At Charles de Gaulle, also known as Roissy, there's a TGV station at Terminal 2, where you can connect to trains going all over the country. Many airlines have flights to Lyon, Lourdes, Perpignan, Biarritz, Nantes, Nice, Marseille, Bordeaux, and Toulouse.

Airport Information

Charles de Gaulle/Roissy (39-50 in France [€.34 per min]. www.aeroportsdeparis.fr.)

Orly (39–50 in France [€.04 per min]. www.aeroportsdeparis.fr.)

Ground Transportation

From Charles de Gaulle, the fastest and least expensive way to get into Paris is on the RER-B line, the suburban express train, which runs daily from 5 am to 11:30 pm. The free CGDVal lightrail connects each terminal to the Roissypôle RER station in less than 8 minutes, running daily nonstop 24/7. There is also a free "navette" shuttle bus, although you have to wait for it outside each terminal, and traffic can make travel time up to 30 minutes to the RER station. Trains to central Paris (Gare du Nord, Les Halles, St-Michel, Luxembourg) depart every 15 minutes. The fare (including métro connection) is €9.25, and journey time is about 30 minutes.

The Air France shuttle is a comfortable option to get to and from the city—you don't need to have flown the carrier to use this service. Line 2 goes from the airport to Paris's Charles de Gaulle Étoile and Porte Maillot from 5:45 am to 11 pm. It leaves every 15 minutes and costs €15, which you can pay on board. Passengers arriving in Terminal 1 need to take Exit 32 on the Arrivals level; Terminals 2B and 2D, Exit 6; Terminals 2E and 2F, Exit 3. Line 4 goes to Montparnasse and the Gare de Lyon from 7 am to 9 pm. Buses run every 30 minutes and cost €16.50. Passengers arriving in Terminal 1 need to look for Exit 32, Terminals 2A and 2C need to take Exit C2, Terminals 2B and 2D Exit B1, and Terminals 2E and 2F Exit 3.

Another option is to take Roissybus, operated by the Paris Transit Authority, which runs between Charles de Gaulle and the Opéra every 20 minutes from 6 am to 11 pm; the cost is €10. The trip takes about 45 minutes in regular traffic, about 90 minutes in rush-hour traffic.

Taxis are your least desirable mode of transportation into the city. If you're traveling at peak tourist times, you may have to stand in a long line with many other disgruntled European travelers. Journey times, and as a consequence, prices, are therefore unpredictable. At best, the journey takes 30 minutes, but it can take as long as 90 minutes during rush hour. Count on a €50 to €70 fare.

Airport Connection is the name of just one of a number of van services that serve both Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports. Prices are set, so it costs the same no matter how long the journey takes. To make a reservation, call, email, or fax your flight details at least one week in advance to the shuttle company and an air-conditioned van with a bilingual chauffeur will be waiting for you on your arrival. Note that these shuttle vans pick up and drop off other passengers.

From Orly, the most economical way to get into Paris is to take the RER-C or Orlyrail line. Catch the free shuttle bus from the terminal to the Pont de Rungis train station. Trains to Paris leave every 15 minutes. Passengers arriving in either the South or West Terminal need to use Exit G. The fare is €7.70, and journey time is about 35 minutes. Another option is to take the monorail service, Orlyval, which runs between the Antony RER-B station and Orly Airport daily every 4 to 8 minutes from 6 am to 11 pm. Passengers arriving in the South Terminal should look for Exit K, those arriving in the West Terminal, Exit W. The fare to downtown Paris is €10.90.

You can also take an Air France bus Line 1 from Orly to Les Invalides on the Left Bank and Montparnasse, the Line 1* also stops at Etoile and Porte d'Orleans on request; these run every 15 minutes from 6 am to 11 pm. (You need not have flown on Air France to use this service.) The fare is €11.50, and the trip takes between 30 and 45 minutes, depending on traffic. Those arriving in Orly South need to look for Exit L; those arriving in Orly West, Exit D. The Paris Transit Authority's Orlybus is yet another option; buses leave every 15 minutes for the Denfert-Rochereau métro station; the cost is €6.90. You can economize using RATP Bus 183, which shuttles you from the airport to Line 7, métro Porte de Choisy station, for the price of a city bus ticket. It operates daily from 5:30 am to 8:30 pm at the Orly Sud terminal.

Contacts

Air France Bus (08–92–35–08–20 in France, [€.34 per min]. www.lescarsairfrance.com.)

Super Shuttle (08–11–70–78–12 in France, [at least €.06 per min]. www.supershuttle.fr.)

RATP (including Roissybus, Orlybus, Orlyval) (3246 in France [€0.34 per min]. www.ratp.fr.)

Parishuttle (08–92–69–69–00 in France . www.parishuttle.com.)

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