Paris Passes

Jul 25th, 2012, 12:15 AM
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Paris Passes

I'm sure this has been asked before, but the only thread I can find on the subject was a 1998 one! We are a couple spending 4 days in Paris in late August. I'm wondering about the idea of Museum Passes (56 euros p.p.) versus pay-as-we-go. It seems we'd need to be doing lots of museums to justify that cost. We've already done the Louvre and a few others on previous trips, and this time we'd like to visit Ste Chapelle, Musee d'Orsay, and Chateau Chantilly. And in addition to comparative costs there is the fact that passes apparently will get us to the front of the queue. Is that important for these destinations? (Especially given that we'll try to do Ste Chapelle early in the morning for instance). Thanks everyone.
twoflower is offline  
Jul 25th, 2012, 03:50 AM
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This has been asked a thousand times; at least once a week. You have to make the determination for yourselves in terms of money and time saved. On each thread about half the responses are for the pass and half are against the pass. I've only once purchased the museum pass and that was when they offered a 1 day pass. Many museums offer on line ticketing so you don't have to stand in line to buy tickets.

At Ste-Chapelle you will have to stand in the security line even if you have tickets. I don't think early morning is the best time for Ste-Chapelle as you'll want full sun to see the windows. Otherwise what's the point in going there. The chapel is surrounded by buildings so the sun needs to be over those buildings to shine into the upper chapel. And whose to say the security lines will be any shorter in the early morning as I'm sure lots of people go into the prison in the morning.
adrienne is offline  
Jul 25th, 2012, 05:58 AM
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Oops - who's to say (I just teased someone in the office for incorrect grammar and here I am making mistakes!)
adrienne is offline  
Jul 25th, 2012, 06:29 AM
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Go to this site. Look up the museums you want to see to check the price(s). Compare based upon the price.

Also, if you're there for four days total, I'd imagine the 2 day pass for 39 Euro would be sufficient, especially if you're only wanting to see the three places listed.
apersuader65 is offline  
Jul 25th, 2012, 06:37 AM
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We use a 2-day pass on short trips to Paris and a 4-day pass on longer stays. We probably don't recoup the full cost of the pass but it is very convenient for visits to the D'Orsay and the Louvre to avoid lines. My brother in law usually makes 2 or 3 visits to the Louvre on each trip which he might not do if he had to wait in line and pay individual entry costs each time. So, it has its benefits. However, if you plan to visit only those 3 sights and don't mind waiting in line, it probably won't benefit you much.
mamcalice is offline  
Jul 26th, 2012, 04:36 PM
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The 3 places mentioned in the OP are a minimum - if we were to buy a pass we would of course try to maximise its use by adding more places, e.g. Musee de l'Orangerie. But there's a limit to how much more we can add because we've already visited many of the places a Museum Pass would get us into, and there are many other (non-museum) attractions and activities we want to do in Paris as well.

One of the attractions of a Museum Pass was its ability to get us straight to the front of the queue, and I'm now somewhat confused to hear that apparently this won't apply at Ste Chapelle, because another forum I read (Tripadvisor, I think) said that a Museum Pass would get us to the front of the queue for Ste Chapelle! Which is correct?

The only reason I thought of early morning for Ste Chapelle was to beat the crowds, but I'm grateful for Adrienne's tip about catching the sunlight later in the day. It's just that I tend no to "do" queues! (On our last trip to Paris we saw the queue for Ste Chapelle and walked away)!

I don't understand the reference to people going in the prison in the morning. What's that about?
twoflower is offline  
Jul 26th, 2012, 06:39 PM
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If Ste-Chapelle is part of the museum pass then you will skip the ticket line of course. Although I've never seen a line to buy tickets.

The chapel is inside the Palace of Justice. You must be security screened to get into the complex. That is where the lines are. No one is exempt from security screening and you cannot jump the line just because you have a museum pass. Many (or most) people in line are not going to Ste-Chapelle.

On your last trip did you go through security? If not then you did not see the line for Ste-Chapelle. You saw the security line.

What's going to the prison about? There's a prison inside the complex. It's part of the Palace of Justice, the law courts, etc. Whatever else is inside this area. People go inside this complex all day long.

Once you get through security you want to go to the right. Don't follow the people going left as that is not where you want to be.
adrienne is offline  
Aug 4th, 2012, 08:36 PM
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OK thanks. We saw a line of people stretching all the way along the street as far as the next corner. It didn't seem to be moving. From what you're telling me, that must have been the security line and a museum pass wouldn't have got us to the front? But once through security it gets quicker if we're going to Ste Chapelle, because most people are going to the Palace of Justice - in which case the get-to-the-front benefit of a museum pass might not be necessary anyway. Have I got that right?

Whether the queue is for security or for Ste-Chapelle itself, it's still a daunting prospect if the museum pass offers no way of bypassing it. As I said, last time we preferred to move on to other things. I guess we'll just have to hope the queue is shorter next time we're there (23-24 August). But whatever happens, what I get from all of this is that the Museum Pass is probably not a good option for us.

Thanks everyone.
twoflower is offline  
Aug 4th, 2012, 09:43 PM
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Get a museum pass if you plan to visit a bunch of museums, but NOT the Paris Pass, which is always a rip-off unless you race around Paris going to 20 sites a day.
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