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What are current baggage restrictions when visiting Paris museums?

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Feb 19th, 2016, 06:59 AM
  #1
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What are current baggage restrictions when visiting Paris museums?

I've noticed that the Louvre and Musée d' Orsay are now advising visitors to their museums not to bring luggage and oversized bags.

I'm used to carrying my 12-inch by 16-inch shoulder bag around with me when I travel.

Is that okay given the limits now placed on baggage in light of new security concerns? Are there any museums in Paris that have either tighter or lesser restrictions?

Are there, in fact, any other security issues besides baggage that potential visitors to the museums should know about?
wanderful is offline  
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Feb 19th, 2016, 07:55 AM
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Just like in airports, what is allowed in museums can change from day to day, depending on who is on duty.
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Feb 19th, 2016, 07:56 AM
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Does your shoulder bag just look like a larger ladies purse.. because they may let those pass.. but if it looks like a carry on bag.. might be a problem.
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Feb 19th, 2016, 08:13 AM
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The official Louvre website mentions specific measurements. Have a look, but you should be okay.
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Feb 19th, 2016, 08:34 AM
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We were in Paris most of this past week and my husband was able to get into all the museums we visited with his messenger bag (big enough to hold a 15" laptop, although he wasn't carrying the laptop with him). Your mobile phones will need to be taken out of your bag for the security check.

One thing to note: the security checks mean that even if you have a museum pass, you can't breeze right in. The larger museums may have separate, shorter security lines for the pass holders (the Musee d'Orsay did) but not the smaller/medium-sized ones (Cluny, Guimet, Cognac Jay, Rodin etc).
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Mar 17th, 2016, 07:11 PM
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Bumping to add a related question - we will be in Paris in about a month and had purchased a couple of gadgets for picnicking, including some folding eating utensils meant for camping that include a maybe 2" knife (so we can buy cheese, sausage, etc. while out and about and cut them into usable format). But now it occurs to me that maybe anything sharp, even something that small, might not make it in.

We'd be glad to leave lunch bags at coat check if this is an option, but I don't know whether it is, and there's not a lot of detail about such matters on the websites for various attractions. And I don't want to bring something that I will potentially have to ditch at the gate, or miss the attraction to take it back to where we are staying. Any recent experiences to share with this sort of thing? I don't anticipate our bags will be large at all, just enough to carry phone, wallet, lunch, and a couple of other odds and ends.
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Mar 18th, 2016, 10:01 AM
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You really shouldn't be carrying a metal knife or weapon around with you when visiting museums. You can cut cheese and sausage with a plastic knife, I've done it many times. Plus, they'd be longer than 2 inches so easier to use. I doubt if they'd confiscate that, but if they did, it woudln't be worth much.

Knives are not allowed any more than guns, cutters or explosives are. A two inch sharp metal knife can not only hurt someone, but violence has been conducted with knives against paintings themselves, you know (slashing canvas).

These are the Louvre's official regulations, for example, and they specifically say knives are not allowed, among a lot of other things
< - des armes et des munitions ;
- des outils, notamment les cutters, tournevis, clefs, marteaux, pinces et sécateurs ;
- des générateurs d’aérosol (par exemple les teintures, peintures et laques)
contenant des substances susceptibles d’endommager les œuvres,
les bâtiments et/ou les équipements de sécurité ;
- des armes blanches définies à la sixième catégorie du paragraphe I de l’article 2B du décret du 6 mai 1995 susvisé (notamment les poignards, les couteaux, les matraques, les coups de poing) et des rasoirs «sabre» pliants ou non. A l’entrée des espaces d’accueil, les petits couteaux de poche font l’objet, sous contrôle des agents les ayant détectés, d’un dépôt obligatoire dans un sachet en plastique fourni par le musée ;
- des générateurs de produit incapacitant ou neutralisant,
des armes électriques de neutralisation des personnes ;
- des battes de base-ball ;
- des objets excessivement lourds, encombrants ou nauséabonds ;
- des œuvres d’art ou objets d’antiquité ;
- des quantités de boisson ou de nourriture excessives à l’appréciation des agents effectuant le contrôle d’entrée dans les espaces d’accueil ;
- des animaux, à l’exception des chiens guides d’aveugles ou d’assistance accompagnant les personnes justifiant d’un handicap moteur ou mental ;
- des substances explosives, inflammables ou volatiles.>>

the phrase you want is this one <>

It isn't clear if you get them back or not.
Mar 18th, 2016, 04:48 PM
  #8
 
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Thanks for posting that - I did look in the English version of the site, just because my French is not fluent and so I read much faster in English, and saw nothing nearly that detailed. Seems like it would be helpful to have in English, no, if you're going to go to all the trouble of having an English site to begin with? But I've been pretty sleep-deprived, so maybe I just missed it.
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Mar 18th, 2016, 06:30 PM
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I would think that with current security measures at their highest level through out Europe, any knife,regardless of length,would be considered an absolute no-no.
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Mar 19th, 2016, 11:42 AM
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Well, I've gone into plenty of museums in other countries where terrorist attacks have been an issue (Turkey, or Spain in the 1980s) and not had my bag so much as opened. I haven't been to Paris in almost 10 years, which is why I asked. I can't ever remember having a normal-sized bag searched in the U.S. in a museum.
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Mar 23rd, 2016, 08:27 AM
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The bag searches are almost always visual, and nobody pokes around in your stuff because there simply isn't time to handle the crowds. An exception might be made if someone were suspected of carrying heavy metal objects or something else "not quite right" - in which case, the bag would be searched by hand.

Given the fact that the searches are cursory at best, it would make me uneasy to be in crowds of people carrying luggage or backpacks. Although I was once whacked nearly unconscious by a woman wielding an enormous Prada bag - probably filled with gold ingots...
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Mar 23rd, 2016, 08:46 AM
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Some years ago, my brother in law, visiting England from Los Angeles, tried to accompany his family on a visit to the London Eye. He was carrying a pocket knife in his daysack, which was spotted at a security check.

The staff politely followed their instructions and called the Police. The Police, equally politely, took him to the local Police Station where they photographed and fingerprinted him, recorded his offence, issued a caution, and then returned him to the London Eye. There have been proposals to have mandatory custodial sentences for anyone carrying a knife over a certain size.

Don't risk it. Plastic knives are OK.
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