As in many big cities, getting around Paris by car is not always easy. But what is even less easy is to park. Where can I park? How much does it cost? How does it work? Where to park in Paris ?
Parking on the street, a real treasure hunt
Even before addressing the issue of price, finding a place to park in Paris is an adventure. The Observatoire des déplacements de Paris has counted 140,000 parking spots in the streets of the capital, they represent only 17% of the parking places in Paris.
This is the number of cars in the Paris region!
This means that the chances of finding a place on the street are slim.
Now, in case you manage to find a place, you have to pay. And if the search time didn’t deter you, maybe the prices will.
Even though prices in Paris are much lower than in other European cities, you will need to pay between 2.40€ and 4.40€ per hour to park in the streets of Paris.
In order to reduce the number of cars in the streets, the Paris City Hall has set prices that increase very quickly with each hour to discourage people from coming to Paris by car. Moreover, it is not possible to park for more than 6 hours in the same spot. If you exceed 6 hours, your car can get impounded. Note that the rates are slightly lower for the districts that are not part of the hyper center of Paris.
Parking lots, a more affordable option?
Your other option if you want to park in Paris is to turn to the underground parking lots. It will then be easier to find a place, although… Out of the 672,000 parking spots in the capital, only 145,000 are accessible to the public. The rest are in private parking lots.
However, if you need to park for a long time, we recommend parking lots. For the same amount of time, parking in a parking lot will cost you about 10€ less than if you parked on the street. And unlike on the street, you can stay parked for more than 6 hours.
Another advantage of parking lots is that you can book in advance thanks to applications such as Zenpark or Parclick. So you are sure to have a place in a parking lot close to where you want to go.
Our advice on how to park in Paris
As you may have noticed, parking in Paris is not easy. And even if you manage to do so, it will often be expensive.
The Paris City Council aims to considerably reduce the number of cars in Paris. Therefore, it regularly removes parking spaces to replace them with shared mobility means. Parking in the capital will therefore be increasingly difficult and expensive.
Today, whether you are in Paris or coming from the suburbs, it is in your best interest to use public transport or shared mobility means, or possibly a cab.
For people living around Paris, this solution may seem complex. However, it is not because the city of Paris has many park-and-ride facilities where you can leave your car and take public transport. Moreover, the metro and RER lines are constantly being extended to serve the outskirts.
Take a cue from Joe
Joe lives in Croissy sur Seine and has to be at Place de l’Etoile at 9am, so he has 2 ways to get there. Either he takes his car, or he uses public transportation. To know which one to choose, he calculates the travel time, the price and the tranquility of the trip.
By car, Joe will need about 50 minutes, not counting the unexpected. And he will have to add to that the time to find a place which can go from 10 min to 40 min, especially at this place. Joe will have to drive for about 1h30.
To that he will have to add the gasoline costs and especially the price of the parking, knowing that he cannot stay more than 6 hours at the same place in the street. On top of all that, there is the stress of driving in traffic, of being late, of not finding a place.
Otherwise, Joe’s other option is to take public transportation. Starting from Croissy-sur-Seine, he just has to join the RER A line, by car or by bike. Then in 15 minutes he will be directly arrived at Place de l’Etoile. He will not have to worry about finding a place or paying for parking.
In terms of costs, he will spend much less on gas because he will have a maximum of 10 minutes of car to reach the RER, and if he takes the bike it will not cost him anything. If he has to make this trip often he can take a Navigo pass and if not a single use ticket of 1,90€ will be enough.
In addition to saving time and money, Joe will be able to commute in peace while listening to a podcast or reading a book with no fear of being late.
If this article has helped you, don’t hesitate to tell us in comments and to share it. Do you have personal experiences about the advantages of public transportation in Paris? Tell them in comments, they could help other people.
To discover other useful things about Paris, you can read these articles:
Looking for products from around the world? Here you can find our list of the best places to buy things from from all over the world in Paris: https://absolutely-french.eu/ou-acheter-les-choses-de-differents-pays-a-paris/
You just arrived in Paris or you are coming to Paris soon, check out this article to make sure you have the essentials apps to live in Paris: https://absolutely-french.eu/appplications-indispensables-a-paris/
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