Museum Pass, Paris
For the first time or return visitor who wants to see a lot, the Paris Museum Pass is not only a monetary bargain but also a time saver as you get to cut the sometimes considerable lines to get in. The cost is (as of June 2013) 2-day pass: 39€ , 4-day pass: 54€, 6-day pass 69€. We've saved money every time we've bought it, not to mention the time standing in lines. The days must be consecutive days.
You can purchase the pass at any of the particpating museums or monuments, online, at FNAC stores, at tourism offices including at the Gare du Nord where the Eurostar comes in or at the airports, you can see the list of places to purchase here. You can buy the pass a day or two in advance as it is not validated until you visit your 1st museum. I bought mine this time at Gare du Nord at a kiosk, perhaps I went to the wrong place as there was a 1.50€ surcharge. You do not want to try and buy at popular attractions such as Versailles or the Louvre.
Virtually all of the major sites in Paris are covered except the Eiffel Tower, the pass includes the Louvre, Musee d'Orsay, Rodin Museum, Arc de Triomphe, Versailles, Fountainbleu, etc. For a full list visit the website.
The queue jumping aspect wasn't as beneficial as on recent visits, the towers of Notre Dame has never allowed queue jumping because of the limit to the number of people who go up at the same time so go there early, before it opens. St. Chapelle also always has a security line but that was quick and no waiting in the ticket queue, the Louvre now has a special line next to the pyramid. We sailed past a huge line at the Arc de Triomphe, was disappointed that there was no special line at Versailles currently. If you are visiting with children under 18 years old, they will be free at most of the sights covered by the Museum Pass, I was still able to cut the lines at most places by just telling them my niece was 17.
Note: a lot of the museums included on the Pass are free the 1st Sunday of the month
The Paris Museum Pass is an excellent value if you plan to visit and see all the major attractions during your stay. The Pass includes points of interest in Paris and the surrounding region.
During my very frist visit to Paris I purchased the Paris Museum Pass because it gave me the best value to see as many major attractions that I wanted to see. As I was traveling alone, I wanted to spend most of my time visiting most of the museum that Paris is famous for.
The good thing about the pass is that you don't have to queue up to enter any of the museums, you just go to the front of the line and show your pass.
The Pass has a few options and depending on your length of stay and your desire to see as much as you can, the options for the pass are either a 2, 4 or 6 day pass.
Fondest memory: The pass provides "free" (you already paid for it) unlimited visits to over 50 museums and monuments.
For a detailed listing of all the locations you can visit with your pass check out their website below:
My wife and I were in Paris at the end of April, 2012. We purchased the 2 Day pass for 39 Euros each. My wife liked the idea that we could go to a number of museums, etc without always having to worry if we had enough Euros in our pocket for that particular museum.
You will save some time in that you will not have to go to a line to pay for your entrance, but in places like Saint-Chapelle you will still have to wait in the security line (almost an hour on a Monday afternoon) before you can go in and actually pay.
After we got home I took at look at what we spent and what we used in the 2 days. Here is the breakdown:
Sunday (Day 1)
Musee Rodin - Normal admission is 7 Euros - No lines if you had pass or if you didn't
Napoleons Tomb - Walked to from Musee Rodin - Admission is 9 Euros and waited behind tourist group to get in
Orangerie - 7.5 Euros, special line for pass holders probably saved us 10 minutes
Monday (Day 2)
Saint-Chapelle 8.5 Euros - Security line for almost one hour, no line to pay
Conciergerie - Next door to Saint-Chapelle - If we had gone here first and paid a total of 11 Euros for both Saint-Chapelle and Conciergerie we could have skipped security line at Saint-Chapelle
We had plans to go to a few more places to use the card, but ran out of time.
Total cost is we had purchased individually was 34.5 Euros. We paid 39 Euros. Saved a little time and didn't have to carry extra Euros so we actually probably broke even.
To actually save money with a 2 day pass you would probably have to use the Pass at 3 different venues.
A 4 day pass is 54 Euros, so if you are going to be in Paris for at least that amount of time then I think it would be worth the money.
The pass can only be used on consecutive days as you will write down the date that you first use the pass when you first use it.
Fondest memory: This was an answer to a question about whether to spend money on a Paris Museum Pass
I often hear how expensive Paris is but like any large city there are things you can do to cut costs.
Museum Pass-My favorite Paris tip is the museum pass if you are looking to see lots of stuff. Not only is it a money saver but you get to bypass those often long lines. Musee Carnavalet (Paris history museum) is free every day. Some museums are also free on the 1st Sunday of the month
On a beautiful sunny day there is nothing like grabbing lunch at the supermarket and having a picnic at the park/gardens. Grab a baguette, cheese, salami, beverages and some sort of pastry.
Another good budget option are the many inexpensive places in the Latin Quarter, lots of doner kebabs (gyros more or less).
Breakfast at the hotel tends to be expensive, you will find all kinds of pastry shops and coffee shops where you can grab a less expensive breakfast.
You can keep the hotel bill under 100€ if you look at 2 star hotels, often they are quite nice and can be charming as well. Budget chains such as Ibis and Campanile are also reasonable and while no frills, they are comfortable and clean. Booking.com is a good place to start looking for hotels.
The Jardin des Plantes is free to visit and quite lovely
No need to take a taxi in Paris, walk, take a bus, take the metro. If you like to walk, a carnet of metro tickets will save you money over the transport passes
One of the best kept secrets at Charles DeGaulle Airport is the tourist information booth.
The one we used is located in the arrivals area of Terminal 2. Not only do they speak English, but you can buy your commuter train (RER) ticket to Paris and your museum pass here.
That way you can bypass all of those nasty lines you find at the ticket vending machines or the lineups at the museums that sell the passes. And they don't charge any more than any of the other places you can buy these!
If you are planning to visit lots of museums, the pass has to be one of the best bargains in town. We bought the 4-day pass and broke even after 1-1/2 days. The next 2-1/2 days were effectively "free".
If you are not planning to do the museum route, don't bother...
If you have figured out that most definitly you will purchase the Museum card ( depends on whichever card you buy). The best place to buy this is at the Airport.. as soon as you grab your bags look for the tourist information desk... there is usualy at least one person at the counter. Most people there are asking for transport directon to get into the city and the line moves fairly quickly.
This is the best place to purchase the Museum card as well as the multile day metro card you can get two birds in one stone.
Fondest memory: Many..
The wonderful bakeries & bread
The fantastic views from the Eiffel tower / Sacre Coeur & Arc de triomp
The Louvre & reniance paintings.
So many.. the list is too long.
The Paris Museum Pass is a real bargain in my opinion. If you plan to visit 4 or more museums and monuments in 2 days or 6 in 4 days or 8 in 6 days, it will not only save you money, but will also allow you to skip lines awaiting entrance. The pass includes over 60 museums & monuments in Paris and the area around Paris, like Verailles. It should be noted that children uner 18 are allowed free access to most of these attractions. The passes are good for 2, 4 or 6 days but you need to remember that these are only consecutive days. Prices as of March, 2000 are 2 days - 32 Euros, 4 days - 48 Euros and 6 days - 64 Euros. They can be purchased on line or at many Paris area locations including CDG Airport. A complete listing of these locations as well as a listing of all the included attractions is on the website as well as hours of operation and closings. It also lists the individual admission costs for each attraction so you can compare costs. The only major thing I have found that is not included is the Eiffel Tower and special exhibitions at the museums. Even if you spend a little extra on the pass, it may be worthwhile for the avoidance of lines as well as the convenience. The website is :
I don't know about buying on-line, but the Paris Museum pass which includes admission to a lot of museums will save you from standing in line. We by-passed a huge line at D'Orsay last November by using it. You can buy them for up to a week but also one day, two day...etc parismuseumpass.com
Fondest memory: The Food!!
To visit museums and monuments I advise you to buy the paris museum pass. It saves money & time because you don't have to wait in the queue.
check this site
Favorite thing: A very good idea when in Paris for a few days is to purchase the Museums and Monuments Pass. Available in muliple day increments, this pass gets the holder into most of the museums and monuments in and around the city. It also enables you to bypass the queues at the larger more famous museums, such as the Louvre and the Musee de Orsay. The pass can be purchased in advance online, through a tour operator or upon arrival at the Paris Office of Tourism. In either case, it is highly recommended. especially if you plan on visiting a number of museums.
To maximize museum and monument visits, I highly recommend to buy the Paris Museum Pass. It's quite economical and saves you time qeueing up on museum entrances. For 30euros you can visit all state museums and monuments and express entrances for 2 days.. Just make sure you have a good plan of which museums/monuments so that you can maximize use of the Museum Pass.
For more information visit:
According to travel guru Rick Steves, "In Paris, there are two classes of sightseers--those with a Paris museum pass and those who stand in line. Serious sightseers save time and money by getting this pass."
With the Museum Pass (Carte Musee), you can breeze past the long lines of tourists, standing around with their hands in their pockets, their eyes locked on to you, to the front of the line at more than 70 museums in Paris. It's well worth the investment if you're staying in Paris for a few days and have a list of museums you'd like to visit. You can visit as many as the museums on the list as many times as you'd like, but they must be used in consecutive days.
You can purchase the pass as a 2-day, 4-day or 6-day pass.
The prices are as follows:
2 days: $30
4 days: $45
6 days: $60
The pass isn't activated until the first time you use it when you enter the date on the pass. It's sold at main Metro stations (we got ours at Cite, near Notre Dame) and museums.
The pass isn't worth buying for kids, as most museums are free for those under 18. Kids can skip the lines with their passholder parents.
This pass is a definite must at Versailles. The lines at Sainte-Chapelle can get really long as well. The looks on the other tourists' faces as you just waltz right up to the ticket booth...if they only knew.
Fondest memory: There are approximately 70 sites you can visit with the museum pass.
Included sights you're likely to visit:
Arc de Triomphe
Les Invalides Museum/Napoleon's Tomb
Notre-Dame Towers (but you can't bypass the line here) and crypt
Cite des Sciences et l'Industrie Museum
Chateau of Fontainebleau
Chateau of Chantilly
Not included with the pass:
Jewish Art and History Museum
Grande Arche de La Defense
With this pass, you can pop freely into sights that you're walking by, even for a few minutes, that otherwise might not be worth the expense.
Paris Museum Pass is the most comfortable tool for the visitors willing to see as much museums and monuments as possible.
It gives you free access to more than 60 museums and monuments in Paris and around, without waiting in line for buying the entrance ticket (a really important issue because Paris is a very crowded town).
There are three types of passes, according to the number of days:
- 1-day pass - EUR 18-
- 3-days pass - EUR 36-
- 5-days pass - EUR 52-
(the prices are valid for January 2006 and there is a slight difference between the prices we have found on official sites on Internet, which were lower, and the prices in Paris).
Among the museums and monuments we have visited using our 3-days pass I can count: Arc de Triomphe, Musee de l'Armee, Centre Pompidou, Louvre, Notre-Dame, Musee d'Orsay, Pantheon, Musee Rodin, Sainte-Chapelle, Basilique royale de Saint-Denis.
You need to order this and have it sent to you in the States - I opted for them to deliver to my hotel in Paris and it was lost - either by the delivery person or by the front desk person - nobody would admit to anything......but regardless - it is the best investment that we made...
It allows you to jump in and out of museums all over Paris without waiting in lines and the value is extraordinary - we figured we saved about $65 for the 3 day pass - P.S. I was advised not to go with the transport option since you can get anywhere in Paris on the Metro