Night transport in Paris

Metro, RER, Noctilien, Vélib’, taxis and more: getting around Greater Paris after dark

Depending on where you’re going, you may want to read up on the various transportation possibilities beforehand, to make sure you arrive at your destination without any hiccups. Particularly since “You booze, you cruise, you lose!”

Métro

Place Monge, station de métro, Paris © Clicsouris

The Metro is the easiest, least expensive and quickest way to go out and to get home. Fourteen lines crisscross Greater Paris, from east to west and north to south.

Good to know: As part of certain celebrations and events (New Year’s Eve, Fête de la Musique, etc.), the Metro is open—and free—most of the night.

The rest of the time, make sure to check first and last train times, which vary from line to line. 

As a general rule:

  • Sunday through Thursday, the last train arrives at the end of the line at 1:15 a.m. at the latest
  • Friday, Saturday and the night before public holidays, the last train arrives at the end of the line at 2:15 a.m. at the latest
  • The first morning trains start their runs at 5:30 a.m. on all the lines

For exact times of first and last trains, visit the RATP website

RER

Logo RER © DR

The RER commuter lines allow riders to travel through the capital faster than the Metro. They’re also a great way to reach many of the surrounding suburbs. RER trains are slightly less frequent than the Metro lines, but run all day, until 12:30 a.m. The first trains start their morning runs between 5:15 and 5:30 a.m. depending on the line.

For precise times of the first and last RER visit visit the RER website 

Noctilien

Logo Noctilien © DR

When the Metro has closed for the night, the Noctiliens night bus lines are the least expensive way to get around Greater Paris. Forty-seven lines crisscross the capital and make stops in several suburbs: Saint-Ouen, Vincennes, Montreuil, Mantes-la-Jolie, etc. Noctilien buses run from 12:30 to 5:30 a.m.

You can use the same tickets for Noctilien buses that you use for the rest of the Greater Paris public transportation system (Metro, bus and RER) within the city limits: Ticket T+. Depending on where you’re going, you’ll need to validate a ticket for the first two zones, then an additional ticket for each subsequent zone you enter. If you change buses, you’ll also need to validate a new ticket.

  • A Ticket T+ costs €1.80.
  • Wait time between Noctilien buses varies from 15 minutes to an hour

For precise times of the first and last Noctiliens, visit the Noctilien website

Velib'

Vélib Métropole - Balade à deux, Paris © Alain LONGEAUD

For more independence, choose Velib’! Renting a Velib’ bike has become second nature for many Parisians, and the capital boasts a total of 700 kilometers of bike paths. Velib’ gives riders a chance to enjoy a bit of fresh air at a very competitive price.  

There are 1,261 Vélib’ stations spread throughout Paris. To rent a bike, simply use your bank card at the automatic terminal. The first half hour is free; you’ll be charged €1 for each additional half hour.

And let’s not forget that “You booze, you cruise, you lose,” also applies to bicycles. Riding a bike under the influence is just as dangerous as driving a car, and police officers will not be any more lenient. 

See the Velib' website for full information

Taxis

Enseigne lumineuse des taxis parisiens © OTCP - Jacques Lebar

When there are no more metros and there are too many people on the Noctiliens, and when you’re too tired to hire a Vélib, the quickest and most comfortable (but most expensive) solution is a taxi. 

The minimum fare for any trip is €7.

Good to know: The taxi reservation fee in Greater Paris is now fixed, regardless of the distance traveled by the taxi before pick-up.

  • Immediate reservation: €4 euros
  • Advance reservation: €7 euros

Remember that taxi drivers have the right to refuse passengers who are under the influence. 

 More info and guidelines for taxis