Although most flights from Paris to North America fly into Paris-Charles de Gaulle (CDG), Paris-Orly Airport is still widely used for a host of domestic and European flights. Much like its counterpart to the north of the city, Orly is located several miles outside of Paris itself. Despite being closer than CDG, getting into the city can be slightly confusing for visitors. This article serves to explain the best methods of getting into Paris.
First: Avoid taxis at all costs. There are plenty of other options (public transport, private shuttle companies, etc.) that are cheaper, more secure, and more convenient. A shuttle company (Airport Connection for example) allows you to book online, simply call toll-free from the airport once you arrive, and then drops you off in many cases right at your hotel. Rates run at 20€ (approximately $25) for one person and 39€ ($48) for two (a full list of rates and quotes can be found on their website).
If you’d rather travel by bus, there are two main options. The first is “Cars Air France” which runs two bus lines from Orly into Paris (and another from Orly to CDG in case you have the unfortunate, but still possible, task of connecting through Paris from two separate airports). From Orly to Montparnasse there are coaches about every 30 minutes from 6:15AM to 11:15PM and costs 11.50€ ($14). The other line, which runs the same price, stops at Montparnasse, Invalides, and Étoile and runs every 30 minutes as well.
The other bus option is the Orlybus which connects Paris (from Denfert-Rochereau on metro lines 4 & 6 or RER B) to Orly running every 15-20 minutes for a 30 minute voyage. This bus will only cost you 6.40€, or about $7.90.
If traveling by train is more your thing there are, once again, two options. Unlike CDG, there are no trains that go directly to the terminals, but instead require a connection of some sort. For the RER B (marked blue on transport maps), take the ORLYVAL shuttle train from the airport to Antony where you can make the connection to the RER. This is by far the most expensive public transport option as it costs 7.40€ ($9.10) for the 8 minute ORLYVAL ride and then another 6.10€ ($7.50) for the 25 minute RER trip into Paris.
Taking the RER C is also a possibility. From the airport, public buses will take you to Pont de Rungis for 2.50€ ($3.08) and from there you can take the RER into the city for only 3.60€ ($4.43). Be careful, as the RER C has many different termini, so be sure to take a train that ends at either Pontoise, Versailles, or Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines. Although cheaper, this option is slightly more complicated.
To ensure your vacation gets off to a stress-free start, be sure to plan ahead and decide before you land how you’ll get from the airport into Paris!