The RER train goes from Charles de Gaulle right into central Paris.
You have several choices for getting from Charles de Gaulle to Paris, all of which we describe below. These are:
1. Take the RER train
€9.25 per person, 35-50 minutes.
2. Take a bus
RoissyBus (€10 per person, 45-60 minutes) or Air France bus (€17, 45-50 minutes).
3. Take a taxi
At least €50, about 1 hour.
4. Minibus service
€36 for two people, about 1 hour.
Note: This information also works well in reverse. We could have also called this article “Getting from Paris to Charles de Gaulle”!
1. The RER train to Paris
The RER is the regional rail system linking the suburbs to the Paris Metro. Happily, the RER B line also goes directly from Charles de Gaulle to central Paris. From there, they can transfer for free to the Paris Metro system.
Trains run every 10-15 minutes from Charles de Gaulle into Paris, from 5 a.m. - 11 p.m.
Airport RER Stations
Charles de Gaulle has two RER stations, “Aéroport Charles de Gaulle 1” (serving Terminals 1 and 3) and “Aéroport Charles de Gaulle 2 - TGV” (serving terminal 2 ABCDEFG). To reach the stations, simply follow the signs and get walking!
Note that Terminal 2G is linked to terminal 2C by a free shuttle bus that takes about 15 minutes.
Once at the RER station, buy a ticket for a ride to the center of Paris from one of the ticket machines. A one-way ticket costs €9.25 for adults (€6.50 for children) and will cover the transfer from the RER to Paris’ Metro system.
The ticket machines may give you a hard time if you try to pay with an American credit card, so bringing along some euros will make things easier. (Read more about that this in our article on using an American credit card in Paris.)
Important: Hold onto your RER ticket. You’ll need it to exit the RER system and to gain entry to the Metro. Furthermore, hold onto it in the Metro, as well, as ticket inspectors may ask at any time to see it.
Local and express trains
You’ll notice that there are two different RER B trains serving the airport—a local and an express train that makes fewer stops. We suggest that you take a “Paris direct” train, which runs about 35 minutes to central Paris. Hopping on a local train will add at least 15 minutes to your journey.
After making stops in Paris’ northern suburbs, the RER B makes the following stops in central Paris, all of which allow free transfers to the Metro: Gare du Nord, Chatelet Les Halles, St-Michel-Notre-Dame and Denfert-Rochereau.
More information: Read this page on the RATP’s Web site.
Reverse: Paris to Charles de Gaulle
To get to Charles de Gaulle, take the Metro to the RER line B, direction Roissy/Charles de Gaulle. Sometimes it is not easy to recognize which RER trains go to the airport and which turn off towards another destination. If unsure, ask somebody at the station which train is correct.
RoissyBus tickets cost only €10.
2. Buses from Charles de Gaulle
To get to Paris from Charles de Gaulle by bus, you can take either a “RoissyBus” operated by the city (“RATP”) or the buses operated by Air France (which, by the way, are open to passengers on any airline).
In either case, after picking up your luggage at Charles de Gaulle and going through customs, follow the signs to the RoissyBus or Air France bus stops and purchase a ticket at the stand or from the bus driver.
RoissyBus to Paris
Follow signs in all three of Charles de Gaulle’s terminals to the nearest RoissyBus stop, which include Terminals 2A, 2C, 2E-F, 2D, 2B, 1 and 3. (Terminal 2G passengers can take the free N2 shuttle to get to Terminals 2C, 2D, 2E, 2F and the SNCF station.)
From here, the RoissyBus will shuttle you directly to its stop at Place de l’Opéra, at the corner of rue Auber and rue Scribe, adjacent to the American Express office.
The trip takes 45-60 minutes, and buses depart from the airport every 15 minutes from 6 a.m. through 11 p.m. The bus costs €10 for a one-way journey.
More information: Read this page on the RATP’s Web site..
Air France bus to Paris
Air France runs several bus services between Charles de Gaulle and Paris. We’re primarily interested in two of these, the green line “2” and yellow line “4,” which serve different destinations in central Paris.
Both buses depart from Terminals 1 & 2. Note that Terminal 3 passengers should take the CDGVAL train to Terminal 2.
Green line 2
Stops at Porte Maillot and Arc de Triomphe (Place de l’Etoile) and runs every 30 minutes from 5:45 a.m. until 11 p.m. A one-way journey takes about 45 minutes and costs €17 or €8.50 for children, and a round-trip ticket costs €29.
Yellow line 4
Runs every 30 minutes between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. and stops at Gare Montparnasse and Gare de Lyon. It costs €17 for a one-way adult journey, or €8.50 for a child; a round-trip ticket costs €29. The journey takes approximately 50 minutes.
For more information visit this page on the Charles de Gaulle Web site.
3. Taxis from Charles de Gaulle
Taxis aren’t cheap or necessarily the fastest way into town, but they can be an affordable and convenient option if you’re traveling with a group.
A taxi from Charles de Gaulle into Paris will cost you at least €50, and possibly much more, depending on your destination. Allow about an hour to make the trip.
Taxi stands are located throughout the airport. Simply follow the signs. Remember that you’ll pay extra for each piece of luggage. The driver will also expect a tip.
4. Paris Blue Minibus service
A sort of “hybrid” option for getting into town from Charles de Gaulle is the Paris Blue minibus. The service must be booked 24-hours in advance through their Web site.
Tickets for the ride are more cost-effective for larger groups. One person: €26, Two people: €38, Three people: €54, Four people: €68.
There is no charge for luggage and the bus will drop you off directly at your preferred destination.
Other Airports: Orly and Beauvais
For information about Orly and Beauvais airports, please see "Getting into Paris."
About the author: Tom Meyers is the Editor in Chief of EuroCheapo.com.