Will I need to drive my own vehicle to conduct my everyday life (work/school/shopping) at my destination?
No. Public transportation is excellent in Paris and its suburbs. Metros (subways), buses and RER, a fast train that connects the Paris region to the heart of the capital, run from 5:30am to 12:30am.
How can I legally drive a vehicle in this city?
In order to drive in France, you need a valid driver's license and mandatory driver's insurance. If you are going to stay for more than one year, you may need to exchange your license for a French one.
The authorities will keep your original license, but will give it back to you at the end of your stay. You will also need to have the usual proof of your current address in France and your passport, with your
Carte de Séjour.. The same is required in order to purchase car insurance. Crown Paris can offer assistance in all administrative steps.
What side of the road do people drive on?
In France, people drive on the right-hand side of the road.
Describe typical public transportation an expat might use to get around the city.
Both subway and bus systems are superb - they can take you anywhere in the city in a matter of minutes.
Paris is equipped with special taxi and bus lanes, which prevent them from being stuck in dense traffic. The metro starts around 5:30am and runs until around 12:30am. Metros run every three minutes during rush hour and every seven minutes at night and during holidays. There is also a night bus system called Noctambus , which runs during the wee hours of the morning.
Could an expat also use public transportation to get out of the city—to surrounding towns, recreation areas or suburbs? If so, list options.
To get to the suburbs and surrounding towns, there is an extensive train system. Depending on the location, you can get there by regular SNCF train from one of the railway stations or gares, or by fast RER train, which runs throughout Paris and connects with the Metro system in places.
In regards to transportation, are there any safety issues I should be aware of?
Transportation is fairly safe in Paris. Just beware of pickpockets in certain areas, just like in any major city. Police surveillance is well organized, day and night, and it is common to see a guard with his dog, looking out for people's safety.
Where do I buy tickets/tokens/etc. for the major public transportation?
Metro and bus tickets can be purchased at Metro stations, bus stations and at cafés that carry the blue-green symbol that represents a mass transit ticket. At Metro stations, you can buy your tickets at a window or from a machine. Fares vary depending on how many tickets you buy or what period of time (e.g., weekly, monthly) your pass is valid for.
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.