Local travel tips and French phrases to know while traveling


The 2024 Paris Olympics have made France Europe's most popular summer travel destination, inviting people to spend their holidays there. From July 26 to August 11, 2024, the City of Light will be bustling with athletes and tourists, making the summer in Paris a busy one. But before you fly to Paris this summer, you should know some important details that will make your travel in this part of Europe a smooth one.

Although crowds are expected this time of year, Paris is a city brimming with art, culture, history, natural beauty, and world-class shopping. From the iconic Champs-Élysées to the romantic Eiffel Tower and gourmet flavors of French cuisine, Paris has activities and sights worth putting at the top of your to-do list. Follow our guide to free things to do in Paris to make the most of your Paris adventure.

Strikes, monument closures and road closures are just some of the events you will face in Paris in the summer of 2024. Don't worry, despite these disruptions you can still easily get around the city and have a great holiday.

Paris summer 2024: what to know before going to the French capital

Paris tourist sites temporarily closed

Image courtesy of Paris Olympics

Several of Paris' iconic landmarks are being converted into sports arenas for the Olympics. If you attend the 2024 Olympics, you'll be able to see these landmarks, but not in their former glory. Tourists should check the list below and make note of the Paris landmarks that are temporarily closed to the public.

  • Place de la Concorde: One of the largest and most famous public squares will host BMX freestyle, skateboarding, breaking and 3X3 basketball.
  • Big palaceThis historic exhibition hall hosts Olympic events such as fencing and taekwondo.
  • The Esplanade of the Invalides: A popular sunbathing lawn along the Seine will be closed for archery.
  • Palace of VersaillesThe former residence of many legendary French kings will host the equestrian and modern pentathlon events.
  • Paris City HallThe marathon will start at the French City Hall.
  • Pont Alexandre IIILinking the Eiffel Tower to the Champs-Élysées, this beautiful bridge serves as the finish line for the individual bicycle time trial, swimming marathon, triathlon and paratriathlon.
  • Fields of MarsThe majestic lawn directly in front of the Eiffel Tower is called the Eiffel Tower Stadium and is used for beach volleyball and blind football competitions.
  • Trocadero SquareTrocadero Square, another beautiful garden known for its views of the Eiffel Tower, will be closed.

Travel NotesThe Eiffel Tower will close on 26 July 2024, but will remain open during the Games.

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Paris public transport strikes, closures and delays

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Road closures and strikes are expected in Paris and other parts of Europe over the summer, making it difficult to get around the city.

The union representing transport workers in Paris's public transport system, including the subway, trams and buses, has launched several strikes and is threatening to strike during the Olympics. The unions are demanding extra pay and support for work during the Olympics.

Additionally, some metro stations and tramways will be closed due to Paris Olympics operations, several bridges over the beautiful Seine will be closed, roads will be closed, and travel around the city will be difficult. River cruises will continue until seven days before the opening ceremony.

Paris metro stations temporarily closed:

  • Champs Elysées to Clemenceau
  • Tuileries
  • Concorde

Temporarily closed tram routes:

  • Port d'Ivry
  • Porte de Versailles
  • Collette Besson

Temporarily closed bridges:

  • Carousel Bridge
  • Part of the Iena Bridge
  • Bridges in Alma
  • Tournelle Bridge
  • Pon O Change
  • Concorde Bridge
  • Point Royal
  • Alcohol Bridge
  • Pont Alexandre III
  • Pont des Arts
  • New Bridge
  • Bridge of Austerlitz
  • Devillee Footbridge

During the Summer Olympics, a dedicated government website will provide real-time information on transport and traffic congestion, and Anticiper les Jeux will provide an interactive map showing road closures and public transport delays.

Beware of scams and pickpockets

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The city is notorious for pickpockets and scammers who take advantage of tourists' lack of sophistication to trick them out of their money and steal their wallets and phones. A common scam involves strangers slipping bracelets onto tourists' wrists and demanding a high price to force them into buying them. For more information about the scams you may encounter in Paris during the Summer Olympics, check out our guide to the most common scams in Europe.

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Basic French Phrases for Communication

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It's helpful to know some basic phrases in the language of the country you're traveling to. While many people in Paris speak English, the people you're trying to communicate with may not be fluent in English, so be sure to learn some useful French phrases to help you get around the city during the Summer Olympics.

Common French phrases to know:

  • Bonjour: Hello
  • good bye: Goodbye
  • please (formal)/please (Informal): Please
  • thank you: thank you.
  • It was nothing.: you're welcome.
  • yes: yes
  • Non: no
  • Do you speak English?: Do you speak English?
  • I don't speak French: I can't speak French.
  • sorryA: Sorry.
  • I lost my way: We lost.

Download these apps to explore the city easily

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Smartphones are modern-day guidebooks that store important information that will make your trip easier, and there are several apps designed to make it easier for tourists to explore France, and Paris in particular.

Some of the apps you can download include:

  • Citymapper: This mapping service app provides detailed information about the city's subways, trams, and buses.
  • Hello RATP: Paris' official public transport app. Buy tickets, view routes and more.
  • Doctor: You can access over 8,000 electric bikes through this rental app.
  • Wachijis: An offline app that offers guided tours of monuments and tourist attractions.
  • Air bat: This app gives you a tax refund on all purchases in Paris. (Tourists get a 20% tax refund on purchases in France.)
  • Google Translation: This app translates all French signs and boards into English.

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(Feature image credit: Catarina Belova/Shutterstock)

Related: Explore Paris at your own pace with a convenient car rental

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

– When is the best time to visit Paris?
The best times to visit Paris are from March to May and from September to October.

– What month is summer in Paris?
While European summer is generally thought of as from June to August, summer in Paris lasts from June to September.

– When will the Olympics take place in Paris?
The Summer Olympics will be held in Paris from July 26 to August 11, 2024.



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