Guest Notes for Episode 483: Paris Olympics 2024: Navigating the City of Light

Category: Paris

Paris Olympic Games 2024: Knowns and Unknowns


Walking – central Paris is only 10km/6 miles in diameter, some venues are a little or a lot outside of Paris

Public Transportation

Metro / subway – it will be very crowded, some stations closed for security next to venues; some lines to venues will be even more crowded

Metro workers to test automatic translation units for communication, in process

Key metro line 14 to athlete’s village undergoing major upgrade; major metro upgrade in suburban areas over next few years

Buses – subject to surface gridlock, some dedicated bus lanes, some dedicated buses to certain venues

Trams – goes around the city, limited in number and frequency,

Bike rental – city of Paris system Velib, adding 10,000 more bikes; manual & electric; must be retrieved and returned to special locking stations; not intuitive system, cheapest, dedicated phone app

Lots of floating electric rental bike fleets: (Lime, Dott, Tier, Zoov)

Olympiades bike paths 30miles/55km to be added to venues; +25km in St.Denis

Adding 3000 bike parking places at Stade de France

Adding 10,000 bike racks outside of Rolan Garros, Eiffel Tower/Champs de Mars

Electric scooter rentals – banished from Paris

Electric Moped (vespa size) – CityScoot, Cooltra, YEGO – need to check driver’s license, insurance, helmet requirements.

Taxis/Uber – subject to surface gridlock; Uber works in Paris; G7 has dedicated app for taxis, tip: from the airport (CDG) there is a flat taxi rate from the official taxi stand taxis (55-60€)

Public Transportation Rates/Payment/Apps

Easy Navigo card 2€ plus tickets, can buy on machine at station or on phone with Bonjour RATP app; limited to central Paris (zone 1-2)

Navigo Découvert card 5€ plus tickets for any/all zones 1-5

Recommend a visa/mastercard with touch

Apps recommended:  Bonjour RATP (English version); Citymapper – both give you bike options; need internet connection to get real time alerts;  currently lots of metro problems due to people leaving / forgetting packages

Stay alert for pickpockets, not violent, but fast


Stay as near as possible to the venue where you have tickets

Big hike in hotel tax effective 01jan2024; 11.75€ for five star hotel

Personal apartment rentals (Airbnb, +), the rules: only possible if you are the owner; if sublet must have owners written permission and rate limited to existing rental rate paid; must register with City of Paris and receive a registration number, otherwise subject o fines of 75,000€ and/or 5 years prison; owner must have insurance for seasonal renters

Check for air conditioning at lodging, most private residences do not have air conditioning, maybe a portable unit

Opening cermony along the Seine, 27 july 2024

Number of spectators reduced from 600,000 to 300,000. Sold 100,000 tickets for prime spots; 200,000 ticket to be release for free sometime in the future, no information available; security clearance will be required but no information yet

10,000 athelets, 60 boats from gare Austerliz / Jardin des Plantes to Eiffel Tower/Trocadero, 6km

80 giant screens to be available to watch ceremony

Event designed by Thomas Jolly (Starmania) with holograms, lasers, floating things; no rehearsal on the Seine possible


Over 35,000 security force

Also using cameras and drones with AI to monitor for suspicious activities

Security zones setup in which only ticketed spectators, workers, emergency services, local residents will be allowed; security plan not released yet

Emergency alert system currently being tested

The Seine & marathon swimming 10km

50,000 m3 resevoir at Austerliz for overflow rain/swewage, with treatment plant

Monitoring bacterial level continually

Paris plans to open areas for swimming for general public in 2025

The Weather

Events may be rescheduled if temperatures are too hot

Olympic Village is built without air conditioning, using geothermal cooling, shades, blinds to moderate temperature to be less than 6C of outside temperature; July 2019 high of 42.6C/108.7F worst case scenario; discussion of portable air considtioner units

Advice bring cool clothes, hats, water

Most drinks served without ice, maybe one or two small ice cubes

Iced coffee and iced tea mostly in cans


Potential strkes by police/security

Potental stricket by public transportation


July/August are traditional vacation months for the French and many other Europeans

Paris is generally very empty in residental areas

Some stores closed, minimal service levels

Red triangle mascots – the Phryges

The Phryges are the official mascots of Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.[1] They are two anthropomorphic Phrygian caps that are a symbol of France.

The Phrygian cap, a soft, generally red hat, was worn by freed slaves in Phrygia, an ancient Greek kingdom in what is now Turkey. At the time of the French Revolution, the Phrygian cap was worn as a symbol of freedom. Marianne, the national personification of France and basis of the Paris 2024 emblem, is often depicted wearing a Phrygian cap.[2]

Olympic Merchandise

Check Decathlon – best prices

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Category: Paris