Buy your tickets in advance so you can skip the line!
This is a list of all the places where I buy tickets online so I can skip the line. I still have to go through the security line, but everybody has to do that. Please note that the lines for timed ticket holders are always the shortest other than visiting with a guide-conférencier such as Elyse on our tours.
So here’s my advice: bite the bullet and buy timed advance tickets! It will force you to plan your days out, but isn’t that why you came to this site to begin with?
Paris: Skipping the Line in Paris
Join Us in France has NO commercial relationship with these sites: I recommend them because I use them and they’re not places where they sell fake tickets.
To climb the Tower at Notre Dame de Paris (included in the Paris Museum Pass if you’re going to get that).
Tickets to visit the Sainte Chapelle (included in the Paris Museum Pass)
Tickets to visit the Catacombs (NOT included in the Paris Museum Pass)
Tickets to visit the Louvre (included in the Paris Museum Pass)
Tickets to the Eiffel Tower (lots of possibilities here, NOT included in the Paris Museum Pass)
Paris Museum Pass
I love the convenience of the Paris Museum Pass. If you are going to visit several museums, it’s well worth it. You’ll get priority access and you can leave the museum and come back any time. It does NOT include the Eiffel Tower or the Catacombs. I get one every time I go to Paris.
You can buy it online before your trip or you can simply buy it at one of the less busy museums in central Paris (Conciergerie or Cluny for example) where the line to get in is almost always short. Don’t buy it at the Louvre or the Orsay, lines just to get the pass are long there!
Various Event Tickets
Want to see what all is available around a certain date? Look at France Billet, the site is only partially translated into English, but it’s such a good resource. In the same vein, you can also use FNAC, either online or in person when you get to Paris. Some things will be sold out if you wait until you can go to a FNAC store, but it’s better than not planning at all.
Keep in mind that getting the ticket is only one part of the equation. Many venues must also implement crowd control measures. They can’t let 1000 people go up the stairs at Notre Dame all at once because that would be dangerous. So, if a place has lots of stairs, narrow passages, or are very small, they will only let so many people in per hour. This is done for everybody’s safety.
Make It Real!
When you buy your tickets in advance, you are not certain you won’t have to line up at all, but at least you won’t have to line up just for tickets. Book your tickets, make it real! And listen to the episodes for the places you’re going to visit. Episodes are sure to get you excited to go!