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Driving in and around Paris

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Auckland Region...
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Driving in and around Paris

We are flying into Paris in late December and staying in Courbevoie for the entire time. What I would like to know is honestly what the driving conditions are like, we are considering hiring a car as we have young children who will get tired, so for some of our day trips it may be easier to have a car, but what I would like to know is what is the traffic light from the airport to Courbevoie, not having been to paris before are we likely to find our way around easily, We are happy to use buses/trains to get into paris itself, but ideally would prefer to drive from the airport to our hotel, just concerned about what the traffic is like, roads, etc as I have heard it can be a nightmare :)

Paris, France
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1. Re: Driving in and around Paris

If you don't already know the streets of Courbevoie, I expect that you will find it much more difficult to drive there than in Paris.

the big blue marble
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2. Re: Driving in and around Paris

I don't know what its like driving in NZ. I grew up following directions by the compass (ie, east, west, etc...) in France you drive by destination and in Paris its by quartier or landmarks. It took me a while to get used to it and I spent a lot of time getting lost until I did.

However, the biggest stress to driving in Paris is finding parking. There is little to no street parking and the lots are expensive.

The biggest annoyance is that many streets are narrow, so the are often blocked by drivers loading/unloading. It can be an exercise in frustration.

Val-de-Marne, France
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3. Re: Driving in and around Paris

As kerouac says, driving in the suburbs is a lot more confusing than driving in Paris. I live in an inner suburb and dont enjoy driving anywhere. It's also a huge waste of time. Even outside rush hour when traffic is smooth you just have to stop for traffic lights every 20 seconds.

And as phread says, directions will be based on destinations and in the suburbs it will be names of districts (former villages that make up each city). If by day trips you mean into Paris, there is no parking. You will once again spend a lot of time but also money looking for parking. On the street it's limited to two hours, beyond that you must find an underground car park. And probably far from attractions so involving more walking with the children.

In most inner suburbs, parking is not much easier.

Paris, France
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4. Re: Driving in and around Paris

I drive in and around Paris a lot, and I mean a lot, but if you are staying within the built-up area (Paris and suburbs) then a car is not a good way to get around. If arriving from a long haul flight as a family of 4 or more, bite the bullet and pay for a taxi. Cost from CDG to Courbevoie will be around 70-80€ I'd reckon.

Edited: 30 July 2014, 08:13
Tampa, Florida
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5. Re: Driving in and around Paris

don't drive in Paris if you can help it -- you'll spend as much time idling in traffic and trying to find a parking space as you will doing anything else.

6. Re: Driving in and around Paris

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