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LIVING IN FRANCE

The Paris Metro and train disruptions to look out for this summer

Every summer Paris transport authorities take advantage of lower passenger numbers to do works on the city's Metro and train routes that require closing lines or stations. Here's the programme of works for summer 2020.

The Paris Metro and train disruptions to look out for this summer
Some Metro stations will close this summer. Photo: AFP

The SNCF and RATP networks usually benefit from the summer slump in the number of daily commuters improve rail lines before September.

That means that, over the course of July and August, some Metro and RER lines will reduce their services and some stations will be partially or completely closed.

 

An up-to-date schedule showing its transport interruptions on the RATP website, link here, but here's a quick overview of this summer's planned works.

RER

The RER B line, which connects Paris’ two airports, will be running on limited services this summer, reducing the total number of trains departing from Gare du Nord by a third and stopping its service from Gare du Nord to Charles de Gaulle at 10pm. On the southern line of the RER B the stops Laplace, Croix de Berny and Robinson will shut completely from August 12th to August 16th.

On RER A, trains will stop running between Auber (centre of Paris) and Vincennes (east of Paris) in the evenings and on weekends and will not run at all between August 8th and 14th. The line will see disruptions on the western part too, with no trains running between Auber and Nanterre-Université or Cergy et Poissy from August 17th to 21th.

 

As for the RER C, its services will be severely halted this summer (again). As of July 15th, there are no trains running between Gare d'Austerlitz (centre east of the capital)  and Javel (western edge of the capital). This includes the much-frequented station St Michel Notre Dame, which is the station just next to the Notre Dame cathedral.

As an alternative to the RER C, Metro line 10 will be running an increased service and together with buses 63 and 30.

RER D will see only minor disruptions, with some stations on the southern part of the line (the branch between Corbeil-Essonnes and Juvisy) closing down during off-peak hours between July 27th and August 14th. 

Metro

The Paris Metro will also be subject to works, but there will be fewer interruptions than on the RER lines.

Stations on Line 6 will close down between Trocadéro and Charles-de-Gaulle-Etoile from July 25th to August 14th. There will be additional buses on routes 22 and 30. 

Line 4, which is in the process of becoming automated, will be closed on Sundays and in the evenings, all through the summer.

On Line 11, the station Belleville closed down on July 7th and reopens on August 30th (although line 2 will keep its services on that stop).

 

Trams

Tram services will run largely as normal, although a couple of stops on the T1, T3b and T6 will be closed for a few days in July and August.

The disruption to T2 however will be more severe, with the line shut completely between Puteaux and Charlebourg between July 25th and August 12th. That includes the busy La Défense stop. 

Cycling

If you’re looking for a quick way to get from A to B, don’t forget about the bicycle. Cycling in Paris is getting increasingly easy as the City of Paris has spent the last months extending cycling lanes and even closing down some streets to make them car-free.

 

Turning Paris into a bicycle-friendly city was the core of Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s (Socialist Party) political project from the outset, but her team massively ramped up their efforts over the past six months – first when the mass-strikes brought public transportation to a virtual standstill in December and January, and now with the coronavirus pandemic making crammed Metro lines a potential health risk.

The City has also improved its public cycle service Vélib' to ensure that as many as possible in the capital have access to a bicycle.

This has lead to a surge in the number of new cyclists in Paris.

 

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LIVING IN FRANCE

What changes in France in July 2022

Summer's here and the time is right for national celebrations, traffic jams, strikes, Paris beaches, and ... changing the rules for new boilers.

What changes in France in July 2022

Summer holidays

The holiday season in France officially begins on Thursday, July 7th, as this is the date when school’s out for the summer. The weekend immediately after the end of the school year is expected to be a busy one on the roads and the railways as families start heading off on vacation.

READ ALSO 8 things to know about driving in France this summer

Strikes

But it wouldn’t really be summer in France without a few strikes – airport employees at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports will walk out on July 1st, while SNCF rail staff will strike on July 6th. Meanwhile Ryanair employees at Paris, Marseille and Toulouse airports will strike on yet-to-be-confirmed dates in July.

READ ALSO How strikes and staff shortages will affect summer in France

Parliamentary fireworks?

Prime minister Elisabeth Borne will present the government’s new programme in parliament on July 5th – this is expected to be a tricky day for the Macron government, not only does it not have the parliamentary majority that it needs to pass legislation like the new package of financial aid to help householders deal with the cost-of-living crisis, but opposition parties have indicated that they will table a motion of no confidence against Borne.

Parliament usually breaks for the summer at the end of July, but a special extended session to allow legislation to be passed means that MPs won’t get to go on holiday until at least August 9th. 

Fête nationale

July 14th is a public holiday in France, commemorating the storming of the Bastille which was the symbolic start of the French Revolution. As usual, towns and cities will host parades and fireworks – with the biggest military parade taking place on the Champs-Elysées in Paris – and many stores will remain closed.

As the national holiday falls on a Thursday this year, many French workers will take the opportunity to faire le pont.

Festival season really kicks in

You know summer’s here when France gets festival fever, with events in towns and cities across the country. You can find our pick of the summer celebrations here.

Paris Plages

The capital’s popular urban beaches return on July 9th on the banks of the Seine and beside the Bassin de la Villette in northern Paris, bringing taste of the seaside to the capital with swimming spots, desk chairs, beach games and entertainment.  

Summer sales end 

Summer sales across most of the country end on July 19th – unless you live in Alpes-Maritimes, when they run from July 6th to August 2nd, or the island of Corsica (July 13th to August 9th).

Tour de France

The Tour de France cycle race sets off on July 1st from Copenhagen and finishes up on the Champs-Elysée in Paris on July 24th.

New boilers

From July 1st, 2022, new equipment installed for heating or hot water in residential or professional buildings, must comply with a greenhouse gas emissions ceiling of 300 gCO2eq/KWh PCI. 

That’s a technical way of saying oil or coal-fired boilers can no longer be installed. Nor can any other type of boiler that exceeds the ceiling.

As per a decree published in the Journal Officiel in January, existing appliances can continue to be used, maintained and repaired, but financial aid of up to €11,000 is planned to encourage their replacement. 

Bike helmets

New standards for motorbike helmets come into effect from July 1st. Riders do not need to change their current helmets, but the “ECE 22.05” standard can no longer be issued – and all helmets sold must adhere to a new, more stringent “ECE 22.06” standards from July 2024

New cars

From July 6th new car models must be equipped with a black box that record driving parameters such as speed, acceleration or braking phases, wearing (or not) of a seat belt, indicator use, the force of the collision or engine speed, in case of accidents.

New cars II

From July 1st, the ecological bonus for anyone who buys an electric vehicle drops by €1,000, while rechargeable hybrids will be excluded from the aid system, “which will be reserved for electric vehicles whose CO2 emission rate is less than or equal to 20g/km”.

What’s in a name?

Historically, the French have been quite restrictive on the use of family names – remember the concern over the use of birth names on Covid vaccine documents? – but it becomes easier for an adult to choose to bear the name of his mother, his father, or both by a simple declaration to the civil status. All you have to do is declare your choice by form at the town hall of your home or place of birth.

Eco loans

In concert with the new boiler rules, a zero-interest loan of up to €30,000 to finance energy-saving renovations can be combined with MaPrimeRénov’, a subsidy for financing the same work, under certain conditions, from July 1st.

Rent rules

Non-professional private landlords advertising properties for rent must, from July 1st, include specific information about the property on the ad, including the size of the property in square metres, the area of town in which the property is in, the monthly rent and any supplements, whether the property is in a rent-control area, and the security deposit required. Further information, including the full list of requirements for any ad, is available here.

Perfume ban

More perfumes are to be added to a banned list for products used by children, such as soap-making kits, cosmetic sets, shampoos, or sweet-making games, or toys that have an aroma.

Atranol, chloroatranol (extracts of oak moss containing tannins), and methyl carbonate heptin, which smells like violets, will be banned from July 5th, because of their possible allergenic effects.

Furthermore, 71 new allergenic fragrances – including camphor, menthol, vanilin, eucalyptus spp. leaf oil, rose flower oil, lavendula officinalis, turpentine – will be added to the list of ingredients that must be clearly indicated on a toy or on an attached label.

Ticket resto limits

The increased ticket resto limit ended on June 30th, so from July 1st employees who receive the restaurant vouchers will once again be limited to spending €19 per day in restaurants, cafés and bars. The limit was increased to €38 during the pandemic, when workers were working from home.

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