Navigo is a transport smartcard that's used in buses, the metro, the regional RER train and Transilien (but not on the fast TGV trains). It's easy to use since it eliminates all the paper tickets, and it lets you freely move around on public transport in Paris for a day, a week or a month.
Navigo has a few options that affect the price. There are three types of Navigo: one-day, week, and month.
Also read the article How to save money on public transport in Paris
The card itself costs 5 Euros, and you can buy it at any metro or RER station as well as the Orly and Charles de Gaulle airports.
For a week's use, you have to pay an additional 22.80 Euros, which covers all rides in 5 Paris zones, including the Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports (only the Orlybus), Versailles, Fontainebleau, and Disneyland. It does not work to get to or from Beauvais airport or in other parts of France.
The weeklong Navigo works from midnight on Monday to 11:59 on Sunday. You can buy them up to midnight on Thursday, after which the next week starts being sold on Friday morning.
The price for the month ticket is 75.20 Euros in addition to the 5 for the card, and covers the same territory as the week-long ticket from the 1st to the last of the month. They are sold starting on the 20th of the month. For example, on December 20, you can buy a ticket for January.
The 1-day pass (Mobilis) costs 17.80 Euros for the same zones, or from 7.50 Euros for fewer zones. Don’t forget that the price depends on the chosen territory.
Who can use Navigo?
Some tourists think that Navigo is just for French citizens, but that's not true. Anyone can buy it. They're sold in almost all ticket booths in the metro, RER and Transilien stations. Remember that you'll need a 2.5 x 3 cm photo. It's better to have it made in advance; otherwise, using the special photobooth nearby will cost 5 Euros for 4 pictures. You also have to put down your name.
The following instructions explain how to fill out Navigo on a machine.
Choose your language and then "fill out Navigo" — Navigo pass options.
Choose the month or weeklong duration.
Here's where you'll place your Navigo card on the turnstile.
When is Navigo worth it?
Is it worth buying Navigo? It depends on when you'll be in Paris, where you'll be staying, and the length of your visit. Of course, the latter is the biggest factor. The month Navigo is good if you're planning on being in Paris for at least three weeks in one calendar month and will use the metro or bus more than twice a day.
Buying the week ticket will save you money if you land on Monday and plan to actively move around for the week. If you're landing in Paris in the middle of the week, it's unlikely that Navigo is worth it since you can only use it until Sunday. If that's the case, it's worth considering buying carnet (10 paper tickets) for 16 Euros.
While weighing your options, keep in mind where you'll be staying. If you're staying in the city center, you'll see all the main sights with minimal use of the public transport. In that case, there's no point in buying Navigo.
Navigo is good for those who'll be staying in a suburb of Paris. If Disneyland is a big part of your trip, for example, Navigo will definitely save you money.
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