All CUPA students receive a transportation pass that allows for unlimited use of the metro, bus, trams, and suburban trains in Paris and Île-de-France. You will receive the “Carte Imagine R” on the first day of Orientation.

Paris has an excellent public transportation system, run by the RATP. Below will find detailed information about the different Parisian means of transportation.


The first trains are at 5:30 a.m. and the last train leaves from each extremity (first stop of a line in any given direction) at about 12:30 a.m. (about 1:30 a.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and holiday eves). 14 metro lines crisscross Paris, making it the fastest way to get from one place to another. Metro lines are known by number (i.e. Ligne 1) and sometimes by the first and last stops on the line (i.e. “Château de Vincennes – La Défense”). Check your metro map to see on which line your destination is situated (eg. Vavin is on the line 4). If you have to change lines to get where you’re going, you need to do it at a station which is common to both lines (correspondance) and which is indicated on the quai. Upon arriving at your stop, check the map of the neighborhood (usually found in the center of the quai) to find the exit closest to your final destination. (Exit signs are blue – Sortie).


Don’t hesitate to take the bus! It is slower than the metro but a great way to see Paris. At each bus stop there is information posted on the lines available, the timetables, and the itineraries of each line, as well as a map of the neighborhood. The buses that stop near CUPA include the 38, 58, 68, 82, 83, and 91.


Noctilien is a bus service that operates from 12:30 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. when other means of public transportation are closed. There are 47 lines that go all around Paris and its suburbs. Look for the “Noctilien” sign on regular bus stops. Your Carte Imagine R is valid on the Noctilien. Please note that the night buses and the day buses follow different routes!


The RER is an express rail network that links suburbs to the center of Paris. It is also a quick and easy way to get from one place to another within Paris. Your Carte Imagine R is valid on the RER and you can switch from the Metro to the RER at stations marked with the sign Correspondance.


The Transilien is the SNCF commuter rail network that also links suburbs to the center of Paris but unlike the RER it does not travel within Paris. There are 8 lines (H,J,K,L,N,P,R,U) which leave from Paris major railway stations (St-Lazare, Montparnasse, Gare de Lyon, Gare du Nord) with the exception of the U line. You can take those lines to visit some nice places in the suburbs of Paris (i.e. Fontainebleau Palace with the R line).

For more information about lines and stations you can visit this website :


Vélib’ is a bike rental service, sponsored by the city of Paris, that is widely available to residents and visitors. To subscribe, you can go online and pay with a credit card. A basic subscription (V-PLUS) for anyone under 26 years of age costs 37,20 € for the year or 3,10 € per month. This includes unlimited use of the Velib’ non-electric bikes for every ride under 30 minutes. If a ride exceeds the first free 30 minutes, each additional half-hour costs 1 € on top of your monthly subscription.

Be careful, the “V-PLUS” option is a one year subscription : don’t forget to cancel it at least 1 month before your departure to avoid paying the remaining months. Otherwise you can take the “V-LIBRE” option which is totally free and allows you to pay for your trips individually.

More info on

If you do not wish to use Velib’ it is still possible to rent a bike by more traditional means – or buy a used one. Renting a bike for the day will cost about 15-20 €. You will need to leave a security deposit (caution) and/or some kind of identity papers.

You can also rent bikes in the Bois de Boulogne, either near the entrance to the Jardin d’Acclimatation or by the Lac Inférieur. Bicycle rentals are also possible at many SNCF gares. If you plan on visiting another city in France by bike, you might want to call and reserve your rental beforehand.
For more information please visit

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