Taxis can be found at any hour, but at weekends it can be a little difficult to find any taxis for hire. Free taxis have a large white light and engaged taxis have an orange light below.
There are three tariffs, one is the 'A' the cheaper one between 6 and 9 euros, the 'B' a little more expensive, and the most expensive is the 'C' to go to airports at night for example, or to go outside Paris.
The minimum taxi ride costs about 6 euros.
Three taxi companies are:
« These include Alpha Taxis (tel: (01) 4585 8585)
« Taxis Bleus (tel: (0891) 701 010)
« Taxis G7 (tel: (01) 4739 4739).
Buses are easy to find, and the system is very easy to use. There is a list at every bus station that details the buses that stop there, and the bus route maps and times are also displayed there.
Most buses are in service from Monday to Saturday and until midnight, but only some of them are in service on Sundays or on festive days. There are some others that are in operation all night, and they are called 'Noctambus' and have 18 routes. These buses require separate tickets, which cost 2.40 euros approx. If you want, you can buy weekly or monthly travel passes and children's tickets are cheaper.
The Métro and RER
There are 14 different lines available if you want to travel by métro. All the lines are colour-coded to show the difference between them and to make easy for users to choose the right one. Maps can be found at the métro stations or in the tourist offices. The métros's schedule is from 05:00a.m to 00:30a.m. Some time ago the metro line 14, Météor was opened going from Gare St-Lazare to the Bibliothèque François Mitterrand.
To use the RER (Réseau Express Régional), the five lines are designated by letters, A, B, C, D and E, and are available from 05:00a.m to 01:10a.m, being faster than the normal metro.
In Paris the minimum age for hiring a car is between 21 and 25, and you will probably be asked to pay for the hire with a credit card. It is also necessary to have a national driving license for at least one year. Some of the main companies are:
« Europcar (tel: (01) 3044 9384; website: www.europcar.fr)
« Budget (tel: (01) 4884 6029; website: www.budget.com)
« Avis (tel: (08) 2002 4034 or (01) 4418 1054; website: www.avis.fr)