Totally Frenched Out

From the blogger formerly known as Samdebretagne

Monday, November 16, 2009

I'm just going to throw out my little plug for Charles de Gaulles/Roissy's oft-forgotten sister airport, Orly. I've flown out of there several times in the past six months and it *almost* makes flying in France enjoyable. Unlike at Roissy, the terminals (of which there are two - West & South) are clean, modern and well-marked. They're small as well, meaning it's easy to get around. And for those of us in central/southern Paris, it's also cheaper (6.40€ vs. 8.50€) and faster (20min vs 40min) to get to.

Orly offers flights all over France and Europe (and some abroad as well). The fares are pretty competitive as well - I booked a month in advance, and it only cost me 10€ more to fly than it would've to take the train. Though to be fair, the train would've won by a long shot if I'd booked two months ahead of time. But flying cut about 3 hours off of my travel time, so I guess it depends on how much of a hurry you're in. Another positive is that you get to board directly and thus avoid needing to take a shuttle to get to your plane - which also means that you spend less time waiting around for your baggage after landing.

Just to give an example, this morning I checked in online before leaving my apartment at 7:10am. I got to the Airport at 7:40 and had checked my bags by 7:50, which left me just enough time to grab a quick breakfast before my 8:15am flight. Had I been leaving from CDG, I probably would've had to leave an hour earlier - you never know what's going on with the RER B or if you're going to get a slow or a fast train. And I don't know about you guys, but at that time of day, I can use any extra sleep I can get!



Blogger The Duchess said...

Flight from Montpellier to CDG, one way, 300+ euros, Montpellier to Orly, 70 euros! I've just booked a ticket for my dad and uncle for January. Only slight detail, they then have transfer to CDG, but with the transfer costing 45 euros, it's still well cheaper!

November 16, 2009 at 10:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for reminding me of the smaller Paris-region airport... I find myself needing to get to Manchester (by way of any northern England airport, preferably Liverpool) in late December but none of the budget airlines I've been looking at work with Orly... Do you happen to know of any airlines I might want to investigate?

November 16, 2009 at 11:23 PM  
Blogger wcs said...

I've only flown intra-europe once through CDG, but I've rarely had a bad experience at CDG on my international flights.

Just last week I arrived from the US, got off the plane, easy through passport control, my bags were among the first to come out, I was out of there and on the RER B in no time (I had my train ticket before I left).

I was in Paris Austerlitz exactly 2 hours after the plane landed. And that included the extra time on the RER due to the movement sociale.

On the other hand, I've never been through the Orly airport. Sounds like something to try!

November 17, 2009 at 8:08 AM  
Blogger Ksam said...

@The Duchess - wow, that is a big difference. How are they transferring between the two? With the Air France buses?

And Walt, that actually seems like a long time to me! If you'd flown into Orly, you probably could've cut that time in half. It'd be 25-30min to get to Denfert Rochereau, and then from there it's only 7 stops to Austerlitz (but you'd have to change lines once, which might be a pain if you've got lots of luggage). But as you can tell, I'm really not a huge fan of CDG - it's big and very poorly organized/sign-marked (though they have made an effort with the newer terminals).

November 17, 2009 at 8:20 AM  
Blogger Starman said...

I've flown into Orly Sud from Toulouse and it was most enjoyable. Add to that the fact that you can actually see la Tour Eiffel both beforeyou land and while you
re walking to the terminal, and it ranks right near the top for great airport experiences. Orly West wasn't so great, but you still save about €10 to €15 on taxi fare.

November 17, 2009 at 11:24 PM  
Blogger jonnifer said...

Terminal 1 at Roissy is laughable it's so poorly organized. I mean, laughable months later when you can appreciate the absurdity of it all. Terminal 2 is a breeze to fly from. Love it.

November 24, 2009 at 2:35 PM  

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