Two airports serve the majority of commercial jet service in Paris; Charles de Gaulle (CDG) and Orly (ORY). Both airports are equipped with facilities for the disabled and persons in wheelchairs.
Paris-Charles de Gaulle (CDG)
Also known as Roissy, Paris-Charles de Gaulle is the city’s largest international airport and is served by many of the world’s largest airlines. It is the 8th busiest airport by passenger traffic in the world and the 2nd largest in Europe. The airport has three terminals, 1, 2 and 3, with terminal 2 being the largest with 7 individual wings lettered A through G.
For passengers departing from CDG, it is possible to gate-check your wheelchair, no matter what excuses your airline’s staff may offer. Stand firm and you will be able to take your wheelchair, manual OR powered, to the gate and aircraft door. I have personally tested this more than 20 times, as recently as June 2016.
The airport terminals themselves are well configured for disabled travelers, with accessible restroom facilities throughout. For more information concerning the accessibility of the Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport, visit www.aeroportsdeparis.fr.
Transportation to/from the Airports
Several wheelchair accessible transportation options are available to travel from the airports into the city. The least expensive is the RER Inter-urban trains. Advance reservations are recommended, and can be made via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Service from both airports is available to the primary international station in Paris, Gare du Nord, along with multiple others in between. From Charles de Gaulle, take the CDG VAL shuttle train from terminal 1 or 2 and connect to the RER B train. From Orly Airport, take the Orlyval shuttle train to Antony station and connect to the RER B.
The city-operated RoissyBus from CDG is NOT wheelchair accessible. The OrlyBUS from ORY is wheelchair accessible and offers service to multiple points downtown. More information on this service is available at www.ratp.fr. Fares for the OrlyBus are € 8,50 each way.
The Les Cars Air France bus offers service from both CDG and ORY to downtown Paris. Not all buses are wheelchair accessible and should be reserved in advance. The following routes are offered:
- Route 1 – Orly Airport to Arc de Triomphe: € 12,50
- Route 2 – CDG Airport to Arc de Triomphe: € 17,00
- Route 3 – CDG Airport to Orly Airport: € 21,00
- Route 4 – CDG to Paris Gare Montparnasse: € 17,50
A final option are wheelchair accessible taxis from the Taxis G7 Horizon fleet. A taxi from CDG to the Arc de Triomphe, for example, would carry a fare of approximately 50 to 60 Euros. Fares will of course vary based upon time of day and traffic.
Your Rights and Check-in
If you have arrived to Paris on a direct flight from an airport in the United States or were a passenger on a U.S. carrier (American, Delta or United), file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Transportation for a violation of your rights under the ACAA if you have any problems or are made to wait more than 30 minutes for the return of your mobility equipment.
All passengers, especially disabled travelers, should arrive at the airport for check-in two hours prior to the departure of their flight. If you will require a loaner wheelchair to traverse the airport and terminal or need another type of disability assistance, contact your airline directly. For more information, or to read frequently asked questions about air travel with a mobility disability, consult the How-To/FAQ on the topic.