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Understanding the Overhead Panel on the Platform

Each line has a separate platform for each direction. Be sure the platform you are on is for the correct line and that the train is headed in the right direction, indicated by the name of the station at the end of the line.

Getting on the RER

One important thing to note: the doors of the RER train do not open on their own. They need to be opened manually. You must press a button on the door handle near the middle of the double doors (unless someone pushes the button first). They do, however, close automatically.

Note: The mayhem may be a bit disconcerting, but rush hour in Paris is no different than in any other major city. There are too many people, all of whom want to get to their destination as quickly as possible.

Riding the RER

The RER is similar to other public transportation systems. Seats are not reserved; first come, first served. If no seats are available when you board, then hold on to one of the secure poles near the doors.

Note: During rush hour, the trains are likely to be very full. You may find yourself pressed up tight against other passengers. That’s just the reality of using public transportation in a busy city.

Arriving at your Station

As the train pulls into each station, you will be able to read the signs on the wall that give the station name. Move toward the door when you see your station.

Exiting the RER

When you have reached your destination on the RER, follow the signs that say Sortie, which is French for "exit." At the larger stations, you may see multiple Sortie signs along with street names. Just follow the one for the street you want.

Using the Area Maps

Exit the train at your RER station. To get your bearings, look for the posted Plan du Quartier, which is French for "neighborhood map."

Arriving at Your Destination

Once you have chosen the RER exit that you want, you can either take an escalator or climb stairs to get to street level. You’ve arrived!