The opening ceremony of the 2024 Paris Olympics promises to be spectacular: On the glittering waters of the Seine, a flotilla of barges will carry about 10,000 athletes to the foot of the Eiffel Tower, as nearly half a million spectators line the four-mile route to cheer on the event of the century.
Good luck, though, getting any one of the 100,000 ticketed seats to be front and center at the party. Those are mostly sold out — and the few left cost an eye-popping 2,700 euros, about $2,930 each. Tickets to watch another popular Olympic event, 10-meter men’s platform diving, start at €875. Women’s artistic gymnastics finals, a perennial crowd pleaser: around €1,799.
Paris Olympics organizers set a lofty goal for what they have called the People’s Games, promising to make the world’s most iconic sporting event equitable and accessible.
But get ready to pay up.
Seven months before the Olympic torch casts a glow in the City of Light this summer, the cost of getting into the most in-demand sports competitions, not to mention the price of accommodations and transportation, has risen — sometimes by Olympian proportions.
Many hotels and rental apartments have doubled or tripled their typical summer rates (think an average of €1,000 a night instead of €300), and some have even quintupled them. Airfares are rising fast. The cost of a Paris Metro ticket is temporarily doubling. Even the Louvre Museum and Palace of Versailles have ratcheted up admission fees.
Still dreaming of making the Olympic rendezvous? Don’t be too discouraged if you haven’t booked yet. The Games, which run from July 26 to Aug. 11, still have some ticket deals for large-crowd competitions like soccer and basketball. Spots also remain available for the Paralympics, from Aug. 28 to Sept. 8. And some prices could start to come down closer to the Games.
Paris will be its own extraordinary attraction, transformed into a giant outdoor arena with competitions like break dancing at Place de la Concorde and beach volleyball at the Eiffel Tower. And President Emmanuel Macron will make cultural performances of all kinds free for two months in summer to fete the Olympic spirit.
Still, exactly how you experience the Games will depend on your budget. Here are some tips on what to expect.
Finding a place to stay
Paris is like a jewel box: dazzling but compact. With around 15 million visitors expected, and just around 85,000 guest rooms, hoteliers are taking full advantage of outsize demand. So…