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Where to Wee-Wee in Paris?

So, going to Paris in September. Staying a block south of Georges Pompidou Center. We want to be gone all day, but keep hearing that finding toilets in Paris is more than plain difficult. In your experience, are there any businesses/places which have toilets a tourist can just pop into, go , and leave? (Such as Starbucks, metro stations, museums, etc). Thanks!

Posted by
3551 posts

Department stores and Mc Donalds are 2 that come to mind. All others you should buy a cafe in order to use the restrooom of the establishment.

Posted by
12040 posts

The larger museums all have public restrooms. There are a few pay toilets spread throughout the city. The only one I specifically remember was on the western edge of the Jardin Luxembourg.

Posted by
813 posts

We were just in Paris this past weekend with our kids who, like most kids, only know they need to go to the bathroom NOW. We were gone from 8:30A-8P sightseeing and never had a problem. The only area which could be an issue is around the Eiffel Tower, but we had lunch right before hand (cafe with restrooms), then used the restroom on the 1st level of the tower.

Posted by
23 posts

We just got back from Paris and didn't have an issue finding a toilet when we needed one. We did make it a habit to use one when we had one: passing by one in the museum, before we left our cafe, etc even if we didn't really need to go. Found that to be helpful.

Posted by
263 posts

Museums do have toilets, but remember most museums charge. There are pay toilets on city streets in several areas, in train stations, and even in Jardin Luxembourg. There is an underground toilet near the Eiffel Tower. I prefer getting a coffee and using the bathroom there, as many other posters suggested. To be honest, I did not think it was that difficult to find a toilet. However, it seems my memory says that the Quick and McDonald's required a receipt or something to use their bathrooms. And when you find one, have everyone use it!

Posted by
340 posts

Just wanted to add that you should try one of the "self cleaning" public toilets, if you come upon one, just for the experience. My kids, who are now adults, still talk about it. Seriously, the whole thing cleans itself when you exit - walls, toilet, floor - everything! Most are now free, but a few may still require .40 to operate. For a good description see europeforvisitors.com/paris/articles/paris-public-toilets.htm

Posted by
283 posts

I agree with everyone! In France, my husband and I have a rule we never igone: Don't pass any bathroom by. Use them when you see them! I actually find it much more difficult outside of Paris, when driving, etc. Gas stations do not have restrooms, but the large stores like Le Clerc have great free bathrooms!

Posted by
340 posts

Ed, I hadn't actually noticed John's link before, but I checked it out and it is a different article/review than the one I offered. Still, thanks for the alert - I'll read more carefully next time. Also, I just downloaded this new iPhone app that helps you find a WC closest to where you are. Pretty brilliant! It's creators are based in France so my guess is that Paris is well covered. I tried it here in Florida and it works. I am hoping to give it a whirl in Europe this summer. http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/restroom-bathroom-toilet-finder/id311896604?mt=8

Posted by
1170 posts

There is also the "Sit or Squat" restroom finder in the app store. Before leaving any public place, whether or not you really need to go or not, visit the restroom before you leave. I find McDonalds or Starbucks a very convenient place to "go".

Posted by
1068 posts

JC Decaux has pay toilets in lots of locations. I've always found them to be clean - far more "undisgusting" than you would imagine, and as of last November, I recall the price being just one Euro.

Posted by
921 posts

train stations have pay toilets that are constantly cleaned. We used the Gare de l'Est every day for the three weeks we were in and around Paris. Happy to pay, as I watched them cleaning non-stop. They'd get to one end, turn around and go back.

Posted by
96 posts

There is a reason for McDonalds in Europe: a toilet break and a chance to check your ITouch on their free (for 20 min.) Wifi. I buy a Perrier that we share and take care of all of our business at the same stop.

Posted by
1068 posts

@James: Hah! Pretty funny. I didn't think of it quite that way.... but you make a good point. Honestly, I mostly go to a pub or cafe and use the loo there after having a refreshing beverage... but the pay toilets are a godsend if you are desperate.

Posted by
1035 posts

Three things I appreciate when returning home: - Free bathroom use - Big 'ol glass of water in restaurants (usually without asking)
- Friendliness amongst strangers - starting with the "welcome home" from the immigration officer.

Posted by
228 posts

Okay, looks like the info about not finding a toilet when we're out and about is incorrect. Thanks for the info and let's go ahead and stop this thread from getting any longer. Cheers!

Posted by
1068 posts

@Michael 1 Really, you don't find "friendliness amongst strangers" in Paris? Wow. I get snarled at like crazy going though customs at the US/Canada border. Getting into and out of the USA to/from Europe isn't always a bed of roses. Another thought on wee-weeing.... some McDo loos are gruesome. The one on rue de Rivoli by the big H&M is almost always nasty.

Posted by
1098 posts

I'm with Kira, my first taste of unfriendliness on a Parisian vacation always begins as soon as my plane lands and I go through customs at O'Hare!

Posted by
63 posts

Of course every department store and museum, restaurant, etc has restrooms. But for a real experience, look for the automated, free restrooms. We found one outside the Ecole Militaire metro station near the Champs de Mars. When the previous occupant emerges there is a slight delay while the privy cleans itself. The floor and fixtures will be wet, but at least you'll know its clean when the green light comes on.

Posted by
79 posts

This is weird now that I'm home. Every public place, parks, museums, stations, restaurants, all have toilettes and W/C. We saw one every time we changed locations. I mean they are not in the middle of a crowded street, but then were in America do you see that? Spend your day normally, when you see a W/C, ask if anyone needs to visit. Move on and have fun!

Posted by
79 posts

Starbucks gave you a code to open the door. Every museum had several bathrooms, Eiffel had one on each level I think. But the large one is under the East tower. Only once did we pay .50 euro, and it was at the train station I think.