Metros in France: The Toulouse Metro

Toulouse is a city located in the Midi-Pyrenees region, and is the capital of the Haute-Garonne department, France. This city is also known as Pink City, since most of its buildings are constructed with pink bricks. Toulouse has famous rugby players. With a population of over 1.2 million people, Toulouse is the fourth most populated city in France. The city's airport is Toulouse-Blagnac Airport.

Travelling within the city by car is not recommended due to the difficulty of finding parking spots and also due to the high levels of traffic. Public bicycles, which belong to Vélôtoulouse, are available for free for half an hour. Most of Toulouse's public transportation is managed by a company known as Tisséo. Some of the public transportation is managed by SNCF. The public transportation consists of buses, tramways and trains. Some of the city's buses work every day. The tramway is divided into two lines. The last means of transportation managed by Tisséo is the metro.

History

The government of Toulouse planned to build a new transportation service for the city. Although the government originally wanted to build a new tram, they favored the construction of a metro service. They compared the Hanover Metro with the Lille Metro, and decided build a metro like the one in Lille because it uses automatic trains. The government decided to build the new metro on July 9th, 1985. The Toulouse Metro officially inaugurated on June 26th, 1993, with the opening of lines A and B. The inauguration of the metro made the government decide to change the layout of the bus network.

In 1997, the Toulouse government made plans to expand both lines of the metro. The construction of new stations for both lines began on 2001. Line B's initial expansion was completed on June 30th, 2007. Another expansion for line B was planned in 2012, and began construction on 2014.

Lines and stations

The metro has 38 stations and two lines: lines A and B. Each line has the following stations:

Line A

Line A: This line has the following 18 stations: Mirail Basso-Cambo, Reynerie, Bellefontaine, Bagatelle, Mirail Université, Fontaine-Lestang, Mermoz, Patte-d'Oie, Arènes, Esquirol, Saint-Cyprien République, Jean-Jaurés, Capitole, Joliment, Marengo SNCF, Argoulets, Roseraie, Balma Gramont

Line B

Line B: This line has the following 20 stations: Borderouge, La Vache, Trois-Cocus, Minimes Claude-Nougaro, Barrière-de-Paris, Compans Caffarelli, Canal-du-Midi, Jean-Jaurès, Jeanne-d'Arc, Carmes, François-Verdier, Saint-Michel Marcel-Langer, Palais-de-Justice, Saint-Agne SNCF, Empalot, Rangueil, Saoizelong, Université-Paul-Sabatier, Faculté-de-Pharmacie, Ramonville

Metro Toulouse
Via Tisseo

Commuter trains

These commuter lines complete the transport system in the city of Toulouse, together with the T1 and bus lines.

  • Line C. Frequency of service: 15 minutes. Stations: Arènes, Le TOEC, Lardenne, Saint-Martin-du-Touch, Ramassiers, Colomiers
  • Line D. Stations: Toulouse-Matabiau, Saint-Agne, Portet-sur-Garonne, Muret

Tram

T1. The T1 line covers the route route Palais de Justice - Aéroconstellation. It has been operating since 2010. There are 24 stations over a distance of 14km, from, Toulouse to Beauzelle through Blagnac. Travel time is 45 minutes. In 2015 the branch that reaches the aeropuerrto of Toulouse was inaugurated. Stations: Arènes, Zénith, Cartoucherie, Casselardit, Purpan, Arènes-Romaines, Ancely, Servanty, Guyenne, Pasteur, Relais, Marronniers, Patinoire, Grand-Noble, Georges-Brassens, Lycée, Beauzelle, Garossos

Tram Toulouse
Via Tisseo

Connections

You can make a connection between lines A and B at Jean-Jaurès station. You can board up to four different vehicles using one ticket.  The metro can make connections to buses and trams belonging to Tisséo. However, you cannot use the ticket for the metro to board Tisséo's Airport Shuttle. The metro can make a connection among 84 regular buses. Another bus to which the metro makes a connection is Noctambus. The metro also makes connections with both lines of the tram. The metro can also make a connection to Transport on Demand (TAD), which is a transportation service with 9 lines, located at the outskirts of Toulouse. The final transportation service that makes a connection with the metro is the City Centre Shuttle.

Connection to the airport

Tisséo's Airport Shuttle offers rides to Tolouse-Blagnac Airport. This shuttle goes to the following metro stations: Jean-Jaurés station, Jeanne d'Arc station, and Matabiau station. The Airport Shuttle is available every 20 minutes at the airport. The tickets' prices to board the Airport Shuttle are the following: Single Airport Ticket = €8, Two Airport Trips = €15, and 6 Airport Trips = €35.

Schedule, calendar, and timetables

Both lines open at 5:15 am every day. However, both lines close at different times at different days. Lines A and B close at midnight from Monday to Thursday, while they close at 3:00 am on Fridays and Saturdays.

It takes 22 minutes and 30 seconds to travel to all of line A's stations. Similarly, it takes 26 minutes and 30 seconds to travel to all of line B's stations.

    The waiting times between each train are the following:
  •  1) During peak hours from Monday to Friday: one minute and 20 seconds.
  •  2) From 1:30 am until 2:15 am: 7 minutes.
  •  3) From 2:15 am until 3:00 am: 10 minutes.
  •  4) On Fridays and Saturdays, from 9:30 pm until 1:30 am: four minutes.
  •  5) From Mondays to Fridays, during off-hours: five minutes.
  •  6) When service starts: 9 minutes.
  •  7) From Monday to Friday, from 9:30 pm to 1:30 am: 7 minutes.
  •  8) On Sundays and holidays, during off-peak hours: 7 minutes.

Prices, tickets, and subscriptions

The card available for the metro is called the Pastel Card, which is required to buy any of the subscriptions. Tickets and subscriptions are divided into the following categories: For Everyone, People Under 26, Students 26-35, Seniors 65+, Groups, Large Families, Job Seekers, RSA Recipients, and People with Disabilities.

1) For everyone: 

    1.1) Tickets: they are divided into the following categories: 3-Day Ticket, 2-Ticket, Day Ticket, Evening Ticket, 10 Rides, Group Ticket, Two Rides for 1 Person, and One Ride.
  • 1.1.1) 3-Day Ticket (€10.50): Offers unlimited rides for three days. Valid until the stations close on the third day.
  • 1.1.2) 2-Day Ticket (€8.50): Offers unlimited rides for two days. Valid until the stations close on the second day.
  • 1.1.3) Day Ticket (€5.50): Offers unlimited rides for a day. Valid until the stations close.
  • 1.1.4) Evening Ticket (€3.10): Offers unlimited rides on all transportation services in the road network known as "Tisséo's Urban Network" from 7:00 pm until stations close.
  • 1.1.5) 10 Rides (€13.40): Offers 10 rides.
  • 1.1.6) Group Ticket (€5.50): Offers 12 rides for a day. A single ticket can be used by multiple people. This ticket is recommended if you travel with friends or family. 
  • 1.1.7) Two Rides for One Person: Offers two rides. This ticket can be only used by the buyer.
  • 1.1.8) One Ride (€1.60): Offers one ride.
    1.2) Subscriptions using the Pastel Card: They are divided into the following categories: Annual, 31 Days, 7 Days, 3-Day Pass, 2-Day Pass, Day Pass, Evening Pass, 10 Rides, Two Rides for One Person, and One Ride.
  • 1.2.1) Annual (€39 per month or €468 per year): Offers unlimited rides for one year. It can be paid with cash or be deducted monthly from your bank. If you choose to pay it with the monthly deduction, you need to contact e-agency. Otherwise, you need to pay at Tisséo's offices.
  • 1.2.2) 31 Days (€46.80): Offers unlimited rides for 31 days.
  • 1.2.3) 7 Days (€14.20): Offers unlimited rides for 7 days.
  • 1.2.4) 3-Day Pass (€10.50): Offers unlimited rides for three days.
  • 1.2.5) 2-Day Pass (€8.50): Offers unlimited rides for two days.
  • 1.2.6) Day Pass (€5.50): Offers unlimited rides for a day.
  • 1.2.7) Evening Pass (€3.10): Offers unlimited rides from 7:00 pm until service closes. Valid in Tisséo Urban Network.
  • 1.2.8) 10 Rides (€13.40): Offers 10 rides.
  • 1.2.9) Two Rides for One Person (€3.10): Offers two rides.
  • 1.2.10) One Ride (€1.60): Offers one ride.

2) People Under 26

Offers subscriptions to people for up to 25 years of age. It offers the following subscriptions: School, Four Years and Under, 10 Rides, 31 Days, and Annual.

  • 2.1) School (free): For students in schools and colleges in the region of Haute-Garonne. This subscription offers one ride per day from their home to their schools.
  • 2.2) Four Years and Under (free): Children four years and under can travel for free, as long as they travel with an adult.
  • 2.3) 10 Rides (€4): Offers 10 rides.
  • 2.4) 31 Days (€10): Offers unlimited rides for 31 days.
  • 2.5) Annual (€100): Offers unlimited rides for a year. You require to be between four and 25 years of age during the day that you buy the subscription. It can only be paid with cash.

3) Students 26-35 (€9.80): Offers a subscription to people between 26 and 35 years of age enrolled in college or in a vocational school, called "10 Rides at Reduced Rate." You need to have your primary residency in the area covered by Tisséo.

4) Seniors 65+ (free): Only offers a subscription for people over 65 years old living in Haute-Garonne, called "Subscription for Senior Citizens." This subscription offers rides for a year, and can be renewed each year for €10. This subscription does not offer rides for the Airport Shuttle.

5) Groups (€5.50): Offers a ticket that gives you 12 rides for a day on the metro, which can be shared by many people.

6) Large Families (€9.80): Only offers a subscription called "10 Rides with Discounts for Families," which offers 10 rides to people with families of at least three children under 18 years of age. You need to go to Tisséo's offices to request it, and bring a proof of address and proof of family size.

7) Job Seekers (free): Only offers a subscription called "Job Seekers," which offers rides for six months to people who are looking for a job. The person needs to be under 65 years of age, to be enrolled in the Pôle Emploi agency, and they should not be receiving any income.

8) RSA Recipients (free): Offers free rides to people on welfare who have a Pastel card.

    9) People with Disabilities: Offers subscriptions to people with disabilities. They are divided into the following categories: Caregivers, 80% of Disabilities, and 10 Rides with a Discount.

  • 9.1) Caregivers (free): Offers rides to caregivers of people with disabilities. This subscription does not offer rides for the Airport Shuttle. The caregiver needs a Pastel Card with the text "Needed for support" printed on it.
  • 9.2) 80% of disabilities (free): Offers rides for five years to people with a disability rate of 80%.
  • 9.3) 10 Rides with a Discount (€9.80): Offers 10 rides to people with a disability rate between 50% and 79%. 

If you are interested in visiting attractions such as the Garonne River, there is an additional set of tickets. This set of tickets is called the Transport and Tourism Network. This service offers tickets for everyone. These tickets are divided into the following categories: Touristic Pass 72 H, Touristic Pass 48 H, and Touristic Pass 24 H.

  • 1) Touristic Pass 72 H (€29): Offers unlimited rides for three days. Also offers discounts to touristic attractions and events. It can be bought at Toulouse’s offices of tourism, the Charles de Gaulle Square, and in Tisséo’s offices.
  • 2) Touristic Pass 48 H (€22): Offers unlimited rides for two days. Also offers discounts in touristic attractions and cultural events on the city.
  • 3) Touristic Pass 24 H (€15): Offers unlimited rides for a day. It also offers discounts in touristic attractions and in cultural events.

Subscriptions

Pastel Card: This is a card needed to store the subscriptions for the metro. Only the buyer can use it. It costs €8. This card also offers you discounts in Vélôtoulouse’s bicycles. Additionally, the Pastel Card offers you discounts in the city’s parking services. Everyone can buy this card.

You can buy tickets, subscriptions and the Pastel Card, as well as make any questions, in Tisséo’s offices. The offices are located in the following stations, and have the following office hours:

  • 1) Airport: Opens every day except on May 1st. The office hours on weekdays are from 9:00 am to 3:25 pm. Sundays and holidays’ office hours are from 3:25 pm to 10:00 pm.
  • 2) Arénes: The office only open on weekdays. The office hours are from 6:30 am to 7:50 pm.
  • 3) Balma-Gramont: The office opens on weekdays and Saturdays. Weekday’s office hours are from 6:30 am to 7:50 pm. Saturday’s office hours are from 10:30 am until 7:00 pm.
  • 4) Basso-Cambo: Opens on weekdays and Saturdays. Weekdays’ office hours are from 6:30 am until 7:50 pm. Saturday’s office hours are from 10:20 am until 12:40 pm, and from 1:00 pm until 4:50 pm.
  • 5) Jean-Jaurés: Opens on weekdays and Saturdays. Its office hours are from 6:30 am until 7:50 pm.
  • 6) Marengo SNCF: Opens every day, except Saturdays and on May 1st. Weekday’s office hours are from 6:30 am until 7:50 pm. Sundays and holidays’ office hours are from 3:50 pm until 10:20 pm.

You can also contact e-agency, which is the online website of Tisséo’s offices. Through e-agency, you can order the Pastel Card, which will be sent via free shipping to your home address in five working days. Additionally, you can buy the Annual subscription through e-agency.

There are 110 shops that are associated with Tisséo that sell tickets for the metro. These shops include newspaper stands, bakeries, and tobacco shops. These shops can also refill the Pastel Card. To find these shops, look for the Tisséo logo on them.

Another Toulouse metro map

Plan métro Toulouse

Park and Ride

There Park'n Ride at major stations. For example, on line B, there are parkings at the terminal stations Borderouge and Ramonville.

Tips

  • 1) You can enjoy many works of art at many stations of the metro. At any ticket booth, grab a sheet called "Galeries d'Art," which contains information about the works of art displayed.
  • 2) Make sure to carry coins if you want to buy tickets at vending machines, since they may not accept bills. Also, these machines only accept French credit cards and debit cards.
  • 3) There are services to help people who are visually impaired or hearing impaired. These services consist of displaying an interpreter on a computer screen. This interpreter uses French sign language through a webcam in real time. These services need to be requested. 
  • 4) The metro's app and online site include a planner where you can find metros that offer easy access to people on wheelchairs. You could also find stations that have elevators available.

Rules

  • 1) If you bring your car and you want to use the metro, park and ride services are available at some of the metro's stations. In line A, the park and ride spots are located at the following stations: Arènes, which has over 500 parking spots; Argoulets, which has over 800 parking spots; Balma-Gramont, which has over 1300 parking spots; Basso-Cambo, which has over 500 parking spots; and Jolimont, which has over 300 parking spots.
  • 2) There are security personnel at the metro's turnstiles. Do not attempt to enter the metro without paying for your ticket or with a counterfeit ticket, or you may get arrested.
  • 3) Police officers work alongside the metro's security personnel at Jean-Jaurès station.
  • 4) You need to validate your ticket before entering the metro.

Fun facts

  • 1) The metro's trains use rubber wheels.
  • 2) The stations have doors that separate platforms from the train tracks as a security measure.
  • 3) Each of the metro's trains use 750v of electricity.
  • 4) The metro's train models are VAL models, the same train models used by the Lille Metro, as well as trains in Taipei, Uijeongbu, Rennes, Turin, Paris, and in Chicago's O'Hare Airport.
  • 5) Once you board the metro, pre-recorded voices announce whether you are going to the next station (by saying “Prochaine”) or if the train is making a connection (by saying “Correpondance”)
  •  
  • Each station of the metro has an art work as part of its decoration and is designed for a particular group of architects who still following common guidelines, had made each station a different space
  • Toulouse subway lines are ones of the largest and oldest operating fully automatically and without driver (VAL) lines in the world.
  • The lines are prepared to be accessible to people with mobility problems.

Future expansions

The construction of a third line is currently under discussion. The current plan is to have this line built by 2024. This new line will connect the Matabiau station to the region of Colomiers. This line will have 17 stations. There are plans to expand the platforms of the stations in line A by 2019. The goal is to increase daily ridership to over 390,000 people per day. There are also plans to make new stations in line A in order to offer rides to the region of Saint Simon. Similarly, there are plans to construct new stations for line B to offer rides from Borderouge to L'Union.

Nearby attractions

The Jean-Jaurès station will be used as a reference point. Follow these instructions to go to the following touristic attractions from Jean-Jaurès station using the metro.

  • 1) Musée des Augustins: The trip lasts four minutes. From Jean-Jaurès station, board the metro in line A towards Basso Cambo during three minutes. Get off at Esquirol station. Finally, walk towards 21, Rue de Metz.
  • 2) Canal du Midi: The trip lasts four minutes. From Jean-Jaurès station, board the metro in line B towards Borderouge Toulouse during four minutes. Finally, get off at Canal du Midi.
  • 3) Fondation Bemberg: The trip lasts five minutes. From Jean-Jaurès, board the metro in line A towards Basso Cambo during three minutes. Get off at Esquirol station. Next, walk 120 meters towards Rue de Metz. Then, walk five meters to Chemin Piéton. Walk 25 meters again towards Rue de Metz. Finally, walk towards Hôtel d'Assézat, Place d'Assézat.
  • 4) Les Abattoirs: The trip lasts 10 minutes. From Jean-Jaurès, board the metro in line A towards Basso Cambo for four minutes. Get off at Saint Cyprien-République station. Then, walk 150 meters to Chemin Piéton. Next, walk 16 meters to Rue Reclusane. Finally, walk to 76 Allées Charles-de-Fitte.
  • 5) Musée Paul-Dupuy: The trip lasts five minutes. From Jean-Jaurès, board the metro in line B towards Ramonville-Saint-Agne for two minutes. Get off at Carmes station. Walk five meters to Escaliers. Next, walk four meters to Chemin Pietón. Later, walk 10 meters to Rue du Canard. Next, walk two meters to Rue du Languedoc. Walk one more time towards Chemin Pietón for 160 meters. Finally, walk 40 meters to 13 Rue de la Pleau.

Media

Toulouse Metro Station Arenes

Metro map of Toulouse

Metro map of Toulouse Full resolution
Map via www.tisseo.fr
See map full resolution. It may take a little bit to load.

Toulouse metro map

  • Also Known As:
  • Passengers/Day 350000
  • Fares:
  • 24h operation: No
  • Air Conditioning: No
  • Walk between platforms: Yes
  • Driverless trains: VAL (since 1993)
  • Screen Doors Platforms: VAL
  • Average Speed: km/h
  • Max. Speed: 80km/h
  • Operator: Tisséo-Réseau urbain
  • 1
  • Toulouse Metro Official Website
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