I won the 2024 Paris Olympics lottery…and it cost me dearly, dearly! Despite everything, I am happy to attend for the first time in my life this great world event, the Olympic Games. A dream come true.

I was raffled during the first phase of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games ticket sales last February and was able to buy tickets to attend competitions in different disciplines: tennis, soccer, volleyball beach and athletics.

The 2024 Paris Olympics will take place from July 26 to August 11, 2024. So we will go as a family, for a few days, my husband, our two children and me.

“Mom, have you ever been to the Olympics?” asked my children. “No, I’m not your luck!” You realize, you will be 12 and thirteen and a half, and I will be 49 in 2024! »

There has been a lot of criticism in the French media about the excessive price of tickets and the complexity of the purchase process. Indeed, it is an Olympic discipline in itself to fully understand how ticket purchases work and the different phases. We entered the draw in December 2022; we received an email on February 16, announcing that we had been among the lucky ones drawn. We thus had, two days later, a slot of 48 hours to buy our tickets. We had to, in this first phase, buy our tickets “per pack”, with the obligation to buy the same number of tickets for three different sports – with a limit of 30 tickets. Are you still following?

You have to plan a good budget, because even if the price of tickets starts at 24 euros ($35) per “session”, they are gone very quickly, too quickly. The newspaper L’Équipe even speaks of the “yéti” or the “Loch Ness monster”, “because the 24 euro note has become a fantasized object, an urban myth”, writes Jean-Philippe Leclaire, journalist for the sports daily. “Apart from going to see golf, sailing in Marseille or a soccer match in a provincial town, the 24 euro ticket is the most sought after of these Olympic Games,” he adds.

Pay up to 980 euros ($1437) for an athletics final, up to 290 euros ($425) for a fencing final, and up to 360 euros ($528) for a judo final .

We paid 50 euros ($73) for a soccer match at Parc des Princes, 80 euros ($117) for beach volleyball, 110 euros ($161) for tennis at Roland-Garros and 130 euros ($161 ) for an athletics qualifying session at the Stade de France. For the opening ceremony, along the Seine, ticket prices range from 90 to 2,700 euros ($132 to $3,961); for the closing ceremony, they sell for between 45 and 1600 euros ($66 and $2347).

The organization of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games said that there was a huge enthusiasm during this first phase of purchase and that 3.25 million tickets were sold in three weeks, a record for a sporting event in France. The French public represents two-thirds of buyers — the remaining buyers come from 158 countries. Of the 10 million tickets, 1 million tickets do indeed retail for 24 euros, assures the organization, and 4 million tickets, 50 euros.

As for our family organization, we will have to find accommodation. Fortunately, thanks to our French origins, we should find family or friends to host us… even if some Parisians we spoke to tell us that it’s now or never to do business and that they may be able to rent their apartment for a fortune, to teams from NBC, CNN or even Anderson Cooper…! Indeed, according to the same RTL poll, 64% of French people believe that the Olympic Games will create economic opportunities for France and the French people.

But in the end, going to Paris during the Olympics, is that a good idea?

“If you want to stroll in Paris on the banks of the Seine or be quiet in the different districts of the capital, this may not be the right year, but if you are a fan of the Olympic Games and want to to experience this exceptional effervescence, the summer of 2024 is for you, because there are going to be celebrations all over Paris and it will be a party”, explains in a telephone interview Corinne Menegaux, general manager of Paris je t love, the Paris tourist office.

She admits that everything will be more complicated and more expensive. “We expect around 15.9 million tourists between the Olympics and Paralympics. It will probably be more complicated to get around and accommodation prices will increase,” she said.

During the competitions, 4.2 million rooms are offered in the Île-de-France region (from 1 to 5 stars). “We will make efforts to regulate things as much as possible, but each hotel is free to apply its rates. The closer you are to an Olympic site, the more expensive the rooms will be. There will be possibilities of accommodation in Île-de-France, it may be an opportunity to discover the Paris region, and have more affordable prices. Already this year, there is a hotel price inflation of 30%, not just in Paris, all over the world,” explains Corinne Menegaux.

She advises to book this summer for next July, because Paris is a very attractive destination for tourists. “Recent images of protests against pension reform and piled up bins haven’t had much of an impact, the indicators for the coming season are very positive,” she said.

If, like me, you want to splurge, you have until April 20 to enter the draw for the second phase of single ticket purchases. It will take place on May 9, with ticket sales on May 11. And there will be a third phase of purchase at the end of 2023 and in 2024, then an official resale platform will be set up.