The Louvre Museum in Paris has announced that it will raise its entrance ticket price from €17 ($18.30) to €22 ($23.70), a nearly 29 percent increase, beginning January 15, 2024. The museum cited the ever-increasing demands on the museum, its dedication to its resident programs, and an effort to offset energy costs as reasons for the price hike.
This is the first ticket price increase for the Louvre in over eight years and comes as the city is preparing to host the Summer 2024 Olympics. Though their release did not mention the Olympics as a driving force for this increase, the Louvre finds itself in good company amidst other institutions that are raising their prices ahead of the Games. Last month, the region’s president Valérie Pécresse announced that during the Olympics and Paralympics, the Ile de France region would double its public transportation prices from €2.10 to €4 (about $4.30) for non-residents. Hotels have also been raising their prices amid an influx of tourists.
But the Louvre’s price increase comes at a time when many museums are raising their admission prices, especially in New York, where since the pandemic, museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum, the Guggenheim, and the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) all raised their entry prices to $30, many citing inflation and fiscal emergencies as a result of the pandemic. For most of these institutions, these price hikes come after years of financial stability that were shattered by the pandemic.
And while MoMA sees over three million visitors each year, the Louvre expects to welcome nearly nine million visitors by the end of the year. Thus, their price raise would help to accommodate the influx of visitors. Though this number is far less than pre-pandemic stats, where visitor numbers peaked as high as 45,000 per day.
In a release, Laurence des Cars, President and Director of the Museum said, “I am happy and proud to see the French public, from Ile-de-France and Paris, reclaiming the Louvre Museum. The quality of this relationship is at the heart of our mission. We work to restore this 'desire for the Louvre' to our local public and try to open new doors for them: those of renewed mediations, those of the cultural otherness that this museum with a universal vocation carries within it, that of sharing and pleasure.”
Most French residents on the other hand have nothing to fear: children are eligible to enter free, European Union residents under 26 years of age get in for free, and people in certain professions also get free admission. These groups make up 30 percent of the total number of visitors, according to the New York Times.