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Up to date info on Eiffel Tower options

Paris Forum, Travel Discussion for Paris - TripAdvisor - www.tripadvisor.com
I've done lots of searching so looking for some up to date, perhaps local knowledge.

I understand now that advance purchase tickets are for lift only, and that at booking you must decide whether you want to go up to 2nd floor, or all the way to the top.

In the past there were comments that even with pre-purchase, you may have to wait for ages at ground level for the elevator compared to walk-up ticket buyers who could use the stairs and get to the 2nd level perhaps before the pre-purchasers. Also, you'd likely have to wait for ages on the 2nd floor for the lift to the top. Some of these comments were from years ago so I have no idea if they are still relevant... maybe there weren't timed tickets then. Are either of these things still concerns?

Tickets for my dates aren't out yet, but if I do a dummy booking for current dates, the earliest time slot shown (behind the info box saying no tickets available), is 11.00 am. It shows time slots from 11 till the end of the day, but nothing earlier. It seems unlikely that 11.00 is the earliest ticket I would be able to book, but is that the case? I can't find info on the site about that, though it does say the tower is open at 9, but I guess it's possible earlier slots might be for tours or walk ups?

And finally I guess, are there reliably quieter times? like late afternoon, or evening? If 9.00 am tickets are available I'd be tempted to go for them, but also of interest could be 8 or 9 in the evening, then staying around to watch the lights after from the Trocadero maybe. I'd imagine evening to be quieter, but maybe not... we will be there 9-11 August.

Thanks in advance.


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