I will attend an event at Ecole Polytechnique in Palaiseau from Monday to Friday. The event will take place between 8am to 10pm, but some days it takes shorter (like until 5:30 pm). I may also have the weekends free before and after the event, so it is also a chance to see Paris.

Should I stay in Paris or in the suburbs (like Palaiseau, Massy, Saclay) close to Ecole Polytechnique? If the event ends at 5:30pm I will want to see the city, eat/drink, etc. I need to find a place that is safe and easily accessible by public transport to stay low on budget. Unfortunately budget is a concern for me, I only have 50-80 Euros for a night for accomodation.

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    I’m pretty sure that if you have less than 80 euros per night for accommodation you won’t be able to stay within Paris city limits. Also X is not very well served by public transport, the only options are buses from Massy Palaiseau or a pretty long walk from Lozère station. Given your schedules, I would probably stay near Massy Palaiseau (check the bus timetables though). – jcaron May 23 '19 at 7:53
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    I'm afraid 80€ with halfway decent public transport limits you to hostels or student housing. When is this? During academic holidays you may be able to get a room in student housing. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' May 25 '19 at 20:48
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    @jcaron Airbnb does offer apartments in Paris well within that price. Maybe not at short notice though. – Roman Odaisky May 26 '19 at 1:43
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    @RomanOdaisky there are a few, but choice is limited (so it would be difficult to find one close to RER B), and in many cases they are « chambres de bonne » in the attic which would probably not even be legal to rent as a regular flat given their small size and the roof being a real issue for people of regular height. – jcaron May 26 '19 at 10:48
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    @jcaron I’ve recently booked a nice non-attic apartment right next to the Jardin Botanique for a couple of nights at 87€/night (including all fees). I’m sure being less picky about location and amenities will let one stay comfortably within the budget mentioned. – Roman Odaisky May 26 '19 at 14:15

École Polytechnique is on the Saclay plateau south of Paris. To get there from Paris, the only reasonable route is to take RER line B. Get off at Massy-Palaiseau and take bus 91-06 or 91-10 to Polytechnique. You can also get off a little further at Lozère and walk, but it's a steep hill from the train, and since some trains terminate at Massy, there's little advantage in walking.

It takes about 1 hour to get to the center of Paris. The buses and trains run every few minutes throughout the day. Allow for delays as both the roads and the trains are congested.

Use the RATP website or the app to get routes and schedules, and real-time information for some lines (I don't know if real-time information is available for 91-06 and 91-10).

If you want to conveniently go to Paris, you'll pretty much need to be close to RER B. Some trains skip stations; all trains to Massy-Palaiseau serve all stations in Paris as well as Bougr-la-Reine, La Croix de Berny and Antony. However, with events lasting from 8am to 10pm, you'll really want to be close to École Polytechnique. École Polytechnique itself has some housing for visitors, but it's limited. The last bus to Polytechnique departs from Massy-Palaiseau at 0:00 (beware that there may be fewer buses in July and August).

Unfortunately, Paris is both a major tourist city and a major business city, so accommodation tends to be very expensive. 80€ per night is very cheap for Paris. If you qualify for some student accommodation, it'll be cheaper than that, but there isn't much of it except during academic holidays (and even then you'd better book in advance and hope you're lucky). Otherwise it may condemn you to a hostel bed and a long commute.

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