The Research Passes

The research pass gives access to researchers, students (from Master level) and every person conducting research work, to all the BnF collections (40 million documents) and to the all the library research rooms located on 5 different sites: 
  • Rez-de-jardin of the François-Mitterrand Library (over 1200 seats),
  • Richelieu Library  (Manuscripts, Prints, and Photography, Performing arts, Coins, Medals and Antiques),
  • Arsenal Library,
  • Louvois and Opéra  libraries (music)


3 passes to choose from

  • 1-Day research pass
  • 5-Day research pass (consecutive or not)

These two passes grant you free circulation during your day in all reading rooms of the Research Library as well as on all our sites. They don’t have an expiry date. 

  • Unlimited Research Pas

This pass additionally grants you free access to the Library (Haut-de-jardin) reading rooms, exhibitions, and events at the BnF. 
The research pass can be completed by access/passes to partner libraries of INHA (National Institute for Art History), Ina (National Audiovisual Institute), and CNC (National Center for Cinema and the Moving Image) upon specific research justification. 

The 3 passes are valid for one year from their delivery date. They are strictly personal.


  • Yearly unlimited research pass : 50 € (full fare) / 35 € (reduced fare)
  • 1-Day research pass : 5 € 
  • 5-Day research pass jours : 20 €

Buying online

For who/Terms of use 

  • You have to be over 18 years old. 
  • You need to show proof that you are conducting academic, professional or personal research work.  

Heritage collections consultation is chiefly meant for extended, long-term research. It can also respond to short-term research, especially in case of not being able to find a document in other libraries. 

Master and postgraduate students, higher education teachers and researchers will be automatically registered. They will need to provide proof of research upon retrieving their pass. 

Higher education students above a Bachelor’s level will get their accreditation upon presentation of the documents indicated below in the ‘Documents to present during your interview with the Accreditation Service’ section. 

Undergraduate students will be able to gain access only if their documentary needs are justified and upon presentation of the documents indicated below in the ‘Documents to present during your interview with the Accreditation Service’ section. 

Getting Accredited  

Passes can be obtained through a personalized interview conducted by a librarian at the accreditation service at the François-Mitterrand or Richelieu libraries. 
It will help to assess the needs of each reader and determine if accreditation is needed and for how long (1-Day, 5-Day, Unlimited).

Accreditation services close at 7 pm. No accreditation can be delivered past this time. 

Required documents 

For everyone 

A valid piece of ID (with a photograph): 

  • Identity card
  • Passport
  • Residency permit 
  • Resident card 
  • Driving license

For university and professional research 

Required documents 
StatuS documents
  • Higher education professors 
  • Researchers from public or private establishments
  • Grandes écoles and preparatory classes professors 
  • Professional card 
  • or work contract 
  • or an introduction letter from a university or research institute 
  • Capes and agrégation students 
  • Valid student card  or certificate of exam registration 
  • Doctoral students 
  • Master 1 and 2 students 
  • Grandes écoles students
  • Engineering schools students 
  • Valid student card  or school certificate 
  • or certification by a research supervisor 
  • Bachelor students (year 1, 2 and 3)
  • Students with an equivalent study level  
  • Valid student card  or school certificate 
  • bibliography indicating the documents to consult 
  • Professional research 
  • Employer letter confirming the applicant’s occupation
  • or professional card 
  • List of the documents to consult at the BnF


For personal research 

Readers will have to motivate their requests during their interview with a librarian at the Accreditation service
Carte pro 

This card is aimed exclusively at companies and private or public organizations, including one man-businesses,  independent workers and artisans. It offers yearly access and specific services and is obtained by mail only. 

Buying a pass 

Fort first-time purchases and renewals,  you can get your research pass (1-Day, 5-Day, unlimited):

  • On-site (Richelieu and François-Mitterrand libraries),
  • Online with a credit card 

Passes must be retrieved at the greeting desks by the holder upon presentation of supporting documents. It is personal and cannot ben let. 

Other services and special offers

An introductory visit to the François-Mitterrand research Library 

For: readers and future readers of the research library (François-Mitterrand). Introduction on how to reserve seats and documents; presentation of the research tools; help in reading rooms

Entrance to the reading rooms depends on the current occupation rate. 
Duration: 45 minutes
Rate: free upon presentation of a research pass 
Upon application 

Discover more


Personalized services

If you want to get to know the Library and navigate the spaces or know which offer is better suited to you, your research or expectations, we offer a bespoke service for everyone including non-ticket holders. You can access the service:

  • By making an online appointment and selecting a 30-minute slot
  • Without appointment at the Accreditation Service of the François-Mitterrand or Richelieu Library