French people are losing confidence in the Paris Olympics

Hi, it’s Jack! I’m a developer on Datawrapper’s app team. Today we’re starting the Olympics early.

With the Paris 2024 opening ceremony happening in 120 days, I wanted to take a look at how the French population is feeling about the Olympic Games. Over the years of planning and preparing, people have been surveyed several times on what they’re looking forward to at the Games and how confident they are that the organizers can pull them off.

Over the last three years, there's been a significant drop in the proportion of respondents who believe the games will have a positive impact on France’s image, tourist appeal, economy, or employment. And across social groups, there's been a similar drop in the percentage of people who are in favor of the Games happening in France at all.

Following a similar pattern, the French people have been losing confidence in the successful organization of Paris 2024, with notable decreases in trust that the opening ceremony will go well and that public transit will be satisfactory.

The government has already abandoned certain promises. Instead of the original plan to make all public transportation free during the Games, Valérie Pécresse, the president of the Île-de-France region, has recently declared that metro tickets will be “set at €4 so that nobody buys one” (an increase from €2.10, meant to push visitors to buy the special €16 daily pass and avoid creating long lines at the ticket machines).

Overall, only 36% of the population says they’re excited for the 2024 Olympics. Even among people who regularly stay up to date with sports news and events, only 55% are eagerly anticipating the Games.

Interestingly, between men and women there is a stark contrast in excitement for Paris 2024. Although somewhat more men than women say they are looking forward to the Olympics, a much greater number of men are regular fans of other sports. Proportionally, women are more excited for the Games than you might expect.

As of right now, the French people are less confident than ever in this summer’s Games. And with several unions having filed a strike notice for the whole Olympic and Paralypmic period, including transport personnel and rail workers — whether you like watching sports or not, this summer’s Games are bound to be interesting to follow.

Thanks for reading! Come back next Thursday for a Weekly Chart from Lisa, our head of communications.