With one of the most respected education systems in the world, France is a popular destination for international students. Being one of Europe’s largest countries and boasting a superb cuisine, social scene, and 35 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, there is a lot to see and do in France! It is also a great base for exploring Europe, with nine bordering countries and a strong transportation system. Education is taken seriously by the French state, accounting for a large proportion of its budget. Unlike in other countries, international students are treated no differently from native students. Tuition fees, health coverage, and housing subsidies are accessible to everyone, regardless of where you come from. Although there are some programs taught in English across France, being able to speak French is very important for making the most of your study experience. Not being able to speak French will put you at a disadvantage. Student housing is one of the areas in which international students benefit from the laws that provide them with equal treatment as citizens.
Students, even international, can apply for CAF, which is student government assistance for housing. Students usually received around 100 euros a month. Though the process takes two or three months, it is paid retroactively from the time of application. Housing that is not handled through school can be difficult to secure. Often, landlords will want a security deposit and/or a letter from the bank. Renters have tremendous rights in France, and it is very hard for landlords to evict tenants, so landlords often ask for French references. Many schools have arrangements with housing providers and landlords to avoid these obstacles.