There are a lot of steps to take before you can live in France as an international student, but it is fairly simple. If you follow the plan below, you should not have any problems. 
Get the paperwork done in plenty of time (ID card, passport, visa, residence permit). Red tape can take a long time.  

Find somewhere to live 

Finding somewhere to live can be quite difficult, especially at the beginning of the academic year. To get through this stage, you have five possible types of dwelling available. Whatever the type of place you live in, you can obtain housing assistance (in French they are called APL or ALS) as an international student from the European Union or if you have a residence permit valid for more than 4 months. 

Social security and complementary health insurance 

You must belong to the students’ national health scheme. But if you are staying in France for less than three months, you must take out private insurance.


Open a bank account 

As soon as you arrive, you should start to open a bank account. This will enable you to receive housing assistance or healthcare reimbursements, and to have a credit card and chequebook. 


Find the right mobile phone contract

In France you can choose between a contract and a prepaid phone card. We strongly advise you to look carefully at each telephone operator before you commit yourself to a mobile or landline contract.