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French law requires exchange students to prove that they have a monthly income of 615€ mininum without working.

This can be proved by:

  • A proof of scholarship/bursary
  • Guarantee by a creditworthy person in France
  • An automatic standing order

Estimated budget for the 1st month

> up to 2 000€

  • Rent: 400€ minimum if you live on your own (200€ for university housing)
  • Accommodation deposit: usually one month's rent
  • Housing insurance for the year: 50€
  • Tuition fees: from 183 to 606€ depending on your degree programme
  • Registration with Social Security: 203€
  • Additional health insurance cost: from 70 to 300€
  • Other utility charges (telephone, electricity, etc.): 100€

Banks and money transfers

France’s currency is the Euro, like 15 other EU countries (Germany, Austria, Belgium, Spain, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Greece, Slovenia, Cyprus, Malta, and Slovakia).

Upon your arrival, we advise you to open a bank account as soon as possible.

A French bank account is compulsory to benefit from the Caisse d’allocations familiales (CAF or Family Allowances Fund) and from housing aid.

To open an account, you will need to :

  • Choose a bank and make an appointment
  • Bring the following supporting documents:
    • ID or passport
    • Residence permit (except for EU students)
    • Proof of residence (electricity bill, rent receipt, accommodation certificate, less than three months old)
    • Student ID to benefit from special rates

Once you have opened your account, you will get a statement of banking identity (RIB or Relevé d’Identité Bancaire). It enables you to communicate your bank details and to pay or get paid by transfers.

In most cases, opening a bank account is free but some services can be charged. International students can open either a « non-resident » bank account or a « resident » bank account (in Euro or other currency) according to the length of their stay.


Working in France as a foreign student

  • Foreign students from EU countries are allowed to work in France during their studies if their university entitles them to student Social Security
  • Student residence permits allow foreign students to work in France.
  • Students with a long-stay visa benefit of the same rights throughout the period of validity of their visa (one year at most) 

Professional activity must be undertaken as secondary to studies, with a limit of 964 hours of work per year (60% of annual working time).

Exception: Algerian and Croatian students

Find our more about work regulations on bas-rhin.gouv.fr.

How much does it cost?


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