France advice

Old Feb 26th, 2005, 08:24 PM
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France advice

Hey everyone,

I'm an 18 y old male from Montreal that wants to live and work in france for 3 months during my summer break. I really don't know where to star though because its not easy finding a place to live and a place to work somewhere that is so far away!

Anyway, I heard horror stories about how hard it is to find a job and apartment in France so ym question is this:
Which should I make my priority?
Like, should I find an appartment first then start looking around for work nearby (I'd only have a bike, no car). Or should I find a job, then look for an apartment nearby?

Also, it is necessary I find a place to live and work before leaving? Or would it be possible to spend a couple of days when i get there to find everything???

Third and final thing is, I'm looking for a city that isn't too rural because I'm young and I need a theatre to go to, hangouts, good nightlife/clubs etc. and I want to really be ablt to experience true french culture, not just what americans tourists go home with after walking up and down the eiffel tour..
Basically I want to be able to live like your typical frenchman when i'm there so I can understand their true culture. (BTW: I think I'm going to have to see Paris at one point during the trip or else I'll look like an idiot when i get back)
Any suggestions?? Anything you got for me would be very much appreciated

- Nick
Sagi2oo5 is offline  
Old Feb 27th, 2005, 04:51 AM
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I recommend that you begin your research with one of the books that specialize in information such as this. There's one called "Living and Working in France" that should be available at libraries, in major bookstores, or on-line.

That said, two cities that come to mind are Montpelier and Aix-en-Provence, both in the south of France. They're both college towns and so there's a young, lively crowd. Also, during the summer the area is a prime tourist destination and so there may be a need for seasonal help.

Best of luck.
elle is offline  
Old Feb 27th, 2005, 04:54 AM
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Hi sagi,

Try the Thorntree forum at

They are mostly folks your age, doing similar things.

ira is offline  
Old Feb 27th, 2005, 06:01 AM
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Unless there are special arrangements between Québec province and France and/or a possible student status can be of any help, any work you will find will be illegal. The same would apply to a Frenchman seeking employment in Montréal. I would advise you to seek information with the French consulate in Montréal.
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Old Feb 27th, 2005, 10:35 AM
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Another very useful book is "Paris Inside Out" by David Applefield, a guide to living and working in France by an American expatriate who has lived in France since the early 1980s. The latest edition appears to be 2002, and it's available from I don't believe much has changed legally since 2002. As noted in earlier posts, you do need "working papers," and the best way to obtain them is as a student. Good luck!
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