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Study and living expenses in France 


Study Expenses

As with any university experience, it is important for international students to consider the total cost of their education in order to create a realistic budget. Thankfully, public higher education in France is affordable which also makes it accessible to more students.

Each year, the French government sets the cost of tuition for its public universities. For citizens or residents of the European Economic Area, the 2019 annual costs are 170 Euros for undergraduate License courses (the French equivalent of a Bachelor’s Degree) , 243 Euros for Master’s Degree courses, and 380 Euros for Doctorate Degree courses. However, starting at the end of 2019, international students who are not residents of the EEA will be charged a different amount for all undergraduate and Master’s programs. The cost for License programs will be 2,770 Euros per year, the cost for Master’s programs will be 3,770 Euros per year, and the cost for Doctorate programs will remain at 380 Euros per year. Payments are usually due up front at the beginning of the academic year.

While tuition at public universities for non-EEA citizens and residents has increased, the good news is that scholarships are widely available. Along with the tuition hike for international students, the French government pledged to increase the availability of scholarships and grants. Our counselors specialize in assisting students with finding and applying for scholarships, so please contact us so we can help find ways to make your French education more affordable.

For students who wish to study at a private university or within the Grand Ecole system, the higher cost of tuition is something to contemplate. The benefits of attending a private French university or Grand Ecole include better funding for various academic programs, nicer facilities, and more prestigious professors. However, the costs can reach up to 10,000 Euros annually for private universities and between 7,500 and 25,000 Euros annually for a Grand Ecole. Scholarships may also be available for international students who choose either of these options, so before deciding, students and their families need to examine all the factors and weigh the pros and cons of each academic system. Students can check the worldwide ranking of each school they are considering, research the level of excellence in their chosen field of study, and confirm their eligibility for scholarships. Please don’t hesitate to ask our counselors for help during this process!

Living and Accommodation Costs

Along with tuition costs, students who wish to study in France also have to deliberate their annual cost of living. This includes rent, utilities, transportation, and groceries. The cost of living will always be less in smaller towns than in big cities, with costs in Paris being especially high. Students can expect to spend around 1,000 Euros per month in cities such as Lyon and Toulouse, but up to 1,400 Euros per month in Paris. In even smaller cities such as Dijon and Montpellier, the cost of living for a single student can be as low as 500 Euros a month. Since these cities are home to some of the best Business Schools in the Grand Ecole system (the Burgundy Business School in Dijon and the Montpellier Business School), the lower cost of living can offset the higher cost of tuition.

Just as there is help to ease the cost of tuition, there is also help available for students who cannot afford the cost of living in France. Students can apply to live in a university residence hall, cutting their monthly rent costs from around 500 Euros for an apartment to only 120 Euros. Another option is living with a French family in a homestay. While this is more expensive than a university residence hall, it is still less than renting an apartment and comes with one or more meals per day. International students are also permitted to work 20 hours each week to help mitigate costs, and discounts for students are available on things like transportation cards and in restaurants.

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