Immigration. Travel. Living.

Expat guides: work in Frace

Work permit - France

If seeing the Eiffel Tower every day and eating exceptionally great tasting cuisines sound amazing, then France is the right place for you do live.

France is not just one of the best places to reside in Europe. It is also one of the best places to work. This is a place where you work to live, you don’t live to work

You only have to work for 35 hours/week, plus over 30 days of paid vacation, a quality work environment, culture, and affordable healthcare. These are just some of the benefits of working in France. Are you still interested? This is a well-detailed guide for expats planning on relocating to France for work.]

French working culture & conditions

Working in France gives you a lot of room for improvement. With 35 hours work week, you have plenty of time to spend with your loved ones, learn a skill, learn how to ride a bike, build apps & websites, create a passive income, and spend quality time with your friends. Everyone is entitled to 30 days of paid vacation in this country.

The French know how to maintain a very optimized life-work balance. Do you know that there is a French law that prevents employees from checking work emails after 6 pm? Yes, the government wants you to be the best you can be. They are not encouraging laziness but implement Elton Mayo’s human relation approach. So you are sure of working in stress-free healthy scenery. 

French work culture is very structured, hierarchical, and formal. Innovation isn’t usually welcomed encouraged; career paths also tend to be very prearranged. Bureaucracy is another big challenge that you may face working as an expat in France. 

The job market

There are a lot of jobs for English-speaking expats in the country. The top hiring regions in France are Auvergne, Bretagne, Limousin, and Pays de la Loire. Although they are not top tourist destinations like Paris, Bordeaux, or Lyon, expats willing to move to these areas will find a lot of opportunities compared to Paris, France’s wealthiest and largest regional economies. 

Expats looking for employment will easily land a job if they can speak French fluently [required for most positions]. You should also know that academic levels are highly preferred to experience and accomplishments.

Top sectors are banking, management, legal advice, pharmaceuticals, hospitality, telecommunications, chemicals, automobile production, aerospace & defense, shipbuilding, construction, and civil engineering. 

If you are into the service industry, giving language lessons and tutorials is another great way to make money as an expat in France if you can speak two or more useful languages [English, French, Chinese, or Spanish). France is also big in art and culture. Selling rare and enchanting merchandise or souvenirs in Paris is also quite profitable.

While professionals like journalists, IT workers, architects, and doctors can either work remotely or look for job openings close to their place of residence. 

How to look for a Job

Since the French prefers to do business with friends, you will easily land a job through networking and alumni organizations, so building strong connections is very important if you plan on working here. Asking your friends & relations to help find employment is a good way to start your job search.

You can also search for employment via the Pole Emploi, the French employment service. They can help you find a good job in the country, and even offer you crucial training that will allow you to make money in France without a job i.e. local FLE [Français Langue Etrangère] and other top-rated courses. 

Finding employment is easier done using newspapers, agencies, the internet, events, and social networks.

How to find a job

To work as an expat in this part of Europe, you must adhere to the rules provided by the French immigration laws. These laws vary in region and nationality. Two major laws dictate the requirements for expats.

One of these laws dictates the employment qualifications for EU nationals and the other dictate the requirements for non-EU citizens. 

  1. EU citizens

The employment requirement for EU citizens is straightforward since all EU nationals can move to any EU member state without any special permit or travel document. But your employer will need to inspect your ID documents before you get employed. This can be your National ID, passport, or visa.

  1. Non-EU citizens 

Working with the French is harder for non-EU citizens since they need to possess a work permit before they can even travel to France. Only a handful of African countries enjoy visa-free access to France. But once you obtain your work permit, you can travel and start working as soon as possible.

Average salary 

The profession with the highest salary in France is doctors [£134,522 or €153,335]. An average worker in France can earn up to €56,624/annum. The minimum wage is €9.67/hour, multiplied by a 35-hour workweek allows a low-income worker to earn €1,466.62/month.

 Remember to address your interviewers as “monsieur” or “madam”, use the formal “Vous” rather than “Tu”, and greet formally by shaking hands.

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