How To Apply For A Student Visa For Studying in France

December 14, 2016

If you are a U.S. citizen preparing to study abroad in France for more than 90 days, you will need a student visa. While the process is long and a little overwhelming, I am here to make life a little easier. Follow these steps, and you will be fine. The total processing time for U.S. students seeking a visa to study abroad in France takes about six weeks.

How to Apply for Your Student Visa

Step 1: Set up your Campus France online application

You will need the following:

  1. Your acceptance letter from the university where you are studying with the exact dates of your program
  2. A photo ID
  3. Select the option, “Study Abroad/Exchange student,“ in your application. Once you have received placement, that means that you have already been accepted into a program. Please make sure you choose this option.

Step 2: Once your application is complete and submitted, mail the following documents to Campus France

If you paid online:

  1. A photocopy of your application for your official acceptance letter
  2. A photocopy of the money order or proof of online payment. Note: you can pay your Campus France fee online.
  3. Your Campus France Admissions Form

If you didn’t pay online:

  1. A photocopy of your application for your official acceptance letter
  2. A money order of US$180 made out to MCUFEU. Write your name and Campus France ID number on your money order
  3. Your Campus France Admissions Form

Mail these documents to the address below:

Campus France, 4101 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, D.C. 20007 U.S.

Step 3: Book your in-person interview with the consulate designated to your region

You must be approved by Campus France to attend your interview. Because of this, you should book your interview for 30 days after the date you completed your Campus France application.

Tips for setting up your interview:

  1. Navigate this map, to find out the location the consulate for your region
  2. Double check with the consulate to make sure that you need an in-person interview

Step 4: Before attending your interview, make sure you have payment confirmation and application confirmation from Campus France

Step 5: Make sure you have all the documents necessary for your interview

Review the French Consulate’s list of documents you will need for your visa appointment inteview. It includes:

  • A copy of the student’s official acceptance letter or acknowledgment of enrollment
  • An copy of the e-mail message from CampusFrance (entitled “confirmation e-mail”) informing the student that he or she may begin preparations to apply to the consulate for the visa (make appointment, collect documents)
  • A copy of the receipt for payment issued by CampusFrance (does not apply to exempted students)
  • Orginial copies of the two application forms for extended-stay visa (downloadable), completed and signed
  • Two recent photographs in U.S. passport photo format
  • Your passport and one photocopy of your passport
  • Visa application and processing fee (nonrefundable) in the U.S. dollar equivalent of €50 (check your local consulate’s Web site as the rate of exchange changes frequently)
  • One originial and one photocopy proof of sufficient means of support
  • Your airline ticket or reservation
  • One positive proof of residence
  • The French immigratio (OFII) form

Step 6: Attend Your Interview

Remember: you will not receive your visa on the day of your interview. It can take up to three weeks after your interview to receive your visa.

Helpful links:

Total Student Visa Processing Time - Six Weeks

– Three weeks for your Campus France (Études en France) approval — unless you pay for rush processing

– Three weeks to receive your visa after your interview

Please always remember to double check this information with your local consulate. This is meant to serve as a guideline only.

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