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7 Tips For Working In Paris

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Summary: Our working in Paris guide offers information and tips for expats and others who want to work in Paris.

Expat Paris - 7 Tips For Working In Paris

Here are some top tips about working in Paris:

1. Research the appropriate work permit to live and work as an expat in France.

One expat in France wrote that to work in France, "be certain to have all your documents to prove you can work in the EU. Without proper work authorization, you may have a challenge. Even being married and being a resident here, I had to go back to the USA to get working papers from the French Embassy because the waiting time in France was almost a year and in the USA it was one day. I think Canada may be easier though."

Additional Information:

Types of France Visas
France Visas FAQ

2. Expats in France Have French and EU Laws to Navigate

Potential employers of expats in France must demonstrate that there isn't a French or other EU citizen capable of performing the job offered to the foreign national.

I wonder if you can help figure out something. I was under the impression that a foreigner in France would not be allowed to apply for a job unless the job has been listed on the national Pôle Emploi site for 3 months. Once the 3 months is over, the foreigner would be able to apply.

Did anyone hear of this ? If so, can you please send me keywords and/or references.

I've been working in France for almost 3 years and I would like to move to Paris and find a job in computer programming. I have a titre de séjour and I am working under a CDI contract. In theory, it shouldn't be too difficult to find something but this one "unsaid rule" is bugging me. From what I can tell, if the employer really wants to hire you, they'll list the posting in such a way so that only you would be qualified to get it.

3. Network with Other Expats and Join Professional Organizations

Working in France is just like Living in France. It takes an a real commitment to work, settle in and succeed in Paris. Start networking long before you arrive... even if you are just researching the possibility of getting a job in Paris. And once you arrive, others in Paris won't come looking for you. It's your job to find expats, groups and professional organizations. But make it fun. Gravitate to the things you love, and you'll start to build a social network that reaches far beyond other expats.

4. Educate Yourself on the Overall Work Environment

Research the Parisian companies that are in your industry and have a presence in Paris, and narrow your options.

List of companies based in Paris. Also consider the Economy of Paris and overall Economy of France.

5. Consider How Close To Work You Want To Live in Paris

In an her article Ten Top Tips for Purchasing a Paris Apartment, Stephanie Freedman advises that "some people say, 'location, location, location.' We say, 'Intuition, intuition, intuition.' You need to have a feeling for the apartment you buy -- even if it's not in the area you originally thought you wanted, or it doesn't look like what you thought you wanted. If it strongly appeals to you, that's one of the best indicators you can have, and you should trust your instincts (the coup de coeur at the doorsill)."

Renting in Paris
Properties in France

6. Consider the experience of expats already in France

One expat in Paris wrote: "My work was still busy. I work in Finance so maybe I was unrealistice in that dream, but it was interesting to work in different financial markets. It took longer than I expected to relearn French, but I was able to communicate with my holiday French from day 1. The classes in Paris are not as good as Alliance Francaise in Sydney. The French are very proud of their language and are willing to help you in English if you attempt it in French first."

7. Think About How You Will Get to Work in Paris

A great explanation of the Paris Rail System can be found on http://parisbytrain.com/.

Get your oyster card for "bus, Tube, tram, DLR, London Overground and most National Rail services in London."

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000. Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Some of Joshua's more popular articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and 5 Best Places to Live in Spain. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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First Published: Nov 14, 2013

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