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Make friends in France as a international student

France has the chance to be the fourth most popular country in the world for international students, with thousands of Americans, British and Australians coming here to study.

The most popular places to study for international students were Paris at 59,179, followed by Versailles at 26,588, and Lyon at 24,150. Other notable cities included Creteil at 21,500, Lille at 15,500, and Toulouse at 15,000.

If you are one of them, you are maybe wondering how to have a memorable stay in France... One of the key of it is to make good friends with whom you will spend your best moments!

The question can be idiot for some of you or essential for others: How to make friends in France ?

As a foreign student, It can be hard to make friends with French students, especially when they have already established solid friendship groups. Unfortunately, some strangers can feel the divide between them and French students. But in general, if you make an effort to mix like joining associations and sports clubs, then you will get to know lots of French students easier.

One in three international students feel alone... We don’t want you to be that one. Here are some tips to integrate as best possible !

Take advantage from the start

Take advantage of the first few weeks of university as much as possible. Friendship groups won’t have fully formed yet, so this is often the best time to make friends. While not all students have travelled thousands of miles for their studies, most will have left home for the first time and will be just as keen to find a friendly face as you.

Make friends with students from other parts of France (not the town where you’re studying) or from other Francophone countries. These students are also studying far away from their own families and friends, and are likely to be more receptive to meeting new people

Go to as many events as you can

While you are in France it is important that you take advantage of as much of the culture as you can. It is truly amazing and there is so very much that you can experience. It would be such a shame to leave and not have enjoyed it all. While it is true that you need to take the time to study and learn what you’ve come to learn, this doesn’t mean that there is not still plenty of time to enjoy yourself, too.

With you will find the latest events on the most famous cities for foreign students like Paris, Bordeaux, Strasbourg… It can also help you to find the best restaurants, big events to not miss and unusual places for going out for example.

If you are looking for more cultural events, you can check the website lists most of them in the entire country.

Try out new activities like discovering the French "Artisanat" craft with the website Le Bon Atelier.

Try house-sharing

Opting for this student halls is a great way to live close to lots of other students. Most properties will have shared communal spaces to hang out in, and lots boast resident social committees who arrange fun meetups for all the students.

Having a roommate is also an accommodation option that is available for you. Many roommate situations can be found throughout France, and not only does this give you the chance to cut back on some of the money that you spend on rent. The chance to live with other people also helps you socialize easier as you meet people that are living with you, their friends and so on and so forth.

You can easily find an accommodation that is looking for a roommate or post your own announce to recruit roommates on

Otherwise, if you want to have an accommodation with international people, you can find it on where you will be able to choose the language you want to speak. If you prefer, with a bit of luck, you can find roommates that speak your language.

Participate to university activites

Universities organize shows and hold conferences, seminars, parties and sporting and other outdoor activities as part of the student lifestyle. While the things that are put together will vary according to the college that you have chosen to attend, you can be certain there is a calendar filled with activities that can entertain all. Colleges want their students to learn but they also want them to have a great time in the process. Life cannot be serious all of the time. All of the activities planned by colleges and universities offer plenty of fun for you.

Try Dating Apps !

If you are already bored of your new French friends, don’t worry, you can meet a bunch of new ones with apps !

You may now Tinder, the most famous app for finding a soulmate. But if you want to try new apps. You can always try Bumble !

This app is known at the international but not a lot of frenchies know this app. So you may discover a lot more foreigners like you in the city. It can be really helpful to talk to international students like you who came here in France and to hear their own story. Bumble is not only meant for finding your soulmate, you can also look for a good friend or a professional encounter. The particularity of this app is that the first move has to be done by the lady. Women first !

Get a Buddy

Living in a different country, whose language you might not even speak, can be a bit terrifying in the beginning. Especially when you need to get all that bureaucratic paperwork done before you can pick up your studies.

Buddies are local students that help you take your first steps in the new city.

These services are usually offered by the International Office of your university or your local ESN section. This is a unique opportunity to not only get the best help possible, but to also immediately form a friendship with a resident.

Join Facebook groups

If you want to know what’s going on around you, checking a social media like Facebook is always a great answer. There are plenty of Facebook groups and pages dedicated to events, parties or hobbies. Maybe you have a skill set that someone requires, or somebody is giving recommendations for a cool new spot to hang out at. Try to move beyond the usual Erasmus Facebook groups and broaden your perception of things to do in your Erasmus city ! If you will study in Paris SOCIALIZING WITH INTERNATIONALS IN PARIS is a really famous page on MeetUp with more than 30 000 active members.

I hope all of these tips will help you through your stay in France !

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