Cost of living in France is one of the most crucial aspects to be considered for anyone planning to move to this country. Generally, students are looking to cover their living costs independently. The amount spent on meals, living, and travelling varies mainly between individuals, and cities they are residing in. For instance, Paris can have its rent prices six times of what it would be in smaller towns.
To have a brief idea of the cost of living in France, the cost of living is 3.34% higher than what it would be in the United States of America. (Numbeo)
But, this doesn’t say it all, as France has rental prices 37.67% lower than that of the USA. Hence, we need to look closer into these values and take a more detailed look at the high costs that a student would generally bear.
New York vs Paris
Considering the vast difference between prices between all the cities within the USA and France, it would make more sense to compare the two economic capitals in the country.
You would need $ 7800 in New York to enjoy the standard of life you would have in Paris with only $ 5213.55.
Rent and Housing Costs in France
As mentioned in the article above, the cost of rent varies across the country. On average, the rent prices in France are €659 (~ $728) for a one-bedroom apartment in the City Centre. Meanwhile, the costs come down to €514 (~ $568) outside the City Centre. For most major cities, it would be beneficial to go house hunting a couple of months before moving in, while a few weeks is enough for smaller towns. September and October is generally a more difficult time to search for houses, as many international students come in for their studies.
Travelling Costs in France
Public transport costs are cheaper in France when compared to the United States. Local one-way tickets cost €1.6 on an average, while a monthly pass would cost €51. A new car (VW Golf 1.4 or similar) would cost about €20000 in France, that is approximately 13% higher than the USA. But, gasoline prices are considerably low in the USA. One litre would cost you €1.5 in France.
Cost of Education in France
Public Education flourishes in France. The state pays for every child’s education from 6 to 16 years old. The only issue is that public schools are not bi-lingual. Hence, for parents looking to enrol their children in international schools should account for higher costs in this parameter. Costs vary to a large extent here too. Schools fees start from about €2250 per annum. As far as universities are concerned, state universities are very reasonably priced, and reasonable also. Another point to be noted is that international students do not need to pay higher fees, as it is in some countries. A bachelors (or equivalent) would cost €200 at a public university and between €3000 to €10000 at a private university.
Cost of Healthcare in France
Like education, healthcare also receives a reasonably high amount of subsidization. State health insurance is available to everyone staying in France for more than three months. The French Social Security system duns this insurance (called PUMA). This insurance covers about 70% of the medical costs, and in some cases, even 100% of the costs.
Cost of Utilities and Groceries in France
Not going into precise details, the average cost for an 85 square metre apartment is €160 per month. These costs are very reasonable when compared to the rest of Europe. The monthly budget for groceries per person should be €220 to €290.