1. #1
    Avatar de AshRed
    Ash 30 ans

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    France
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    My WHV will expire at the beginning of 2023, I would like to stay indefinitely and create a life in France. (I am Australia) what are the options , of any? Am I able to transfer to a different working permit?

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  3. #2
    Avatar de Rheline
    Rhéline 36 ans

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    Bordeaux, France
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    Hello. I was in the same situation, I did a two year WHV and wanted to stay. Unfortunately, your options are super limited. Unless you have a very special skilled job and your employer is willing to go through a lot of hassle to keep you, a work permit is difficult to get. As I understand it, your employer has to prove there was no French person available for the job, the paperwork takes several months to complete, they have to pay a special fee or tax of several hundred euros, and usually you have to go back to your country in the meantime. For me, all this wasn't possible.
    To be able to stay, the only option I found after months of looking into all the options was going back to university, which I hated and would not have done otherwise, but I managed to get three more years of visa out of it (first year normal Masters 1 but didn't write my thesis, second year got my visa renewed and did only my thesis to validate that Masters 1, third year got renewed to do Masters 2 but I never went back to uni I hated it so much.) At least I got to stay in France. And during that time I got lucky and met the love of my life and got married... and so got to stay in France.
    I'm not sure that my path is the easiest to follow . Is going back to school an option for you, or does your employer really really want to keep you?
    Good luck.


  4. #3
    Avatar de AshRed
    Ash 30 ans

    Location
    France
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    Message de Rheline
    Hello. I was in the same situation, I did a two year WHV and wanted to stay. Unfortunately, your options are super limited. Unless you have a very special skilled job and your employer is willing to go through a lot of hassle to keep you, a work permit is difficult to get. As I understand it, your employer has to prove there was no French person available for the job, the paperwork takes several months to complete, they have to pay a special fee or tax of several hundred euros, and usually you have to go back to your country in the meantime. For me, all this wasn't possible.
    To be able to stay, the only option I found after months of looking into all the options was going back to university, which I hated and would not have done otherwise, but I managed to get three more years of visa out of it (first year normal Masters 1 but didn't write my thesis, second year got my visa renewed and did only my thesis to validate that Masters 1, third year got renewed to do Masters 2 but I never went back to uni I hated it so much.) At least I got to stay in France. And during that time I got lucky and met the love of my life and got married... and so got to stay in France.
    I'm not sure that my path is the easiest to follow . Is going back to school an option for you, or does your employer really really want to keep you?
    Good luck.
    Wow! Rheline thankyou so much for your response. As you know finding this kind of info is surprisingly difficult!
    Unfortunately I don't have skills that would make an employer want to go through that process as I'm just working random season jobs at the moment. So I suppose that leaves just the option is to go back to university. How was it enrolling in uni as a foreigner? And how does it work in terms of paying for it? Also are there specific things you need to study to qualify for the visa? Also did you have to return to your motherland in the meantime?

    It's amazing how difficult it is to remain here for genuine reasons.

    Appreciate your help <3

  5. #4
    Avatar de Rheline
    Rhéline 36 ans

    Location
    Bordeaux, France
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    57
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    Message de AshRed
    Wow! Rheline thankyou so much for your response. As you know finding this kind of info is surprisingly difficult!
    Unfortunately I don't have skills that would make an employer want to go through that process as I'm just working random season jobs at the moment. So I suppose that leaves just the option is to go back to university. How was it enrolling in uni as a foreigner? And how does it work in terms of paying for it? Also are there specific things you need to study to qualify for the visa? Also did you have to return to your motherland in the meantime?

    It's amazing how difficult it is to remain here for genuine reasons.

    Appreciate your help <3
    Hello,

    Big disclaimer : I applied for a student visa in 2017. In five years, procedures might have changed, but also after having gone through applications and renewal procedures for working holiday visa, student visa, and private/family life visa, some aspects might have gotten mixed up in my head. So I will answer as best as I can, but consult an official source. Already, the student visa is much easier to find information on (and renew) because, unlike WHV, everyone knows about it and you won't be the only one. You can probably find forums specifically for student visa that will have better and more up to date info too.



    There are restrictions on what you can study. I remember specifically that it has to be at a higher level than your current education. In my case, I had a bachelors degree/licence, so I had to go do a masters, I couldn't for example have done a second bachelors or done a CAP level (CAP baker, CAP cheese-maker etc) which might have been more fun 🙂 The program you choose has to be 'qualifying' but not necessarily leading to a diploma. (For example, if you don't speak enough French to follow uni courses, I *think* you can get a student visa to study French but it's not a very long-term solution... Also be careful that whatever you choose gives you a Visa long séjour valant titre de séjour Etudiant, not a Visa long séjour TEMPORAIRE étudiant, which cannot be renewed and does not allow you to work)



    Applying to uni in France is much more straightforward than in Canada. First, it is free to apply! I applied to three universities in different cities that I was interested in living in, and got accepted to all. I did have good grades, but learned later that actually they aren't really selective, I think they pretty much accept everyone (although this might be changing, might depend on the program etc). I have a bachelors in International Development (multidisciplinary with courses in sociology, anthropology, geography, economics, political science etc etc), and applied for other fields within the social sciences like Anthropology, this cross over didn't seem to be a problem.


    Collecting all the paperwork for your visa application is time consuming and a bit expensive, but at least the requirements are clear and easy to find. For example, I am French Canadian so didn't need it (but still had to prove I had been scolarized in French), but you will have to take a French language test. If you don't speak enough French to follow classes, there might be some programs, probably in Paris, with classes in English but probably not at the cheap public universities. You also need to get your... school grade notes (forget the name in English sorry) translated, but by an translater certified to translate official documents. Not cheap - in France they squeeze it all onto one page but mine was about ten pages long. I was a bit mad I had to pay someone to translate things like Geography of development into Géographie du développement 🙂 and the funniest, my bachelors degree certificate is entirely in LATIN, and they made me translate that too!!! And your birth certificate, luckily mine was already bilingual. Can't remember which of these were required for the university application and which for the visa application specifically. They will also ask for proof of revenue, don't remember the amount by month. I had money saved up so my bank statement worked. Possibly proof of housing too.



    Paiement for the studies, also easy, unlike in Canada where it is super expensive for foreign students,here we pay the same tuition fees as locals (as of 2017), which is about 300-350€ per year in a public university.



    Unfortunately you do have to go back to your country of origin to get the actual visa, but this can be done quite quickly. While in France, I had already collected all the paperwork and official documents, already been accepted to university, already booked an appointment at the French embassy of Montreal online etc. I flew back to Canada, had my appointment the following day to drop off my file, then I think two weeks later they contacted me to come pick up my passport/visa. So it's quick if you've done all the work, but an additional cost to factor in.


    Also keep in mind with a student visa, you are only allowed to work 60% of a full time job next to your studies - if memory serves this is about 960 hours per year. You can have a job of 10-15 hours a week, or work full time for half the year, but you won't be allowed to work more so take that into account. And of course as a student you don't qualify for unemployment benefits etc even if you have cumulated them for the last two years. So it was a bit hard on the budget. I did qualify for APL as a foreign student (financial help for paying rent), and did get accepted into student housing which was great because I was in Bordeaux and affordable housing is impossible to come by there, but I think that was all.



    Lastly, I don't know what level of education you are looking at, but there are options after if you have a higher education diploma from France - like visas for finding a job in your field after your studies, and it can be an important point in your file when applying for citizenship eventually. I haven't gotten that far yet... but I have been living in France since 2015, so far so good 🙂 Every year was a real struggle to find a strategy to stay, but happy to be here, hopefully for good this time.



    It is a slow day at work today so had time to write all this, hope it helps whoever is in this same situation 🙂

    Rhéline


  6. #5
    Avatar de AshRed
    Ash 30 ans

    Location
    France
    Messages
    4
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    0
    Message de Rheline
    Hello,

    Big disclaimer : I applied for a student visa in 2017. In five years, procedures might have changed, but also after having gone through applications and renewal procedures for working holiday visa, student visa, and private/family life visa, some aspects might have gotten mixed up in my head. So I will answer as best as I can, but consult an official source. Already, the student visa is much easier to find information on (and renew) because, unlike WHV, everyone knows about it and you won't be the only one. You can probably find forums specifically for student visa that will have better and more up to date info too.



    There are restrictions on what you can study. I remember specifically that it has to be at a higher level than your current education. In my case, I had a bachelors degree/licence, so I had to go do a masters, I couldn't for example have done a second bachelors or done a CAP level (CAP baker, CAP cheese-maker etc) which might have been more fun 🙂 The program you choose has to be 'qualifying' but not necessarily leading to a diploma. (For example, if you don't speak enough French to follow uni courses, I *think* you can get a student visa to study French but it's not a very long-term solution... Also be careful that whatever you choose gives you a Visa long séjour valant titre de séjour Etudiant, not a Visa long séjour TEMPORAIRE étudiant, which cannot be renewed and does not allow you to work)



    Applying to uni in France is much more straightforward than in Canada. First, it is free to apply! I applied to three universities in different cities that I was interested in living in, and got accepted to all. I did have good grades, but learned later that actually they aren't really selective, I think they pretty much accept everyone (although this might be changing, might depend on the program etc). I have a bachelors in International Development (multidisciplinary with courses in sociology, anthropology, geography, economics, political science etc etc), and applied for other fields within the social sciences like Anthropology, this cross over didn't seem to be a problem.


    Collecting all the paperwork for your visa application is time consuming and a bit expensive, but at least the requirements are clear and easy to find. For example, I am French Canadian so didn't need it (but still had to prove I had been scolarized in French), but you will have to take a French language test. If you don't speak enough French to follow classes, there might be some programs, probably in Paris, with classes in English but probably not at the cheap public universities. You also need to get your... school grade notes (forget the name in English sorry) translated, but by an translater certified to translate official documents. Not cheap - in France they squeeze it all onto one page but mine was about ten pages long. I was a bit mad I had to pay someone to translate things like Geography of development into Géographie du développement 🙂 and the funniest, my bachelors degree certificate is entirely in LATIN, and they made me translate that too!!! And your birth certificate, luckily mine was already bilingual. Can't remember which of these were required for the university application and which for the visa application specifically. They will also ask for proof of revenue, don't remember the amount by month. I had money saved up so my bank statement worked. Possibly proof of housing too.



    Paiement for the studies, also easy, unlike in Canada where it is super expensive for foreign students,here we pay the same tuition fees as locals (as of 2017), which is about 300-350€ per year in a public university.



    Unfortunately you do have to go back to your country of origin to get the actual visa, but this can be done quite quickly. While in France, I had already collected all the paperwork and official documents, already been accepted to university, already booked an appointment at the French embassy of Montreal online etc. I flew back to Canada, had my appointment the following day to drop off my file, then I think two weeks later they contacted me to come pick up my passport/visa. So it's quick if you've done all the work, but an additional cost to factor in.


    Also keep in mind with a student visa, you are only allowed to work 60% of a full time job next to your studies - if memory serves this is about 960 hours per year. You can have a job of 10-15 hours a week, or work full time for half the year, but you won't be allowed to work more so take that into account. And of course as a student you don't qualify for unemployment benefits etc even if you have cumulated them for the last two years. So it was a bit hard on the budget. I did qualify for APL as a foreign student (financial help for paying rent), and did get accepted into student housing which was great because I was in Bordeaux and affordable housing is impossible to come by there, but I think that was all.



    Lastly, I don't know what level of education you are looking at, but there are options after if you have a higher education diploma from France - like visas for finding a job in your field after your studies, and it can be an important point in your file when applying for citizenship eventually. I haven't gotten that far yet... but I have been living in France since 2015, so far so good 🙂 Every year was a real struggle to find a strategy to stay, but happy to be here, hopefully for good this time.



    It is a slow day at work today so had time to write all this, hope it helps whoever is in this same situation 🙂

    Rhéline
    Thanks again for such a thorough response, it gives me a lot to weigh up. It seems that If you want to stay you have to REALLY want to stay. Given that I'm from Australia (60hrs of travel for a return flight) it's making me reconsider.

    It seems that's its very difficult to just contact some Fenech governing body and get official answers to some of this stuff? Bizzare

  7. #6
    Avatar de AshRed
    Ash 30 ans

    Location
    France
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    4
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    Hi Rheline, hope you are well.
    I have decided to return to Australia and come back to France on a student visa. I have fallen crazily in love with France and I have to come back. You mentioned it's potentially possible to get a student visa to study french, as my french is very basic following a uni course in french wouldn't be possible at this point. Do you know anyone who has staying longer term after coming 5o study french.

  8. #7
    Avatar de Rheline
    Rhéline 36 ans

    Location
    Bordeaux, France
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    57
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    Hello,
    No I don't personally know anyone who got a student visa for studying French. But if you google student visa france language school you should find some more information, as well as on your embassy website. A two minute search found this information about pre requisites for example:
    To apply for a student visa in France, you must enroll in an intensive course (with more than 20 hours of class per week) for a period longer than 3 months.
    In order to obtain this visa, you will need to provide your passport, a registration certificate from the school you are registered with (this must be a course of at least 20 classes/week), and justify that you have sufficient financial means to support yourself for one year, as well as have a French bank account. If you are a student over the age of 28, you will need to prove that you are covered for health and civil insurance, as you won’t be covered by the French social security system.
    Good luck...

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