France has created its global name in the education sector and has become one of the most preferred destinations for students for both the undergraduate and graduate level. The major reason for France becoming a global name in the market is the quality of education France universities provide in domains such as Management and Business courses.

France is home to some of the top-notch universities and offers an excellent quality of student life in Paris. It is also one of the most important aspects for students seeking education in France.

Steps to get France Visa

Students who desire to visit France to study must be aware of all the information about the entire visa regime of the country like the France visa eligibility, France visa rules and requirements in order to avoid Visa Refusal.  

Types of France Student Visa

The France Student visas are issued under 4 categories depending on the duration of your course. The 4 student visa categories are listed below:

  • Short Stay Student Visa

As the name suggests the short stay student visa is meant for those students who are enrolled in a short term course and plan to study in France for a maximum period of 3 months. This type of visa is best suitable for students who want to enrol in any language course or any other short term course in France.

A short stay student visa cannot be renewed or transformed into a long stay visa. The visa is also known as ‘Schengen short stay visa’.

  • Student Examination Visa

This visa is meant for those students who want to sit for an entrance exam in order to get admission into an educational institute in France. The validity of this visa is 90 days. In case the student applied for the entrance exam clears the exam and gets enrolled in the institution, the student examination visa will be converted into a long stay visa. Such students are required to apply for a renewable residence card which is valid for 1 year.

  • Temporary Long Stay Student Visa

The temporary long stay student visa is issued to those students who wish to study in in France for a period of 3-6 months. This visa is again a non-renewable visa and students do not require a residence card during their stay in France.

  • Long Stay Student Visa

If the duration of your study course is more than 6 months then you will need to apply for a long stay student visa.  This visa will be valid for the entire duration of your course. Usually, this visa is issued for a period of 3 years for a bachelor’s degree program, 2 years for a master’s program and 4 years for a PhD. For this type of visa you don’t need to apply for a residence permit, the visa itself acts as a residence permit card for students to stay in France.

Documents Requirement

  • Passport with a validity of at least 6 months, with a minimum 2 blank pages.
  • 2 passport size colour photographs. (Photo Specifications)
  • Acceptance letter from the university where you intend to study in France, along with the course duration and dates from when the course will commence.
  • A print out of your Campus France ID number
  • Cover letter explaining your study project along with your CV.
  • Proof of sufficient funds to cover your tuition fee along with other costs of living in France.
  • Medical insurance proof with coverage valid in France.
  • Return flight ticket copy (if you are studying for 6 months or less in France)
  • OFII Form (Office Francais de Immigration et de Integration)
  • Academic Transcripts of your degrees, diploma, certificates etc.

Steps to apply for France Student Visa

To apply for a France student visa, the applicant must follow the following steps:

Step 1: Set up online account on Campus France Website

To begin with your France Student visa application form, the first step is to create an account on the Campus France website. Once you have completed the registration, you will get your unique Campus France Registration Number and your login credentials.

Step 2: Send your application and documents to Campus France

The step requires you to send your file to the assigned Campus France office to request an appointment for an academic interview.

If you have paid online:

  • A photocopy of your application of official admission letter
  • Photocopy of proof of online payment
  • Campus France admission form

Step 3: Request an appointment with the Consulate

To request an appointment with the consulate you must be accepted by Campus France to attend the interview. For this reason you must book an interview appointment 30 days after the date on which you have completed your online Campus France application. 

Step 4: Appear for the interview

To attend the interview the applicant need to personally visit the Campus France. Remember to carry all the essential documents with you, because you never know, they might ask you for that. It is advisable to carry one set of original documents and one set of photocopies of all documents. During the interview you will need to explain your study plans in France. You will also need to carry the Campus France Fee payment.

Step 5: Wait for the decision

Once you have completed all the above steps, the Campus France will send the preliminary offer to the university you are applying for and French consulates. They will analyse your file and communicate their decision.

Note that Indians students applying for a France Student visa will be required to provide biometrics as a part of the application process. Biometrics (fingerprints and digital photograph) are basically extra identification that few countries use for security reasons.

Also Read: Common Reasons for France Visa Rejection

Processing Time

Be sure to allow some extra time for your visa application. Waiting times for the appointments and for processing applications will vary depending on your nationality and the time of the year. You should apply at least 3 months before our course starts. Finally, after you’ve applied, you can expect that you will wait for about 14 to 21 days for the decision.

So, now that has provided you with all the necessary information, are you all set to start the visa application process.

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