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Trying to move from US to europe, probably Paris, looking for advice

KingJulien

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I've got a well-paying corporate job, but I'm planning to trade that in for a really low-wage job in an awesome city
- I've sorta decided on Paris, just because. I've got some decent savings already and don't really have any time constraints, but I'm thinking I'd like to leave within a year or so; it's boring here. I'm in a (relatively) high wage / low cost situation right now, so saving is pretty easy. I definitely want to take either a few semesters of regular French classes, or an intensive course - my Spanish vocabulary is ok which will help with that a bit.

Anyways, I have to figure out:
  • How to support myself - this is the big one, as it's gonna be kinda tough not speaking the language well (I don't at all now, so it's whatever I can pick up between now and then). I think tutoring might be the easiest, but I have to figure out how to do that. My skills are in communication/writing and IT.
  • Where to live
  • Budget (how much I should save before I go)
  • How to meet people there - this is not a really a big deal since I'm pretty friendly, but it'd be a plus to go with a program or something so I'm not just moving to a foreign country alone.
  • What else I'm forgetting on this list.

Any advice would be fantastic, especially with the first bullet point. I've been to France before, but only for a few days, but I did live in Barcelona for awhile.
 

Millerp

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Have you looked into getting a work permit/visa?

Necessary to work legally and very difficult to obtain.
 

stevent

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Have you looked into getting a work permit/visa?
Necessary to work legally and very difficult to obtain.

Yeah this.

And you're not gonna find a job easily. Better idea would be to get your corporate job to transfer you to the Paris office. Otherwise your main job will probably be trying to promote for clubs and that's like .4 euro a flyer that someone goes to the club with
 

KingJulien

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Quote:
Have you looked into getting a work permit/visa?
Necessary to work legally and very difficult to obtain.

My original plan was to do one of those teaching English abroad programs, which I'd be down for and would provide the visa, but I don't really think that's an option in France. A big part of the reason of why I made this post is that I'm not sure how to go about doing that. I don't really mind making nothing since I can easily have 6+ months of my current wage saved up before I leave, but I do need some employment.

My company has an office over there but I think it's in some shitty suburb I don't want to be in.
 
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ter1413

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Joe Camel

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Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but unless you have an EU passport, i'd say that your chances of obtaining legal work are somewhere between slim and none.
 

KingJulien

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So there are no programs of any sort like there are for teaching English in most Asian countries (including volunteer work of any sort)? This makes sense as I don't see a first world country having a lot of need for something like that but it doesn't hurt to ask.

It looks like my options then would be:
  • Get transferred from the company I work for
  • Go to school there

Nothing else?
 

ter1413

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US citizens planning to enter and visit France as tourists do not require a visa and are permitted to remain in the country a maximum of 3 months (90 days). Americans planning to stay in France for more than 3 months, or for purposes other than tourism, must have a long-stay visa (visa de long séjour) in their passports on arrival in France. They must apply for the appropriate long-stay visa issued in the US at the French Consulate having jurisdiction where they reside. It is not possible for an American to come to France as a tourist and then change his/her status to that of a worker, a student or a resident. The French authorities will require such individuals to return to the US to apply for the appropriate visa. Bearers of long-stay visas must apply for a Carte de séjour within a week of their arrival.

A visa applicant will be required to submit an application form accompanied by supporting documents: a valid passport, several passport-type photographs and proof that the applicant can financially support himself and any dependents who may accompany him during his stay in France. Proof of medical insurance with coverage in France is often a prerequisite for issuance of a visa. In some cases, a police clearance record is required. Any applicant less than 18 years old will have to present a written authorization from his parents or guardian. Fees are charged for the issuance of all French visas.

In addition to the basic requirements, an American who wishes to work in France needs a work contract approved by the French Ministry of Labor. This means that the French employer is required to present the signed contract to the Ministry with a request for its approval. If and when the Ministry has approved the contract, it is forwarded to the Organization for International Migrations (O.M.I.), 44, rue Bargue, 75015 Paris, tel: 01.53.69.53.70, for transmission to the appropriate French Consulate in the U.S. The O.M.I. charges the employer a fee for this service. The French Consulate will notify the American who can then proceed with visa formalities. A medical examination is required (within the last three months and usually by a doctor on a list prepared by the French Consulate); the visa applicant is expected to pay the doctor's fee.
For complete information on obtaining French visas, please consult the French Embassy’s website : (http://www.consulfrance-washington.org) or (http://www.ambafrance-us.org)

Also:
http://www.transitionsabroad.com/listings/work/articles/working_in_france_with_or_without_work_visa.shtml
 

Britalian

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One of the American edu affiliates? Have any contacts through linkedin etc?

I'd recommend joining one of the expats in France sites. I use an Italian one. They have many contributors with lots of experience and realistic advice.

I envy you and hope you pull it off. My dream city too.
 

KingJulien

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Quote:
One of the American edu affiliates? Have any contacts through linkedin etc?
I'd recommend joining one of the expats in France sites. I use an Italian one. They have many contributors with lots of experience and realistic advice.
I envy you and hope you pull it off. My dream city too.
Thanks. I figure I have time to plan, & resources only really constrained by how long I want to save up for, so I should be able to figure this out with some effort.

Ter1453, thanks, that article was actually tremendously helpful. Looks like teaching English is an option after all, especially since I have a journalism degree.
 
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bringusingoodale

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I can make this easy as hell:

If you are under 28 do it.

If you are 28 and over, don't do it, time to fall into your place in line and start the humdrum life.
 

KingJulien

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Quote:
I can make this easy as hell:
If you are under 28 do it.
If you are 28 and over, don't do it, time to fall into your place in line and start the humdrum life.

I'm 23. And @ Teger... I am aiming for at least conversational French skills before I move anywhere, and if I have to stay here another 6 months + to gain better proficiency before I leave, that's fine. And I think being a native speaker counts for something. It's not a great option but it's an option.
 
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stevent

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Quote:


 
I'm 23.  And @ Teger... I am aiming for at least conversational French skills before I move anywhere, and if I have to stay here another 6 months + to gain better proficiency before I leave, that's fine. And I think being a native speaker counts for something.  It's not a great option but it's an option.

Plenty of Americans already teaching in France, being a native speaker means nothing. And aren't you Asian? Europeans / Asians want white people teaching English
 

Piobaire

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If your current company has an office in Paris, so what it's in a shitty 'burb? As you can see moving there with the ability to work legally is daunting. Get your current company to help with the really hard part and then look for new work once you are there. There will probably be some time period you must stick with the current company but who cares? It's not like you're chained to the office desk in that shitty 'burb. You'll have all your free time to explore wherever you want.

Alternate plan: join the Mormon church and get assigned to France to do your mission.
 

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