Traveling to France


Looking forward to travel to France and settle there? Find all that you need to know on relating procedures in this article.

France is a very popular country, whether with European Union, European Economic Area of Swiss nationals. So if you are also planning to move there, you should be aware of specific travel formalities, especially if you are going to make a long stay. Note, however, that the following information may be amended by French authorities. So make sure to inquire on these with relating authorities beforehand.

Conditions for EU and EEA nationals

Nationals of the UE, EEA, Switzerland and Croatia are allowed to live and work in France provided they are in possession of a valid identity card and passport and they are not considered as a threat to law and order. In other words, they are allowed to settle in the country, whether to work or set up a business without requiring any work or resident permit.

Moreover, you are still allowed to live in the country even if you lose your job or in case of incapacity within the first five years. However, you better confirm this issue with relating authorities. In some cases, your resident rights may depend on specific conditions.

Once these five years have been completed, you may request for a permanent stay permit.

Non-European nationals

If you do not come from the UE, EEA, Switzerland, Croatia, Andorra, Monaco, the Vatican or San Marino, you must be in possession of a valid passport and apply for a long stay permit to be allowed to settle in France.

Note that this visa is to be requested before traveling. Moreover, you are required to produce a complete application form as its issue remains at the authorities discretion. Documents to be produced generally vary according to the purpose of stay. So make sure to inquire with the French embassy or consulate in your home country beforehand.

Once you have lived for five uninterrupted legal years in France, you are allowed to apply for a EU Long Stay Permit.


Nationals of some countries, who do not come from the EU, EEA, Switzerland, Croatia, Andorra, Monaco, Vatican or San Marino, may be eligible to exemptions provided they are in possession of a resident permit, or a TIR or a DCEM.

The resident permit is intended for foreigners (non-French) complying with all conditions to be allowed to stay permanently in France.

The DCEM is intended for minors living in France and who wish to travel abroad.

Finally, the TIR is an identity document intended for less 18 years old people who are born in France to foreigners. This allows them to make regular stays in the country.

 Useful links:

Applying for a long stay visa
Minors – Applying for a Republican Identity (TIR) or a travel document (DCEM)
Ministry of Internal Affairs – Prefectures
Paris Police Prefecture

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