The French economy in a few figures

  • A service economy

France is small in size, but remains a world economic power and can pride itself on still being the top tourist destination in the world. In 2014 some 84.7 million visitors discovered the country. It’s hardly surprising that France is primarily a service economy. Accounting for 63% of jobs, the service sector is far larger than either the primary sector (agriculture and fishing, 4%) or industry (12%).

France is the sixth largest economic power in the world after the US, Japan, Germany, China and Great Britain. But it ranks just 20th in terms of GDP (Gross Domestic Product) per capita, barely above the European average.

  • The €uro, a single currency

In 2002 France adopted the €uro, the European single currency used today in 19 EU countries. Officially a €uro is worth 6.55957 French Francs (the country’s former currency). For the last few years the value of the €uro has tended to rise, thus curbing EU exports. This problem directly affects France, which still ranked sixth in the world among exporting countries in 2013.

  • The cost of living remains reasonable

Although unemployment remains high (an average of 10.4% in 2014) and difficult to combat, France remains a rich country and claims that poverty levels have fallen by 60% over the last 30 years. The average monthly income was 1,675 €uros in 2014. In terms of the relationship between incomes and consumer prices, the cost of living is comparable to other countries in Western Europe. Note, however, that living in Paris can cost between 10 and 20% more than in the rest of France.

  • Some sample prices
  • 1 €
    A baguette (French loaf of bread)
  • 5 €
    Sandwich
  • 1 €
    Bottle of mineral water
  • 1.5 €
    Can of soda
  • 3 €
    One hour in an internet café
  • 1 - 2 €
    A national daily newspaper
  • 15 €
    simple restaurant lunch
  • 8 €
    An international telephone card
  • 1.80 €
    A metro (subway) ticket

Student testimonials

Shelby (USA)
"Everyone at Eurocentres La Rochelle is very knowledgeable and helpful. George and Valerie are super nice and are willing to help you with anything."
Carol (Brazil)
"The teachers are well prepared, the lessons are very interactive and the students are really nice. I have met people from all over the world. I am having the best time here in Paris and would strongly recommend Eurocentres for anyone who wishes to learn french."
Vaishnavi Kumar (India)
"IFALPES is definitely the best place to learn & appreciate the language and the people."
Harry & Janice (USA)
"We have had several immersion language experiences, and the ILP is by far the best we have encountered. We appreciated the friendly staff, small size of classes, and the flexible modular schedule adaptable to our ongoing outside profes-sional commitments."
Eva (Sweden)
"I’m content with my 2 week stay at Millefeuille and I think that I’ve made good progress."
Juan (Colombia)
"Planète Langues is probably the best place to learn a new language, make friends and have a totally cool experience!"
Carlos
"My stay in Amboise was excellent, the inhabitants are very friendly and it is a great opportunity to learn the French language in a charming town."
Anastasia ( Russia)
"The lessons were excellent. These French lessons in Paris were really what i was looking for. Hope to come back soon!"
Jenny (Australia)
"My experience at CREA-Langues has been outstanding, not only from the language point of view, but for the opportunity to engage with staff and other students informally. The organisation and attending to detail is simply superb. I have every intention to return. "
Pavel (Russia)
"I've had the best experience at Regency School because the teachers were very professional and i thank them all."
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