You’re all set to go, you have figured out the administrative processes, you have your visa, plane ticket and apartment and the last thing on your mind is what to do when you arrive if you know no one. Are you wondering if it will be hard to integrate?
Studying abroad definitely brings up new challenges, between breaking out of your comfort zone and traveling alone, one of the toughest challenges might be making new friends in an unknown place.
Arriving to a new place is never easy, let alone a new country, where you will encounter a new culture, university, mindsets and customs. And although these should be the enriching points of your exchange, they are also the barriers to making friends abroad. Specially coming to France where people tend to have a reputation of being tough with foreigners, you’ll have to speak in French and you have many cultural differences.
French or international ?
It can seem easy to spend time and make friendships with people from your same nationality or who are similar to you, as it can help you feel at ease and closer to home, but a semester abroad is the perfect opportunity for students to discover a new side of themselves.
Creating friendships with the local students of your host university will only enhance the experience of being far away from home. It will allow you to be face to a different perspective of not only the culture, but the city and you might even learn a new language. Integration with French students can seem hard at first but it’s important to always arrive with an open mind and be prepared to leave the comfort zone.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a shy person or a very outgoing one, meeting new people in a new country and in a probably different language can get nerve wracking for anyone. You will encounter very contrasting mindsets, different cultures and way of doing things and this is exactly what will make this experience so exciting and enriching! We’re here to help you start this journey with the right foot, we’ll share our tips and secrets on how to meet the local student community and foreign students like you. You’ll be able to feel at home from the moment you arrive.
🥐 Getting the French vibe
You’ll probably want to soak in the best parts of the French culture and feel like a true local.
But feeling at ease in your new home takes more than picking up the baguette at your local boulangerie or sitting at a café every afternoon.
Through our guide, you’ll find out some of the most important faux pas and discover some hacks to make your life more french and way easier.
How and where to meet new people
Social media used in France
Facebook groups for exchange students
Life hacks for students
Going out in France