Finding a good & interesting internship in France

Every year, numerous companies, located in France, offer thousands of internships in all job sectors and at all levels to French and international students. These internships are great opportunities that allow students to gain business, international, cultural and even linguistic experience.

Where can you find an internship?

Many student and professional websites offer numerous internship opportunities for everyone. Here are a few recognized websites:

- Infostages



Le magazine L’Etudiant  

You will also find internship offers on the websites of French companies:

·        Energy    EDF




·        Finance    CREDIT LYONNAIS




·        Luxury industry   LVMH 


·        Supermarket sector CARREFOUR


·        Transportation industry SNCF


·        Aviation industry EADS


·        Pharmaceutical industry SANOFI - AVENTIS


·        Telecommunications FRANCE TELECOM Orange


·        Food industry DANONE


·        Insurance industry AXA


·        Cosmetics industry L’OREAL



·        Automobile industry        PEUGEOT




·        Advertising industry PUBLICIS


·        Hotel industry ACCOR


(Non exhaustive list of major French Companies)

What are the conditions to participate in the France-Canada agreement on youth mobility?

In 2003, and then in 2013, the French and Canadian governments signed an agreement on youth exchange programs. It allows you to travel to France to acquire university education, professional experience, to complete an internship, and to perfect your knowledge of the French language, culture, and society. It also simplifies the administrative procedures required for your entry and your stay. What is more, you don’t have to pay any administration fees.

To benefit from this agreement,

  • You must be between the ages of 18 and 35 upon submission of application;

  • You must be a Canadian citizen residing in Canada upon submission of application;

  • You must be in possession of a Canadian passport, valid for a minimum of three months after the completion of the visit;

  • You cannot obtain this visa, or two other types of visas in this agreement, more than once;

  • You must be financially stable for the duration of the visit.

What are the administrative procedures?

·        If you wish to do an internship in a company as part of your studies or of the program you are enrolled in, the terms and conditions of the internship must be included in the tripartite internship agreement signed by your Canadian university, the professional institution in France and you. If your internship is more than 3 months in duration, you also have to apply for a 3C visa which is entitled “company internship.” Below you will find the files you have to download in order to apply for your visa (visa application, internship agreement, list of required documents).

·        The internship agreement includes 11 compulsory clauses according to the French laws:

Ø      The tasks the intern is entrusted with must be defined in agreement with the goals of his post-secondary program.

Ø      The start date and the end date of the internship must be specified.

Ø      The maximum number of hours per week that the intern is expected to work.  Should the student be expected work nights or Sundays or on statutory holidays, the internship agreement must specify it.

Ø      The wage or salary earned by the intern and the methods of payment must be specified.

Ø      Any fringe benefits offered by the employer (meal plans, accommodation and reimbursement of expenses) must be specified.

Ø       The intern’s Social Security System and in particular work accident insurance  and the compulsory liability insurance must be specified.

Ø      The terms and conditions of training and professional supervision by the intern’s superior and the company must be specified.

Ø      The terms and conditions of delivery of the certificate of internship and the internship requirements concerning the program the intern is enrolled in must be specified.

Ø      The terms of suspension and termination of the internship agreement must be specified.

Ø      The conditions under which the intern is allowed to take time off.

Ø      The internal regulations of the company that the intern is expected to follow must be specified.

·        If you wish to travel to France for tourism and cultural purposes, all the while being authorized to work for financial support, and if you plan on staying more than 4 months, you must to apply for a Working Holiday Visa (3D visa) which you can download below.

What steps should I follow?

  • 1. You have to download the visa kit, and submit the required documents to the General Consulate of France of your jurisdiction, in accordance with your place of residence, as specified below.

You can submit your visa application at the earliest 3 months prior to your departure for France.

ATTENTION: Please refer to the websites of the Consulates General in order learn about the visa application process, i.e. booking appointments, mail-in dossiers, etc.

  • 2. For a stay longer than 6 months in duration (holders of a long-stay visa marked: « carte de séjour à solliciter »), you will have to contact the Prefecture in your area of residence within one month of your arrival in order to receive a temporary residency card.
    You must provide a proof of residency, a copy of your work contract by the DDTEFP for the 3A visas, proof of enrolment in a university for the 3B visas, an internship agreement for the 3C visas.
    At this time, you will have to undergo a medical examination by the
    OFII (Office Français de l’Immigration et de l’Intégration).

For candidates with 3D visas, you will have to go to the “Direction Départementale du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Formation professionnelle”, before you start working, to request a temporary work permit (APT).

Are you going to be paid for your internship?

Legally, internship is not considered to be a work contract. Therefore, you cannot claim a salary or a wage from the employer. However, depending on the duration of the internship, the employer may provide an internship reimbursement. 

If the internship is less than 2 months (40 days of work) in duration, a company is not under the obligation to pay an reimbursement but may do so, it if it is pleased with your work. 

Beyond 2 months, a company must offer you an internship reimbursement at a minimum of 554.40 euros per month.