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University of Lyon:

​Lyon Language and Culture

 - Fall

Lyon Immersion

- Fall
- Year

This guide was created to help you navigate the different aspects of travelling abroad as a UCEAP student. All important aspects of attending university in your host country are addressed here, including academic information, extension of UCEAP participation, cultural awareness, orientation, transportation, finances and much more.

Remember to also visit the Participants section of the UCEAP website for important information and deadlines.


Click a heading below to see section content.
Your UCEAP Network
 
 
 

Study Centers Abroad

UCEAP programs in Lyon is directed by a UC faculty member. The Study Center Director and staff at each site advise students on academic matters, assist with housing, plan field trips, and provide information on cultural opportunities.
 
Lyon Study Center
Université de Californie
16 Quai Claude Bernard
69365 Lyon, Cedex 07, France
Phone (calling from the U.S.): (011 33) 4 78 58 35 52
Phone (calling from Lyon): 04 78 58 35 52
 

Phone Number Codes

U.S. international code ............ 011
 (dial this to call from the U.S.)
France country code .............. 33
 
City code: Included in city phone number (drop the initial 0 when dialing from the U.S.)
 

Approximate Time Difference

Add 9 hours (September 30–October 30, add 8 hours)
 
Office Closures
 
The Study Center offices in Lyon is usually closed from the third week of July until the student arrival day.
 
Academic Information
Program Overview

Fall and Year Immersion

UCEAP’s fall and year immersion programs in Lyon begin with a few days of required orientation followed by an intensive language program (ILP), organized by CIEF (Centre International d’Etudes Françaises). You will receive a grade for the ILP. During the ILP, Study Center staff provides academic advice and helps you develop your academic program for the semester or year.
 
During the year, most students develop an academic program consisting primarily of courses in the humanities and social sciences. The Institut d’Etudes Politiques (IEP) features a multidisciplinary curriculum aimed at providing an intellectual basis for the interpretation of contemporary society. It offers courses in economics, history, geography, political theory, and sociology. Lyon 2 offers courses in economics, French literature, geography, history, linguistics, visual arts, art history, psychology, political science, anthropology, and sociology.
 
Some departments are located on the Bron campus. You may arrange to attend classes at both locations, if scheduling permits, and if available courses are relevant to your academic program. You may choose to take a UCEAP-sponsored writing course during the second semester.  

Fall Intensive Language & Culture

UCEAP offers the opportunity to study French intensively at the intermediate (second-year) level. The Lyon language and culture program is designed for students with a solid three quarters (two semesters) of university-level French. The program offers a specially designed curriculum intended to improve both oral and written language skills while providing a fundamental background in French culture, society, and literature. All courses are conducted in French.

 

You will not have access to regular University of Lyon courses in this program. The coursework in this program is designed for UC students by the Center for Instruction in French Studies (CIEF), which specializes in teaching French language and culture to international students. Homestays are required and an integral part of the program. To successfully complete this program, you must take a total of five courses and earn approximately 24 UC quarter units (16 semester units).

Academic Culture
 
 
 

Libraries & Textbooks

In Lyon there are several municipal libraries to use throughout the city for a low cost, and all students can use the university libraries free of charge. Students typically buy books at bookstores or online stores such as Amazon. Some courses, especially those at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques (IEP), use course readers instead of textbooks. Some professors at Lyon 2 also post their class notes online.
 
Take familiar reference books and key works that are important for your major; these materials may not always be readily available in English.
 
You can find all books from the reading lists at the university libraries. However, libraries usually have limited hours and do not offer the option of late evening studies. It may be difficult to check out or reserve books. As a result, you may need to purchase books from the reading lists (though it may be inexpensive, as usually there is less required reading than at UC). The situation varies by university.
 
 
Course Information

Immersion Course Information

Undergraduate students are encouraged to take courses offered in SEM 1-2-3-4, but can also take courses at the licence level (third year) in their major (SEM 5-6). Beyond the licence, courses become specialized and you must have a strong background in the field of study; these courses are more suitable for graduate students.
 
Most courses involve one lecture a week. For the most part, you will take the same exams, write the same papers, and be graded in the same way as French students.
 
Lyon 2 and IEP offer a methodology course to help you succeed within the requirements of the French academic system. It is strongly recommended that you take this course. In addition you are required to take a Contemporary French Society course. Both of these courses are offered in the first semester. 
 
In addition to the two courses mentioned above, you are required to enroll in a minimum of 18 UC quarter units (12 semester units) each semester which is equivalent to 4 courses. The typical course load is five to seven courses per semester.
 
While abroad, remain in contact with your UC departmental advisors as you plan your study program for the year.
 
Important note to fall program participants: You must confirm with your instructors that you can take early exams at the end of December in order to return to your UC campus in time for the start of the winter quarter/spring semester.  
 

Registering for Courses

You will register with the UCEAP Study Center during the intensive language program (ILP), and the Study Center staff will complete your office registration to obtain your student ID card. You will also receive course information and assistance with university course registration during a meeting in early September.
 
Registering for courses in French universities may be a challenge. University course catalogues are rarely available, and course descriptions and scheduling are often drawn up and posted in departmental offices the week before classes begin. Students and Study Center staff occasionally receive conflicting or ambiguous information during the registration period. For this reason, it is important to consult with the Study Center throughout the registration process. 

 

Language and Culture Course Information

The language portion of the program in Lyon is divided into three sessions. The first two sessions, each three weeks in length, consist of a two-part structure and culture course, which introduces and further develops your knowledge of linguistic structures and their contextual use, and provides pertinent cultural and literary information. Attached to this course are an oral and a writing workshop. During the remaining eight weeks of the program, you will study advanced composition and grammar, organization of ideas, and oral presentation. During this time, you engage in a field project, the results of which are presented in the form of both an oral and a written report at the end of the program. You earn 18 lower-division UC quarter units (12 semester units) for the language coursework.
 
In addition to the coursework described above, you also enroll in the Contemporary French Society class and a choice of one or two of the following course options (literature and culture and/or art history), each worth 4 upper-division UC quarter units (2.7 semester units):
  • Genres in Literary Analysis: This course is a survey of 19th- and 20th-century French literature and culture. It presents selections of major French literary works in their social, political, and cultural contexts, with emphasis on several texts of contemporary Francophone writers.
     
  • History of Art and Architecture in Lyon: This course offers an in-depth study of the history of art and architecture in Lyon and includes many field trips. The emphasis is placed on Roman through Renaissance art and architecture, as well as some modern art. Field trips include visits to important museums and other historical sites.
     
  • Contemporary French Society: This course focuses on France’s social structures and institutions, as well as some major issues currently facing France on the national and international stage. Topics include the French educational system, French political parties and elections, France within the European Union (the Maastricht Treaty), corruption, immigration policies and policies toward asylum seekers, civil rights, unions, and French-U.S. relations. A few visits may be organized during the length of the course.
Classes in the Lyon fall language and culture program are held five days a week, Monday through Friday. Additionally, the last final exam will be held on the last day of instruction; you are not permitted to leave Lyon before that date.
 

Registering for Courses

You will complete your course registration within a few weeks after your arrival in Lyon. The Study Center staff will provide you with instructions on registering for courses at your orientation.
 
Grades
Assessment in Lyon is typically in the form of a final written exam, but it can vary depending on the course. Some professors may choose to give an oral exam to foreign students or to fall immersion students who need to take an exam in advance. Students are allotted time to prepare their answers to the question(s) posed by the professor and then they sit with the professor for the exam. You do not need to sign up for your final exams, but you usually have to sign a “presence sheet” on the day of your final. It is important for you to check the day and time of your final exam as they seldom take place on the day and time of the class itself. For example, you may have a final that takes place on a Saturday.
 
Grades for the Fall Immersion term are typically available in late March and grades for the Spring Immersion term are typically available in late August/early September.
 
Grades for the Fall Language and Culture program are typically available in early February.
For information about grades, see the Academic Information chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad.
Internships
At the University of Lyon you can go to the “Bureau des Stages” for information on internships. If you are interested in doing an internship in Lyon you will need to do the research into organizations or professors that are willing to take on interns.
Extending UCEAP Participation

Extension Opportunities 

Extending your UCEAP participation may be possible. The following extension options are available:
  • Lyon language & culture fall semester to immersion spring semester
  • Lyon immersion fall semester to immersion academic year
  • Lyon language & culture fall semester to Bordeaux language & culture spring semester
 
 
Cultural Awareness
Educate Yourself
 
Etiquette
 
Concealment Act
 
Official Start Date & Mandatory Orientation
 
Travel Planning
Travel to Your Host Country
 
 
 
Travel Documents
 
 
 
Packing Tips
 
 
 
 
Return Travel
 
Financial Information
Understanding Your Finances
 
Your MyEAP Account & Budget
 
 
Handling Money Abroad
 
If you are participating in the Lyon Immersion program, take enough money (U.S. $2,000 to $2,500) to cover initial living expenses (rent, meals, and incidentals) that will be incurred shortly after arrival. If you are a Lyon Language & Culture student, you will need less money initially (U.S. $1,000–$1,500).
 
If you are required to obtain a titre de séjour (see the Travel Documents section of this guide for details), you will also need €58 to cover the cost of the fiscal stamp required by France. This is payable when you go to complete the titre de séjour process later in the semester. Alternatively, you can pay for the fiscal stamp online prior to attending your medical visit at www.timbresofii.fr
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Banking

Lyon
If you are in the Lyon Immersion program, take enough money (about U.S. $2,000 to $2,500) in travelers checks to cover initial expenses (rent, meals, and incidentals); if you open a bank account in France, you may not be able to access the money in it right away. If you are a Lyon Language & Culture student, you will need less money initially (U.S. $1,000–$1,500).
 
The Lyon Study Center has an agreement with BNP Paribas (partner of Bank of America). There is no obligation to open an account there, but it is convenient, as you will be given the opportunity to open an account upon arrival. Fees and services will vary by bank, so shop around before you choose a bank. To open a bank account, you will need your passport, a certificat d’ hébergement (housing certificate), and identification from your landlord.
 
Opening a bank account in France is free and does not require an initial deposit. You will receive a debit card within about 10 days of opening an account, and if you wish, you may request to receive a checkbook as well.
 
 
If you expect reimbursement:
  • Leave your French bank account open until all checks are deposited. Once all reimbursements are completed, write to the bank and have them close the account. You can request that the French bank transfer the balance to
    a U.S. account. There will probably be a transfer fee of $25.
     
  • Have the person who owes the money transfer it through his or her bank directly to a U.S. bank account. International bank-to-bank transfers are allowed by French currency regulations.
 
Communications Abroad
Internet Access

When you register with the University of Lyon you will receive a university e-mail address and you will be able to access WiFi on campus. 
 
During the ILP, you will have access to computers and WiFi at the CIEF (Foreign Students Department). When the regular term starts, you will also have access to computer rooms at Lyon 2.
 
Expect computer access to be more limited than at your UC campus. You may be allowed to write papers by hand if necessary.
Phones
 
Mail & Shipments
 

Mail

Have mail sent to the Lyon Study Center during the orientation and ILP and to your private address once you are settled in your homestay or apartment. 
 
See Your UCEAP Network in this guide for the Study Center address.
 
 
Housing & Meals
Housing

Lyon Year (Immersion)

During the ILP, you will live in a residence hall for two and a half weeks; the cost is included in your UCEAP fees. Accommodations consist of double rooms with a private bathroom; there is no refrigerator or cooking facilities. Be prepared to pay for all meals during the ILP (except breakfast). The cost of eating out can be high, but you can find reasonably priced meals at nearby university dining facilities.
 
Academic year housing options include rooms in private homes/residences, shared apartments, or homestays in Lyon or its outskirts. (Priority for homestays is given to students in the fall Language & Culture and fall Immersion programs.) The suburbs of Lyon are well connected by an efficient transportation network.
 
You are responsible for finding your own housing (unless you are placed in a homestay). Housing can be difficult to locate; UCEAP strongly advises you to start your housing search before departure. The Study Center puts ads in the local newspaper and will share with you the offers received. You are also responsible for doing additional research on your own (via the Internet and various offices centralizing offers). A former UCEAP student is also hired for three weeks at the beginning of your stay to assist you with your housing search. The student assistant is familiar with the city and can help you with the housing hunt.
 
You can also consult the following websites:
 
 
UCEAP students have found the first month in Lyon to be somewhat stressful. Be prepared for the usual frustration associated with finding ideal housing. UCEAP students report that this is a tough time but it is also a good learning experience and well worth the effort. If you have difficulty locating housing, contact the Study Center immediately. The Study Center is often indispensable in assisting with the housing search. While the Study Center will not actually find your housing, staff can be of great help if you are having trouble locating housing that suits your needs.
 

Lyon Fall (Immersion)

Housing options during the semester include private apartments (usually shared with other students), rooms in private homes/residences in the city, and homestays. Unless you are placed in a homestay, you are responsible for finding your own accommodation for the semester. Housing can be difficult to locate; UCEAP strongly advises you to start your housing search before departure.
 

Apartments

The Study Center puts ads on housing websites and will share with you the offers received. You are also responsible for doing additional research on your own (via the Internet and various offices centralizing offers). A former UCEAP student is also hired for three weeks at the beginning of your stay to assist with the housing search. The student assistant is familiar with the city and can help you with the housing hunt. Refer also to the useful websites listed in the previous section for Lyon year students.
 
During the ILP, you will stay at the residence hall with the year students for the first two and a half weeks.
 

Homestays

You will receive an e-mail from the Lyon Study Center with information on how to select your housing option. If you are interested in a homestay, you will be asked to submit a homestay questionnaire, self-introduction letter in French, and your photo to the Lyon Study Center. The homestay questionnaire and letter in French can be sent by e-mail as attached documents. Your letter in French will serve as the first contact with your host family, and then they will have your e-mail address for the response. 
 
In your homestay, you will have access to full kitchen facilities. Bedding (sheets, blankets, pillows) and towels are provided, but you are advised to bring one towel for traveling. Most homestay families live in apartments, and you will have a private room. The homestay housing cost includes breakfast and dinner five days a week. You will be staying at the CISL for the first three nights.
 
You may not move in with your host family in Lyon prior to the official start date. You will be staying in the residence hall for the first three nights of the program. You are expected to move out on the last day of the program.
 
There is a €200 Homestay Service Fee for Lyon students who are placed in homestays (in addition to the cost of the housing); if you are placed in a homestay, this fee will be charged to your MyEAP Financial Account. Your UCEAP account will be adjusted and the cost of rent will be paid directly to UCEAP.
 

Lyon Fall (Language & Culture)

You will reside in a homestay during the program. After spending your first night in Lyon at a residence, you will move to your private room with a family in Lyon or its surrounding districts. You may not move in with your host family in Lyon prior to the official start date. You are expected to move out on the last day of the program.
 
In order to aid the Study Center in arranging appropriate housing, complete the UCEAP homestay questionnaire and a self-introduction letter in French during the spring prior to departure. The questionnaire and the instructions for writing the letter will be e-mailed to you by the Study Center.
 
Your letter in French will serve as the first contact with your host family, and then they will have your e-mail address for the response. The Study Center will only consider reassigning you in severely mismatched situations.
 
There is a wide range of accommodations, in terms of location, facility, family interest, or socio-economic and educational backgrounds. Some of the homestays may be as far as 30 to 40 minutes by bus from the university, but Lyon has excellent transportation.
 
Accommodations include breakfast and dinner five days a week. You provide your own lunch, and you will have access to the kitchen during the weekends. As a guest in a homestay, you are expected to conform to French family norms. Flexibility and adaptability are important qualities for a successful homestay experience. Do not expect to live as you do at home. Review the general Homestays section at the end of this chapter for further guidelines.
 
The cost of the homestay is included in your UCEAP program fees. There is a €200 Homestay Service Fee for Lyon students who are placed in homestays (in addition to the cost of the housing); this fee will be charged to your MyEAP Financial Account. Refer to the Student Budget Worksheet (available in the Money Matters section of your Participants program page) for exact fees.
 

Rent Payment (All Programs)

Unless otherwise instructed, you are required to make your own housing payments (even if you are on financial aid). Review your UCEAP Student Budget to determine if housing costs are included in your program fees or paid for out of pocket.
 
All renters in France are required to have liability insurance for protection against accidents, fire, or water damage. The renter’s insurance premium is not included in the UCEAP fees; you will have to pay this out of pocket.
 

Homestays

If you are in the fall language and culture program, the cost of the homestay is included in your UCEAP program fees. If you are in the fall immersion program and choose to stay in a homestay, the fees will be added to your UCEAP account. Refer to the UCEAP Student Budget (available in the Money Matters section of your Participants program page) for exact fees.
 
 
 
 

Renter’s Insurance

Under French law, you are required to have renter’s insurance, which can cost from €80 to €140 for the year. This insurance covers fire, water damage, accidents, and theft (only from your home). The renter’s insurance premium is not included in the UCEAP fees for students in Lyon; you will have to pay this out of pocket once in France.
 
 
 
Meals
 

Lyon Immersion

There are no cooking facilities in the ILP dormitories, but reasonably priced meals are available at university dining facilities (approximately €3 at the restaurant universitaire). You can also buy food at a reasonable price in shops close to the residence.
 

Lyon Language & Culture

In your homestay, breakfast and dinner are provided five days a week, and the cost is included in your fees. You will have access to the kitchen to prepare your own meals on weekends. You must prepare your own lunch or eat at one of the local cafeterias.  
 
Daily Life Abroad
Local Transportation
Most students live 30 to 60 minutes away from the university (local commute times and costs vary by location and host institution). Monthly transportation passes available in Lyon cover the bus, tramway, and metro services. The costs of these passes are approximately €25–28.
 
Bikes
Bike riding is another transportation option. You can easily rent bikes in Lyon at inexpensive rates; all details can be found on the Vélo’v website. Note that you are required to have a French bank account in order to rent bikes from these services.
 
 
Extracurricular Activities
 
Students with Disabilities
Travel Sign-out Form
 
The UCEAP student budget does not include funds for recreational travel abroad.
 
Working in France
Students in the Lyon immersion programs may legally work in France; Lyon Language & Culture students may not. French law dictates that international students have the right to work while studying in France as long as they are enrolled in an institution that participates in the national student health care plan. Students who are not EU citizens must also hold a valid titre de séjour (see the Travel Documents section of this guide for details). It may take four months or more to receive your titre de séjour after your arrival in France, so working may be more feasible for students who will be in France for the year.
 
The law allows students to work 964 hours in a given year, which corresponds to 50% of full-time employment for the year (approximately 20 hours per week). Your work schedule should not interfere with your class schedule and coursework.
 
If you decide to work abroad, do not rely on that source of income to subsidize the UCEAP program; you must have other means of support. Student jobs are difficult to find, especially for foreigners, and even more so if you are not fluent in French. A few students in the past have found jobs teaching English and babysitting.
 
Contact the French consulate for more information about working abroad and applicable visa requirements.
 
Volunteer Opportunities
 
Insurance
UCEAP Insurance
 
French National Health Insurance
If you are enrolled an immersion program in Lyon, you are required to obtain French national health insurance (sécurité sociale). The Lyon Study Center pays the sécurité sociale for Lyon students and the cost is included in your UCEAP fees. Lyon Language & Culture students are exempt. 
 
Sécurité sociale covers 30-70 percent of basic medical costs as long as you are treated by a designated category of doctor.
Staying Healthy
Local Medical Facilities
 
If you have questions, concerns, or feel that you need to be tested for a sexually transmitted disease, you can receive information and testing at the following clinics:
 
Lyon:
Hôpital Edouard Herriot
5 place d’Arsonval
69003 Lyon
(metro ligne D, station Grange Blanche)
(This hospital is open 24 hours a day)
 
Physical Health
Prescription Medications
 
Mental Health

​There may be times when you wonder why you decided to study in France, especially when you miss your family and friends, or you are struggling with financial problems, feeling alone, or unable to communicate easily with others. There could be any number of things that might make you feel unhappy or worried and perhaps being in France makes it much harder to cope with such stresses. Most students expect to quickly adapt to the new culture— and they need to adjust rapidly if they are to effectively meet the academic demands placed upon them. Culture shock is a normal developmental phase of adjustment to a new cultural environment. It is not a psychological disorder. 
 
Most students who experience culture shock function reasonably well under the stress and are able to keep up with the responsibilities of school and everyday life. Culture shock is usually transitory— lasting a couple of weeks—and do not imply mental illness or an inability to cope. Talk openly with others about how you are feeling, and ask for help when you need it.

 
If you need to talk to a counselor, the UCEAP Study Center can provide you with referral information and help you make an appointment with English-speaking clinical psychologists and psychiatrists.
 
Your UCEAP Insurance Plan covers counseling sessions, there is no co-pay or deductible, and you can make an appointment with any doctor. You can also contact the UCEAP assistance provider, Europ Assistance, in the United States to ask for medical referrals and/or to arrange for direct payment to a provider, if possible. Their email is ops@europassistance-usa.com).

 

Health Risks
Staying Safe
Minimize Risk
Crime & Prevention
France is a relatively safe country, with most crimes being non-violent. The majority of crimes directed against foreign visitors, including Americans, involve pick-pocketing and theft. Most problems can be avoided by being aware of one’s surroundings and avoiding high-risk areas.
 
Petty theft is frequent in crowded tourist areas and bus/train stations, on commuter trains (Metro), and in main business and shopping districts. Pickpockets can be any gender, race, or age and are commonly children under the age of 16, as they cannot be prosecuted. Often, one thief distracts a victim while an accomplice pickpockets the victim; this tactic is commonly employed by adult-child teams, in which the children are often dressed as gypsies. Always secure your belongings before reacting to a distraction. A common scam involves persons working in conjunction to distract a foreigner by asking directions or the time. While the person is distracted, one of the scam artists steals from the victim.
 
Bordeaux is generally a safe city. However, follow the safety precautions above, and avoid the area around the main train station, Gare Saint-Jean de Bordeaux, if walking alone late at night.
 
Most of Lyon is safe, but petty crime is a problem, especially in metropolitan areas. Follow the safety precautions above, and avoid Parc de la Tete d’Or, Perrache, Terreaux, and some parts of La Croix Rousse after dark.
  
If a pickpocket steals your wallet or purse, do not let it affect your sense of personal safety. It can happen to anyone and possessions are much less important than your overall safety and good health.
 
Personal Safety Tips:
  • Guard against pickpockets and purse snatchers.
  • Avoid walking in deserted areas at night, especially alone; walk only in well-lit areas.
  • Avoid wearing flashy jewelry and watches.
  • Keep wallets in front pockets, wear purses close to your body or use a money belt. Carry your purse or bag with the strap diagonally across your chest.
  • Be inconspicuous. Try to dress to blend in with locals. College sweatshirts, sweatpants, baseball caps, white sneakers, and shorts are all associated with Americans and may make you stand out.
  • Act like you know where you are going, even if you do not. Plan ahead when you are in an unfamiliar part of a city so you will not have to pull out a map and demonstrate that you are lost.
  • Always walk with a friend.
  • Do not store a camera or other valuables in backpacks where they can be removed without notice.
  • Leave items that you do not need on any given day at home.
     
  • Do not carry your passport. Copy the first page of your passport to use as a form of ID and leave your actual passport safe in your room. If you lose your passport, or if it is stolen, immediately notify the nearest embassy or consulate, local authorities, and UCEAP Study Center staff. Before departure, scan the first page of your passport and e-mail the file to yourself. If your passport is stolen while you are traveling, you can access it online and print out a copy, which will help in obtaining a replacement from the embassy.
     
  • Do not use an ATM in isolated, unlit areas or when there are people loitering in the vicinity. Avoid using the ATMS in train stations, especially at night. Beware of people standing close enough to the ATM to read your personal identification number (PIN) as you enter it into the machine. Thieves often conduct successful scams by simply observing the PIN as it is entered. If your card gets stuck in the ATM, be wary of people who offer to help, even those who seem to be helpful and ask for your PIN so they can “fix” the machine. Legitimate bank employees never have a reason to ask for the PIN.
     
  • Remain aware if using your laptop or smart phone in a public space. Many laptops, cell phones, smart phones, and Blackberries are stolen by agile thieves waiting for you to turn away for a moment. If using a laptop in a restaurant or café, do not sit near the doors where a thief could run in, grab the computer, and run out easily. Sit in a back area and remain aware of the people around you. Do not place your cell phone or Blackberry on the café table; always keep it in your purse or pocket. Do not text or phone while walking down the street or waiting for the metro; do so in a discreet place where no one can see the phone you are using.
     
  • Use common sense and use the same personal safety precautions that you would use in a large city in California.
     
  • Lock your door and secure your bike to prevent theft.
     
  • Secure your wallet and purse on buses and in crowds. Carry your wallet in a front or breast pocket, never in your back pocket.
For additional information, see the U.S. Department of State Students Abroad website.
 
Civil Unrest
Demonstrations & Strikes
Strikes and protests are frequent in France, mostly in metropolitan areas, and are usually staged by public officials, unionized workers, farmers, and anti-globalization and eco-activists. While violent civil unrest is not common in France, student, labor union, and immigrant demonstrations have escalated into confrontations in the past.
 
Large demonstrations in France usually have a strong police presence, but there have been occasions when protesters burned cars and numerous arrests were reported. In addition, the congestion caused by large demonstrations could cause major inconveniences for a visitor on a tight schedule.
 
Demonstrators are required to obtain a permit, and some of the local media will list scheduled demonstrations.
 
Avoid all protests and demonstrations, including student and labor rallies.
 
Traffic & Transportation Safety
Terrorism
International terrorism is a growing concern in France, although the threat of terrorist activity remains low. French officials have arrested a number of suspected Islamic extremists as part of ongoing cross-border operations involving police from Italy and Spain.
 
The government of France maintains a national antiterrorism plan, “Vigipirate Renforce.” Under this plan, in times of heightened security concerns, the government mobilizes police and armed forces at airports, train and metro stations, and other high-profile locations, such as schools, embassies, and government installations. Arrests have been made in France relatively recently in connection with various terrorist plots. Remain alert and vigilant of your surroundings, especially on subways and trains, and report any suspect packages, unattended baggage, or suspicious activities to local police or the nearest authority.
 
The Basque Separatist Party (ETA) and the National Front for the Liberation of Corsica (FLNC) operate in the south of France and Northern Spain, and occasionally bomb local government institutions, banks, travel agencies, etc. There have been numerous politically motivated bombings on the island of Corsica. While no deaths were caused by any of these acts of terrorism, you should remain vigilant if you travel to Corsica or Northern Spain.
 
Substance Abuse & Smoking
 
UCEAP Contingency Planning
 
Fire Safety
 
 
 
In An Emergency
 
 
 
 
The University of California, in accordance with applicable Federal and State law and University policy, does not discriminate on the basis of race, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, pregnancy,* disability, age, medical condition (cancer-related), ancestry, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or status as a Vietnam-era veteran or special disabled veteran. The University also prohibits sexual harassment. This nondiscrimination policy covers admission, access, and treatment in University programs and activities. Inquiries regarding the University’s student-related nondiscrimination policies may be directed to the campus Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action office.

* Pregnancy includes pregnancy, childbirth, and medical conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth.