Discover why France is so more than the city of Paris by exploring small towns or villages, regions with a different look and feel. Immerse yourself in the culture famous around the world for its food, architecture, philosophy and painting. Be sure to explore the beautiful countryside from the Atlantic to the Alps and from the English Channel to the Mediterranean Sea.

Your French friends will probably spend time together in public parks or cafés, and go out to parties on the weekends. Soccer and basketball are common hobbies for French teenagers.

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Host Family & Community

You’ll most likely be hosted in a rural area anywhere in France. Your family will probably greet you with a “bise,” a friendly kiss on the cheek, expressing satisfaction and gratitude is appreciated. Expect to be treated like a regular family member, helping with chores and becoming part of the daily routine.


You’ll probably be enrolled in a public collège (if you are younger than 15) or lycée (if you are between 15 and 18 years old). Some AFS students attend private school. School days usually run from 8 am to 5 or 6 pm, with Wednesdays usually being half days.You may attend classes on Saturday mornings. Generally, students get two weeks of holidays for every six weeks of school. Schools place a heavy emphasis on academics so very few extracurricular activities are offered during the week. You can join sports and drama clubs in your free time.

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French is the official language in France. Some French knowledge is required for short-term programs (3 months or shorter). If your program lasts for 6 months or a year, you should still brush up on your French in advance and you will have access to an online language learning license a few weeks before the program.


Food is very important to the French. When they are not eating, they enjoy talking about food, which is delicious and prepared with great care. French enjoy a wide variety of cheeses, as well as local specialties like foie gras (liver paté), escargots de Bourgogne(snails), crêpes and cassoulet. French pastries and cheeses are also famous around the world.

Let AFS guide your intercultural adventure

Year Exchange PROGRAM

Program Date: September 7, 2018 – July 7, 2019
Birth Date Range: December 1, 1999 – March 1, 2003

With its passion for food, philosophy, art, and architecture, France is an ideal place to discover a new culture and rewrite your high school experience. By going to a local high school, you’ll be totally immersed in French language and customs, and what you learn during the day will be reinforced at night when you go home to your host family and community.

Program dates may vary and are meant to help with general scheduling only.
All programs, prices, and travel dates are subject to change without notice.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and programs are filled first-come, first-serve.

Apply Now!