Studying in France also means living in France
Discovering the realities of French life on a daily basis
The climate in mainland France is temperate, with rainfall throughout the year and relatively mild temperatures. Angers and Rennes have fairly mild, rainy winters (around 6/8°C) and fairly hot summers (around 20/22°C).
The Train Grande Vitesse (TGV) rail network is well developed in France and allows you to reach most major cities in less than half a day. For example: Paris-Rennes in 1h30, Paris-Bordeaux in 2h and Paris-Montpellier in 3h30.
At national level, it is also possible to travel by Intercités train, which does not run at high speed; the cost of the journey is therefore more economical.
In the regions, train lines called "TER" for "Transport express régional" serve the cities. Tickets are more affordable. They cost between €5 and €20 depending on the destination. These trains allow you to visit the region at a low price.
Carpooling is a practical and economical way to get around France.
You can consult the specialised websites Blablacar and Mobicoop.
In France, people drive on the right-hand side of the road. The use of seat belts is compulsory in the front and rear of the vehicle
If there is no traffic sign to the contrary, you must give way to the right when you come to an intersection.
You can drive in France with a driving licence issued by a European Economic Area (EEA) state as long as it is valid.
If you have a driving licence issued by a state outside the European Economic Area (EEA), you can drive with your licence for a short stay (less than 185 days) or for 1 year from the date of acquisition of your normal residence.
More information on the official website of the French administration
Every foreign student has the right to work while studying in France. If the student is not a national of the European Union, he or she must have a "student" residence permit.
Electrical sockets are of type C and E (voltage 230 V - frequency 50 Hz). Remember to bring a universal adapter!
In France, the day is generally punctuated by three meals: breakfast in the morning before leaving for class or work; lunch and dinner.
Lunch is usually between 12pm and 2pm, and dinner between 7pm and 9pm.
Shop opening times
Shops are generally open from 10am to 7pm except on Sundays.
The 1st semester (autumn semester) starts at the beginning of September and ends at the beginning of February.
The 2nd semester (spring semester) starts at the beginning of February and ends at the end of June.
For more precise dates, please check the calendar specific to each program.
Holidays and public holidays
In France, 11 days are declared as public holidays to celebrate civil and religious holidays and to commemorate the two World Wars:
- January 1st: Celebration of the new year.
- Easter Monday: this is the Monday following Easter Sunday. The exact date changes each year.
- May 1st: labor day.
- May 8th: commemoration of the 1945 victory.
- Ascension Day: this Christian holiday usually falls on a Thursday in the month of May. The exact date changes each year.
- Whit Monday: this is the Monday following Pentecost Sunday, generally in May or June. The exact date changes each year.
- 14th of July: Bastille Day.
- August 15th: Roman catholic feast of the Assumption.
- November 1st: All Saints' Day.
- November 11th: Commemoration of the 1918 Armistice.
- December 25th: Christmas Day.
In addition to public holidays, students at l’Institut Agro Rennes-Angers usually have 5 weeks of vacation spread over the academic year, besides the summer break. Check the academic calendar for vacation dates.