Seasonal work in France is a popular option for those who want to spend time in France, for adventure and cultural exchange and to earn some money at the same time.
If you are an EU citizen, you are automatically entitled to work in France.
If you are from outside the EU you may need to arrange a long stay/and or residence permit if you are working for longer than three months or for a French employer. (See the European Commission website for details
Seasonal work is likely to pay “minimum wage” known as SMIC (Le Salaire minimum interprofessionnel de croissance):
As at 2016 the minimum wage in France is €9.67 (gross per hour)
Many people also work unofficially which is called “le black” in France.
If you can, arrange work before arriving in France – there are many choices from au pair work, farm labour and grape picking and plenty of openings in the tourism industry.
Tourism industry jobs in France
This is the most popular and the best way of getting a summer job or seasonal work in France. Every year more than a quarter of a million seasonal workers are taken on across the country – including foreign workers who speak English.
You will have far more chance of success if you speak French as well.
Jobs in the tourist industry are varied – guide work in museums, tours, festivals as well as hotels and campsites. Contact travel agencies directly and reputable companies like Eurocamp, Disneyland Paris and other big holiday operators in France – they are often a good source of work for English speaking seasonal workers in France.
There is also bar work and restaurant work, particularly in areas where there are high numbers of English speaking tourists.
Many campsite companies employ seasonal workers in the summer to work on their campsites in France. A quick search on the internet for campsite jobs in France will reveal a high number of options.
You must be over the age of 18 to undertake a paid summer job in France and many employers like to take on mature workers as well as couples.
Although the work can be hard, you will get time off and this can be an excellent way to discover France and earn some money at the same time.
Seasonal agricultural Jobs in France
There are several options for seasonal agricultural jobs or farm work – grape picking, olive picking and general farm work are the most typical – though there is far less scope for jobs in these areas than there used to be. Local workers are much favoured in France.
Grape picking can be very hard work – you need to be fit to take this on but it can also be great fun.
You are usually paid by the hour (minimum wage) or by the job – the amount of grapes picked. Not all vineyards offer food and lodging but some do.
You’ll need to do some searching on the internet to find jobs, contacts holiday operators, campsites and look on their sites for job openings and check the following useful websites to find out more about seasonal and summer jobs in France:
Pole Emploi – the French employment agency