Living and working conditions

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Living conditions

Cost of living


The cost of living will very much depend on the region in which you live. In France, the difference is particularly marked between the Paris region and the other regions (the provinces). Moreover, even in the same town, prices can sometimes vary greatly from one district to another.



As in many European countries, accommodation forms the main expense for most French households. In the Paris region, accommodation-related expenditure is on average 36% higher than in the other regions. Furthermore, the price of property in the city centre is generally far higher than on the outskirts.


For an idea of the cost of rent in the Paris region and in certain provincial cities, see the following section on this website: ‘4. Living conditions 4.5 Accommodation’.



The structure of the retail network in France is comparable to that in other European countries: there are either small retailers in town centres offering a wide variety of products and brands at fairly high prices, or well-developed retail chains (most selling goods online) located on the outskirts, which offer lower prices for mass-market products.



  • bread (one French baguette):  EUR 1
  • metro/bus tickets:
  • Single t+ ticket: EUR 1.90
  • Book of 10 t+ tickets (standard rate): EUR 16.90
  • Book of 10 t+ tickets (reduced rate): EUR 8.45
  • Monthly Navigo pass ‘all zones’: EUR 75.20
  • Imagine R pass: EUR 350 ‘all zones’
  • 1 bus ticket: EUR 2
  • cinema ticket: EUR 10


A cinema ticket in Paris costs on average EUR 10. That price can drop to EUR 8 and rise to EUR 13 depending on the city. That price for a cinema ticket is higher than the average price in France by 10%.

  • standard rate postage stamp: EUR 0.97
  • a sandwich: EUR 5
  • a meal in a restaurant: EUR 15 to 20


Text last edited on: 10/2021