Photo by John Schnobrich on Unsplash

Holders of long-stay visas marked « étudiant » (student) must apply for a residence card from the prefecture of their place of residence within two months of their arrival in France (or when becoming 18 year old for visa “mineur scolarisé”), as well as :

  • Algerian nationals holding a long-stay visa with the mention “student” (étudiant) ;
  • holders of a long-stay visa with the mention “student-mobility” (étudiant-programme de mobilité) ;
  • holders of a short-stay student visa marked “competitive examination student” (étudiant concours) having passed the examination for which the visa was issued ;
  • holders of a “student visa for minors” (mineur scolarisé) turning 18 years old.

Algerian nationals with a long stay visa « student » and the holders of the  « étudiant – mobilité » visa must submit their application file online at the following page: Please read carefully the FAQ for more details about the process and its steps (in French)

For holders of a short-stay visa with the mention « competition student  » (étudiant concours) or a « studying minor » (mineur scolarisé) visa, files are to be submitted with the police headquarters (préfecture) of their place of residence. The appropriate service can be reached using the contact form or the procedure indicated on the website of their place of residence’s police headquarters. For Paris, please use the contact form here :

List of the documentsto be provided for a first request for a student residence permit

For the online deposit, you will provide e-photo, and for for deposit of a paper application at the préfecture you will  give 3 recent passport photographs  (35 mm x 45 mm format) . Watch out : e-photos are valid for 6 months only.

Documents to be submitted

  • long-stay visa marked « étudiant » or « mineur scolarisé » , or short-stay visa marked « étudiant concours » along with the embassy certificate indicating the choice of schools and the certificate indicating the successful completion of the examination for which the visa was issued ;
  • passport (pages related to marital status, validity dates and entry stamps) ;
  • extract of birth certificate indicating filiation or full copy of birth certificate ;
  • proof of address less than 6 months old :
    • if tenant : electricity bill (or gas, water, landline telephone, or Internet service bill) or rental lease agreement less than 3 months old or rent receipt or housing tax statement ;
    • if staying at a hotel: hotelier’s certificate and last month’s bill ;
    • if staying with an individual : dated and signed statement from the host, copy of his/her identity card or residence card, deed of ownership (or the host’s statement of residence tax or copy of the rental lease agreement or the host’s electricity, gas, water, landline telephone or internet service bill) ;
  • e-photo (for online deposit) or 3 recent passport photographs for deposit of a paper application at the préfecture (35 mm x 45 mm format) ;
  • registration certificate issued by the French educational institution. A pre-registration certificate is sufficient at the time of the initial submission of the application. A certificate of final registration must be provided by the time at which the permit is provided ;
  • if the person is a trainee : work placement agreement (“convention de stage”) ;
  • Proof of sufficient means : the applicant’s financial resources must be at least equal to 615€ per month (bank statements of regular transfers or sufficient credit balance, sworn statement of payment of sums needed to complete the required amount if resources are provided by a third party, pay slips, scholarship certificate specifying the amount and duration of the scholarship).


Students first automatically receive a confirmation of online documents’ submission, the “confirmation de dépôt” (or a receipt “récépissé” in the case of a deposit of paper file in prefecture).

As soon as the prefecture’s department processes the dematerialized application, it issues a certificate of extension of instruction, the attestation de prolongation d’instruction, that functions as a récépissé, and then a certificate of positive decision, the attestation de décision favorable, pending the issuance of the residence permit. Once the decision is made, a residence permit is made. A text message informs that the residence card is ready. For the retrieving of the residence card, it is usually necessary to make an appointment on the website of the prefecture or sous-prefecture. At the latest on the day of the convocation, the student must pay a fee of €75 in the form of a tax stamp.

Students wishing to stay in France beyond the expiry date of their residence permit must apply for a renewal between 4 and 2 months before the expiry date of the residence card.

Purchase of tax stamp

On line on (remember  to save and print your receipt).

There is no need to buy a tax stamp (timbre fiscal) when you submit your residence permit request with an appointment at the préfecture (the stamp may expire before use) because it will only be requested when you obtain your residence card. Thus, you can purchase it just before retrieving your residence permit at the police headquarters (prefecture).

Information about the e-photos

Only professional photographers and approved photo booths such as Photomatons can provide photographs and a digital signature that are compatible with the visa request teleservice. They can be identified by a blue sticker that indicates “Agréé services en ligne ANTS “ (“Online approval services from the French National Agency for Secure Documents”).

Once you have taken your photo, you will be asked to sign using a stylus on a tablet or touch screen. It is important to use your real signature and not just a period or symbol in order for your residence permit to be produced.

  • Your photos will be printed in the same way as they are for a normal photo. .
  • You will also receive an individualised 22-number code. When you are filling out your online residence permit request form on the ANEF website, you need just indicate this number in order to link it to the photo and the digital signature.

It is advisable to wait 24-48 hours before using the code or to renew your attempt in case of any problem with this code. If it is not recognized after 2 days, you must contact the technical service of the photobooth (contact details indicated on your documents).