Kingpin's Guide to Living and Working in Paris
Life in the bustling capital
Paris is the third most visited city in the world with 70 million tourists visiting the city each year. And according to OECD France is number 1 in Europe and second in the world for life quality but what are the must-knows for a corporate move to the city?
Understandably, Paris is a very expensive place to live and expats should expect to downsize in the hunt for accommodation. Paris is divided into 20 arrondissements (districts), starting in the middle with number 1 (written as le premier or 1e). Finding an apartment centrally is very competitive but from the middle outwards the districts grow in size and the rent tends to decrease.
For a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre the rent varies from €800-€1,500/month compared to around €600/month outside of the city. May to July is the prime time for property search in Paris, September through October being the most difficult as a lot of properties have already been secured. Once you have decided which district you would like to live it is the best to contact an agency directly, as they tend to focus on a narrow area and have excellent local knowledge. Otherwise, websites such as Lodgis and seloger can aid in your property search.
Public transportation is the easiest way to travel in Paris. With a travel pass, you get unlimited access to all transportation networks across Paris and the Île-de-France region for one month from €65. A lot of Parisians will also walk from place to place. The city is very pedestrian friendly and it is an easy way to get to know the city while getting some exercise.
A City of Culture
Parisian attractions are some of the most alluring in the world with the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and the Arc de Triomphe all on your doorstep. If you like shopping, then a stroll down one of the most prestigious shopping streets, the Avenue des Champs-Elysées, is in order. Otherwise, the city offers a mass of museums, art galleries and cultural events.
France is famous for their food and you can experience their gastronomy at its finest in the capital. With an endless choice of bars and restaurants in the city, there is something for everyone.
The French language is also an important element of the country’s culture. Over 220 million people speak French worldwide and it is a popular language to learn. You can sign up to private tutors in the city for between €12 and €20 per hour. Alternatively, there are a number of language schools across Paris such as Alliance Francaise who offer a number of different French courses about living and working in France. The majority of residents in Paris are fully conversant in English as a language for international commerce.
There are a variety of different communities available for Paris residents, such as the strong expat community which presents opportunity to meet like-minded expatriates with shared backgrounds. Meetup.com also has a range of groups and clubs which may be of relevance to a newcomer in the city.
Education in France
The education system in France isn’t substantially different from that in other European countries. Paris has a number of international schools across the capital and the 16e and 17e are home to two of the most outstanding: the International School of Paris and the Kingsworth International School. General fees for international schools in the city are around €6,000 a year for pre-school and €15,000 for higher grades. Alternatively, there is a wide range of public schools available across Paris.
All Parisian schools offer extensive extra-curricular activity programs for kids of all grades. Paris is a very child-friendly city and there is plenty to do as a family. Inspirelle.com have created a useful activity list for kids in Paris, which will give you a few ideas of what you and your family can get up to on the weekends.
Corporate tax incentives
The financial industry in Paris has several key strengths: 3 of Europe’s 5 biggest investment banks are situated in the Paris Region, it provides more than 1 million jobs and the city has a track record as being a driver of innovation. Furthermore, it is estimated that Paris will overtake London’s financial industry in 5-10 years due to Brexit consequences. It is said that Paris may become the new main financial hub for Europe and to attract more financial companies they will build seven new skyscrapers by 2021 in order to “accommodate new talent”.
Since the Brexit vote, France has been keen on becoming the financial centre of Europe. President Macron has proposed cutting corporation tax to incentivise multi-nationals and even simplified the process of registering new financial companies in France.
Furthermore, Paris is “dangling tax carrots” to professionals fleeing London in the wake of Brexit. There has been an income tax break of 50% and expats will have the right to not include foreign properties and assets in the calculation of wealth tax for eight years.
In an increasingly connected world, Paris is on board the 'digital' bandwagon with connected cars, driverless cars, eHealth and smart homes already prevalent in the country. By introducing the best corporate tax incentives, the French government hopes to attract the brightest minds to live and work in the country.
If you are interested in a move to Paris or anywhere else in the world and would like to speak to Kingpin International about International Tax Opportunities, please contact a member of the team. Alternatively, please browse our current International Tax vacancies.