France vs Ireland: Which is the Better Study-Abroad Destination?

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France and Ireland are excellent study-abroad destinations, offering world-class education and employment opportunities. Renowned for their high-ranked universities, these nations are among the top choices for international students who wish to pursue higher education. A lot of students get confused when they have to choose between France and Ireland for pursuing education as they both are excellent study-abroad destinations. If you are also one of them, then keep reading this blog as we will clear all your doubts regarding France vs Ireland. We will compare both countries and finally conclude which one of them is a better study-abroad destination. 

Parameters FranceIreland 
Area551,695 KM²84,421 KM²
CurrencyEuro (€)Euro (€)
Total Higher Education ProvidersOver 3,500 Public and Private Institutes22
Total Indian Students Studying10,0004,000
Average Cost of Living€918.2 – €3,273.8€1,000 – €1,500 Per Month
Average Cost of Studying€600 – €800 / Month€12,000 Per Annum
Popular Job SectorsPharmacy, Psychology, Radiology, Architecture, Journalism, and HealthcareTechnology, Accounting and Finance, Construction, Creative Design, Web Development, Nursing, and Business Skills. 
Permitted Part-Time Working Hours20 Hours Per WeekUp To 40 Hours Per Week During Holidays and 20 hours Per Week During the School Year

Top Universities: France vs Ireland

It is really important that you choose the right university as it is going to be a stepping stone for your bright career. The right institute will equip you with the relevant skills required for a bright career. We have provided a list of the best universities in France and Ireland in the tables given below. At the end of this section, we will conclude which country houses the best universities. The country with the higher-ranked universities will be granted +2 points. 

Universities in France

The table below provides some of the best universities in France:

Top Universities in FranceQS World University Rankings 2024Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2024
Université PSL (Paris Sciences & Lettres)24 47
Ecole Polytechnique38
Sorbonne University5975
Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon184
Ecole des Ponts ParisTech192 401–500
Université de Paris236
Sciences Po Paris319501–600
Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne328801–1000
ENS Paris-Saclay7158

Universities in Ireland

The table below provides a list of the best universities in Ireland:

Top Universities in the Ireland QS World University Rankings 2024Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2023
Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin8117
University College Dublin171201–250
University of Galway289301–350
University College Cork292301–350
Dublin City University436401–500
University of Limerick426
Maynooth University801-850401–500

Which Country is Better?

As we can see from the tables given above, the universities in France have a higher rank than the universities in Ireland. Hence, France will receive a score of +2 points in this round of France vs Ireland. 

Also Read: UK vs France: Find out the Best Study Destination for Students

Admission Requirements

You need to understand the admission requirements in both France and Ireland before you finally decide which nation you want to pick for studying. In this section, we will understand the admission criteria in each nation. 

Admission Requirements For France

The eligibility criteria to gain admission to French universities are listed below: 

  • Applicants have to be at least 18 years old. 
  • Students are able to obtain a short-stay visa in case they attend a training program that lasts less than three months.
  • Students will be given a temporary long-stay visa if their training course ends after three months or six months, and they will not be required to finish any further paperwork when they come to France.
  • Students will be granted a long-stay visa, which is equal to a residency permit in case their training lasts for more than six months. 
  • The students also need to submit the documents mentioned below: 
  1. A visa application form for a France study visa
  2. An official Letter of Acceptance/Enrolment from the University in France
  3. Two passport-size photos
  4. A valid passport and copies of your previous visas if any
  5. If you have enrolled in a course taught in French, you will need a proficiency certificate for the French language
  6. Documents that state the arrangement for accommodation during your studies
  7. Evidence of monetary means for covering all expenses during the period of study
  8. Air flight reservation/ticket with the date of departure
  9. Evidence of payment of Visa fees
  10. Medical insurance that can cost around 30,000 Euros yearly
  11. If applicable, proof of civil status

Admission Requirements For Ireland

The admission criteria for gaining admission to Irish universities are as follows: 

  • The applicants must have a current passport. 
  • A minimum IELTS score of 6.0 is required, as is a TOEFL iBT score of 90, a PTE score of 36 (UG), a PTE score of 63 (PG), and a Cambridge ESOL score of C1 or C2.
  • Students need to have a medical insurance policy of a minimum amount of €25,000. 
  • The students need to provide proof of sufficient funds. 
  • You also have to submit some mandatory documents, including: 
  1. A letter from a college confirming your acceptance
  2. Receipt as verification of registration and payment of tuition fees
  3. Two passport pictures
  4. Additional university-specific requirements

Which Country is Better?

As apparent from the above, the admission process for the universities in France is easier than in Ireland. Hence, France will be awarded +2 points in this section of our France vs Ireland contest. 

Also Read: Part-Time Jobs in France

Tuition Fees

In this section, we are going to discover which country has the lowest cost of education. The country with the lowest tuition cost will be awarded +2 points. So, let us compare tuition fees in France and Ireland. 

Tuition Fees in France

As per the websites of the French universities, the average annual tuition fees in the country are as follows: 

Study Program Average Annual Tuition Fee
Undergraduate €600 – €30,000
Doctoral€380 – €30,000

Tuition Fees in Ireland

The average annual tuition fees in Ireland as per the website of the universities in the country are shown in the table provided below: 

Study Program Average Annual Tuition Fee
Undergraduate €9,000 to €26,000
Postgraduate€9,000 to €35,000
Doctoral€9,000 to €40,000

Which Country is Better?

As we can see from the above comparison, the cost of studying in France is lower than in Ireland. Hence, we will award +2 points to France in this round of France vs Ireland. 

Also Read: Bonjour! Learn the 10 Best Ways to Say Hello in French!

Living Expenses

One of the main concerns for overseas students is the cost of living in their study-abroad destination. In this section, we will make a comparison between the cost of living in France and Ireland, and conclude which one has lower living expenses. 

Cost of Living in France 

As per Numbeo, the living expenses in France are as follows:

Monthly Rent €577.17 – €1,406.99
Average Apartment Price (Price per Square Metre)€4,183.50 – €5,828.18 
Average Cost of an Inexpensive Restaurant Meal €15
Average Transportation Cost (Monthly)€61
Average Cost of Utility (Monthly)€229.03

Cost of Living in Ireland

According to Numbeo’s website, the living expenses in Ireland are as follows:

Monthly Rent €1,254.49 – €2,480.65 
Average Apartment Price (Price per Square Metre)€3,532.03 – €4,882.53 
Average Cost of an Inexpensive Restaurant Meal €15
Average Transportation Cost (Monthly)€100
Average Cost of Utility (Monthly)€276.21

Which Country is Better?

As we can see from the above comparison, the overall cost of living in France is lower than in Ireland. Hence, we will award +2 points to France in this round of France vs Ireland.

Also Read: Study in France for Indian Students 2023

Work Permit and PR

Almost every overseas student aims to find employment and eventually receive permanent residency in the country where they are studying. We are going to compare the easiness of obtaining a work visa and permanent residency in France and Ireland in this section. 

Work Permit in France

Here is how a work permit is obtained in France:

Eligibility Requirements for a Work Permit in France:

The applicants must meet the eligibility criteria listed below in order to become eligible for a France Work Visa:

  • The applicants are required to have a valid passport.
  • The applicants must have been offered a job in France.
  • You are required to have all the necessary documents that are specified in the application form. 
  • The candidates can only work within the scope of work time specified in their respective work permits and cannot exceed the specified time. 
  • One will also need to give the documents listed below: 
  1. A duly filled France visa application form,
  2. A valid passport with expiry at least 3 months beyond the intended duration of stay,
  3. A photocopy of the first and last page of the passport,
  4. Copies of all education qualifications,
  5. CV of the employee,
  6. Recent color photographs,
  7. Company’s appointment letter,
  8. Employer’s reference letter,
  9. Past employment testimonials, and 
  10. A detailed description of the type of work to be performed by the applicant in France

Steps to Apply for France Work Permit

Follow the steps provided below in order to apply for a work permit in France

1st Step: Figure out the type of permit you are applying for, on the basis of job role and duration of employment. 

2nd Step: Duly fill out the application for the work permit. 

3rd Step: Gather all the necessary documents for the France work permit.

4th Step: Schedule an appointment to submit the mandatory documents and Biometrics at VAC (Visa Application Centre).

5th Step: Now, you will have to wait for the decision from the Embassy/Consulate.

The work visa processing time for France is usually about 15 to 20 working days after you have given the documents to the French Embassy/Consulate.

PR in France 

If you wish to live in France for an extended time, or even permanently, you can be eligible for a France permanent residence permit or French citizenship after five years. This time is reduced in some situations like marriage to or becoming a parent of a French national.

Work Permit in Ireland

Let’s understand the process of obtaining a work permit in Ireland:

Eligibility for a Work Permit in Ireland

You are required to meet the eligibility requirements provided below to obtain a work permit in Ireland:

  • The applicants have to be hired on a temporary basis. They might also get a bid from a company in Ireland. 
  • The company needs to clear the Labour Markets Needs Test if the candidate is applying for a work visa (other than a Critical Skills Employment visa). 
  • This test indicates that the Irish-descent employer was unable to fill the vacancy with a qualified Irish or EU/EEA/Swiss citizen.
  • If you want to become eligible for a Critical Skills Employment Permit, you will need to earn at least €30,000 or €80,000 per year. This depends on the kind of work you are seeking.
  • Applicants for General Work Permits have to have a minimum annual wage of €30,000.
  • The minimum annual wage needs to meet the National Minimum Wage, except for the General Employment Permit and Critical Skills Employment Permit. 
  • The Irish company that hires the applicant of a work visa is required to employ at least 50% of its personnel from the EU, EEA, or Switzerland.

Apply for a Work Permit in Ireland

You need to first identify the type of work permit you desire to apply for. Post figuring out the required work permit, the applicant needs to finish the associated application form. The Irish work permit takes roughly 13 weeks to process. The applicants check the status of their work visa for Ireland on the DBEI website.

PR in Ireland

If you are a non-EEA national who has been legally staying in Ireland for the last 5 years and possess a work permit, you can become eligible for permanent residence in Ireland.

Which Country is Better?

The above comparison demonstrates the process of obtaining a work permit and permanent residency is easier in Ireland than in France. As a result, Ireland will be awarded +2 points in this section of France vs Ireland. 

Also Read: How To Choose The Right Study Abroad Destination

Average Salaries: France vs Ireland

The average annual salary after graduation is €39,800 in France according to WeAreDevelopers, while it is €48,058 after postgraduation as per Glassdoor. In Ireland, the average salary after graduation is €33,383 to €50,000 annually, while it is €65,000 a year after postgraduation. 

Which Country is Better?

As apparent from the above comparison, the average salary in Ireland is more than the average salary in France. Hence, we will award a score of +2 points to Ireland in this section of France vs Ireland. 

Also Read: Best Countries to Study Abroad

Other Major Elements

There are some other crucial considerations that you need to remember when selecting a country for pursuing education. Here are some of these significant considerations:


France experiences dry summers and wet winters. In the case of Ireland, the Atlantic Ocean greatly affects its climate. The temperatures are kept temperate in the country by warm ocean currents. 


Both France and Ireland are known to be very safe countries for international students. However, you need to follow the instructions of local authorities including movement restrictions which are related to any ongoing police action.

Culture for International Students

The warm and welcoming nature of French people makes the journey of international students in France much easier. On the other hand, Ireland is popular for its rich history, thriving cultural traditions, magnificent castles, and breathtaking scenery. 

Also Read: Best Universities in Ireland


After computing the total scores of France and Ireland, we find that France scored 10 points whereas Ireland scored 2 points. Hence, France is the winner of this contest.

But please note that both France and Ireland have their own advantages and disadvantages. So, carefully select a degree before you apply for admission to any of the country’s universities. Ensure that you assess the available educational facilities and financial aid for the program want to pursue in order to make a better-informed decision. With that being said, both France and Ireland are amazing study-abroad destinations, offering equal opportunities to overseas students. 

Also Read: MBA in Ireland


Ques 1. Is Ireland a good destination for international students?

Ans. Ireland is considered to be an ideal destination for overseas students. Along with high-quality education, the country also offers ample job opportunities.

Ques 2. Is France safe for Indian students?

Ans. Yes, France is a very safe country. The country rarely experiences any serious crime and the ragging cases in the colleges/universities are negligible.

Ques 3. Why study in France for Indian students?

Ans. With its high-quality education, multicultural environment, and career opportunities, France is an ideal destination for Indian students. 

So, this was all about France vs Ireland. Many Indian students dream of pursuing education in foreign nations due to the exposure and career growth they offer. Consider joining a free counselling session with Leverage Edu if you plan to study abroad

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