School Trips To France
Over 150 school groups chose Equity for their educational trip to France last year.
School trips to France are one of the most popular and cost-effective options outside of the UK for Equity groups. Practically on our doorstep, France offers an extensive list of attractions that can be enjoyed all year-round. Whether you want to take to the slopes in the winter months or bask in the summer sun in Strasbourg, we’ll ensure you have an unforgettable trip!
France is often the forerunner for a French Language trip, but we can also provide a variety of subject specific tours including Art & Design, Business Studies, Dance, History, Maths, Music and even Science! Another option to consider is we can offer cross-curricular tours, which provide an excellent way for combining different subject areas, maximising on learning outcomes.
With an endless selection of attractions, longer than the iconic Champs-Elyees, it’s no surprise Paris is one of our most popular destinations for school tours. Paris offers a wealth of excursions including the opulent Palace of Versailles, Montparnasse Tower Observation Deck and the Eiffel Tower. Paris is ideal for all subjects, but is a favoured option for Art and Design students because of its many world-class museums and art galleries such as The Louvre and Centre Pompidou.
Site of the D-Day Landings, Normandy is an ideal location for Key Stage 3 students, as students can learn about the defining moments of WW2 on the beaches of Juno, Omaha and Gold or learn more about the Norman Conquest by William the Conqueror at Bayeux Cathedral and the Bayeux Tapestry Museum.
Located in Northern France, the Opal Coast is a popular option for primary school groups due to its close proximity to the UK and easy access from the Port of Dover. Pupils can visit a local French bakery and watch traditional baguette making or taste chocolate at an authentic chocolaterie.
Do we need a visa to travel to France?
France is a member of the Schengen Area and European Union, which means that if you are travelling from a EU member country or are a citizen of the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the US, you can freely travel to France for a total of 90 days without a visa.
Please note that entry requirements can change at any time. Your designated Group Coordinator will be in touch if there are any changes to visa regulations before your school trip to France.
How will Brexit affect travelling to France?
In accordance with UK Government advice, the rules on travel will stay the same until the end of the Brexit transition period on 31st December 2020. During this time you will be able to travel to countries in the Schengen area or the EU with your UK passport.
We are keeping a close eye on the latest government guidance on travel within the EU and will keep you updated if there are any changes.
When is the best time of year to visit France with a school group?
The best time of year to visit France often depends on what you are planning to do with your group.
Paris, Disneyland and Strasbourg are generally great to visit all-year-round, each season brings along its own unique atmosphere.
On the other hand, we’d advise visiting the beaches of Normandy, the battlefields of the Somme, the Opal Coast, the Loire Valley and Brittany in spring or summer to take advantage of the warmer and more reliable weather.
If you’re thinking of travelling to France in November or December you should definitely take advantage of the festive Christmas Markets in Lille and Paris.
Lastly, if you’re planning a school ski trip to France, the slopes are often open from late December to early April in the French Alps.
What is the best way for a school group to travel to France?
A majority of our groups travel to France by coach, either crossing the channel by ferry or the Channel Tunnel. Travelling by coach often works out more cost effective for large groups.
There’s also the option to fly to France, with direct links from the UK’s main airports to Paris. This is certainly a lot quicker, however, it can sometimes work out more expensive than by coach.
Can we use our mobile phones in France?
You will need to check the terms and conditions of your mobile phone network plan to see whether data usage in the EU is covered.
Can we drink water from the tap in France?
Tap water is considered to be safe in France unless marked otherwise. You may want to advise your group to bring along their own reusable water bottles which can be topped up.
Is tipping customary in France?
Tipping is often left to the discretion of the customer in France, which can often be slightly confusing to those travelling to France for the first time.
A majority of restaurants in France will include a service fee within the bill, which usually equates to 5% - 10%. It is not absolutely necessary, but is greatly appreciated by waiting staff.
If you are on a free guided walking tour, you are generally expected to tip what you feel the tour is worth, as this could be the main source of income for the tour guide. The general consensus is to usually tip between €5 - €8pp, but understandably this may be a lot for large groups. We would advise to discuss this with your Group Coordinator if you have any queries.
Some groups will also tip their coach driver, this is up to the discretion of the Party Leader.
Where is the best place in France for a French Language trip?
Each city or region in France has its own personality and unique attractions, but it really depends on what you’re looking for.
Paris is often the first choice for many school and college groups. A wide variety of attractions to choose from, the size of the city and superb transport links make it an obvious choice.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for somewhere quieter or more traditional, we’d highly recommend Strasbourg, Brittany and the Loire Valley.
Many groups also choose to combine their French trip with other subjects such as history. If this is the case for you, heading over to Normandy is a great option, which boasts superb food markets, the D-Day landing beaches and is a short distance from Mont-Saint-Michel, one of France’s most loved UNESCO-listed World Heritage sites.
What is the current Coronavirus advice and government recommendations in regards to school trips to France?
As a tour operator we follow the latest Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCDO) guidance. For the latest travel advice to France please see: gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france.
If you have any queries about an upcoming school trip to France with us please email your designated Group Coordinator or email firstname.lastname@example.org which will be forwarded onto the relevant member of staff.
Take a look at our recommended destinations for schools trips to France.
If there is a French destination you’re particularly interested in and can’t see it listed, please contact us and we can provide a quote for you. We can also tailor our tour itineraries to meet your specific needs.