Expat population in France, 2021

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Are you an expat who settled in France in 2019? Ever wonder how many other expats of different nationalities moved to France at the same time as you?

As the year comes to a close, here are the estimated statistics of expats who have moved to France and called it home in 2019.

Where do expats settle in France?

Paris is an easy guess, being the biggest city in France and full of culture, entertainment, and lots of other expats (approximately 22,000 and counting)! But there are several other less flashy places in France where expats like to settle down too.

The Dordogne region is a good example. It’s sometimes referred to as “Little England” given the amount of British expats that move there. Located in the southwestern area of the country, the Dordogne is full of wide countrysides and maintains a slower way of life. Bergerac and Bordeaux are the closest major towns, in the Nouvelle Aquitaine region and if you go a little farther south, you’ll reach the Occitanie region and Toulouse, another highly-coveted expat town, where about 16,000 expats live.

Other popular regions include the northern French coasts of Normandy and Brittany. While it offers the best proximity for Brits in France who want to visit home, there are also dozens of picturesque French towns, long beaches and beautiful cliffs that don’t make you want to leave. Roughly 5,000 or so expats live in Normandy, while around 14,000 live in Brittany.

The Rhône region is another popular expat destination. With the city of Lyon not far away and its proximity to the French Alps and Switzerland, it’s hard not to see why about 12,000 expats have chosen to settle down there!

How many British expats are there in France?

There are an estimated 150,000 British expats in France and counting. And with Brexit fears, this number is likely to jump even higher in the coming years.

From an expat census taken in 2011, 15% of British expats in France were under 17 years old; 52% were between 18 and 59; and the remaining 33% were over 60 years old.

The census also found that 43% of these expats who were between 15 and 64 were not working or looking for a job -- although many in this age group are students or retirees.

According to a 2014 census, about 20% of expats from 25 to 54 settled in the Île-de-France region (aka, where Paris is!). About 26% of them settled in the southwestern Nouvelle-Aquitaine region (the Dordogne and Bordeaux) and about 13% in the further southwestern Occitanie region (Toulouse and Nîmes).

How many American expats are there in France?

According to the American Embassy, there were about 100,000 American expats in France in 2010. This has likely increased in recent years. There are about 10,000 Americans living in Paris alone.