Today, I want to tell you about my client Lola, who came to France in July 2017.
Lola wanted to come to France ever since she spent her spring semester studying abroad in Paris, and just knew she had to come back. In that way, she was a lot like me – I spent my whole second semester of my junior year in Paris planning how I would return as soon as possible. I even debated not leaving!
But Lola, who’s Canadian, had lived all over the world, and she was working in an art history museum in the US when she found me.
Now, the thing I love about her story is that Lola totally claims to have “manifested” me. Having seen the movie The Secret about attracting what you want into your life, Lola had taken steps towards manifesting her move to Paris LONG before she figured out how she was going to make it happen. She just didn’t know how it was possible.
She had Paris-themed deco in her bathroom and a “Take me to Paris!” button on her winter coat. She KNEW with every fibre of her being that she was making the move, and she already had the important elements of her life in Paris imprinted in vivid detail in her mind. She knew what her skills were, what her passions were, and what she wanted to do in life: share her love of art and of Pairs with the world, while living in the city center.
She began researching. And she stumbled across my Facebook group, Americans in France.
We set up a call, and she told me about how she LOVED her museum job, had majored in art history in college, and how her favourite part of studying in Paris was the Museum Studies class – where she had gotten to go to a different museum every class period, three times a week, and learn EVERYTHING about Paris art and history.
I asked her if she had ever thought about becoming a tour guide, and explained that she could get a “profession liberale” visa to work as a freelance tour guide for multiple companies in Paris, who are always enthusiastic about hiring autoentrepreneur tour guides with art history degrees. Her experience and her passion for art history and French history aligned perfectly with her museum experience, making her an ideal candidate for this type of job.
She’d have no trouble finding work with one or more of these companies, I explained, and she could even create her own tour experiences on platforms like AirBnb Experiences or her own website. The best part about this type of
And just like that. Lola had her “how.”
Over about 2 months, I helped Lola put together her business plan for her profession liberal visa application, drawing on her museum experience, love of Paris and all things art history, and her university studies to create a fan-freaking-tastic visa application package.
Today, Lola is a thriving tour guide in Paris, living on l’Ile Saint-Louis and working for 3 tour companies, making BANK during tourist season**, and traveling to all kinds of fantastic places – from champagne 🥂 producers near Reims, to the Normandy beaches and Mont Saint Michel, to walking tours of Montmartre and the Eiffel Tower.
She recently renewed her initial visa and she is well on her way to French residency, and as long as she continues her success, she’ll be able to live and work in France indefinitely.
**written pre-Covid, of course!