Certificate of accommodation for France visa: why and how to get it?

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You wish to visit your relatives living in France for a period of less than 3 months? Do you want to welcome a friend or family member to France? Do you want this in order to obtain a visa that will allow you to stay more than 3 months in this country? Then you will need to obtain an certificate of accomodation for France visa. But what does it consist of and what are the steps to follow to obtain one? We explain everything here!

A certificate of accomodation for France visa, also commonly known as a hosting certificate for a visa, is a proof of accommodation that must be requested at the town hall by a person residing in France. This person must be the person who will host you for a maximum stay of 3 months. This formality is necessary to obtain a visa which will allow you to enter France for a longer period. Please note that this application only applies if you will be staying at a host’s home and not in a hotel or other type of tourist accommodation. In addition, the visitor must have health insurance to obtain it.


What is an accommodation certificate?

A certificate of acommodation for French visa is a document that allows the person hosting the visitor to certify on their honour that the visitor will be staying with them for a fixed period of less than three months. This document will be essential for obtaining identity papers, a driving licence, a residence permit, opening a bank account, or in other words, for all everyday actions. This document serves as proof of residence for all types of administrative procedures, in other words, it can serve as proof of residence for the visitor during his or her stay.

The people concerned include all foreigners coming to France to stay with a relative for a period of less than three months. It should be noted that some people are exempt from this requirement:

  • Nationals of the European Union and more generally of the European Economic Area (EEA).
  • People with a Schengen visa or a residence permit.
  • Person residing in France for humanitarian reasons or for a health emergency.


How to obtain a hosting certificate?

To obtain a hosting certificate for a visa as a host, you must be of legal age and be a landlord or tenant to prove that you can host the visitor(s) in question. Moreover, this application must only concern the main residence of the host. As far as the host is concerned, the foreigner must be accommodated free of charge for a maximum of three months. No profit should be generated by the host, or in other words, no rent should be charged to the visitor.

Afterwards, your application must be submitted and validated by the town hall. The mayor may decide to carry out an on-the-spot investigation to ensure that the accommodation is in good condition before granting the attestation. Once the certificate has been obtained and stamped by the mayor of your city, it must be sent to the foreign visitor who can then include it in his or her visa application for a possible longer stay in France. They must also present it when crossing the external borders of the Schengen area.

The town hall may refuse to issue the accommodation certificate in certain cases:

  • The supporting documents provided are not complete or are incorrect
  • The reception conditions are deemed to be poor.
  • Previous applications show a desire to circumvent the procedure.

In case of refusal, you have the possibility to appeal to the prefect within 2 months after the refusal of the mayor. If this appeal is also refused, you can lodge a contentious appeal with the administrative court.

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How much does the accommodation certificate cost?

The only cost for obtaining a visa reception certificate is to be paid by the host. This is the cost of the fiscal stamp for the hosting certificate, which is 30 euros. The latter can be purchased on the French government’s website for the sale of electronic tax stamps or directly from an office agent in paper format (tobacco shops etc.). In the case of an electronic stamp, you will receive a document with a 16-digit number that you will have to transmit when applying.


What documents do I need to provide to apply for a hosting certificate for a visa?

To apply for a hosting certificate for a visa, the host will have to provide several documents that are essential for the acceptance of the application by the mayor. You will need to enclose:

  • Proof of residence proving your status as owner or tenant (copy of lease, property tax notice etc.).
  • An identity document (identity card or residence permit if you do not have French nationality).
  • The passport number of the foreign visitor.
  • Proof of address (electricity bill, rent receipt, etc.).
  • A document showing your financial resources (salary slip, tax notice, etc.).
  • A tax stamp of 30 euros.

As the documents required may vary according to locality, please check with your local council beforehand.


How do I fill in the certificate of accommodation?

Fill in your certificate of accommodation for a French visa in a few steps by following this guide:

1. French host (all the following information concerns the host and not the visitor):

  • Family name.
  • First name(s).
  • Date of birth.
  • Nationality.
  • Passport (or identity card) number, date, and place of issue.
  • Postal address of the host.

2. Visa applicant (this time the information is for the foreign visitor):

  • Family name.
  • First name(s).
  • Date of birth.
  • Nationality.
  • Passport number.
  • Postal address in the applicant’s home country.
  • Only complete if you are travelling with your spouse.
  • Fill in only if you are travelling with your minor child(ren).
  • Enter the dates of stay (number of days included in this period).
  • Indicate the relationship between you and the French host (spouse, parents, brother/sister etc.).




Thanks to this guide, you now have the keys in hand to fill out your French visa accommodation certificate and travel safely!

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