Revealed: The essential smartphone apps you need for living in France

Revealed: The essential smartphone apps you need for living in France
These days there are apps for everything from transport to finding the best places to eat out. And there are some that are designed specifically for life in France. Here are ten of the best.
Apps are designed to make life easier, and for those living in a foreign country anything that can help you run things more smoothly is worth its weight in gold. 
That's why we asked our readers to tell us what their essential apps for life in France were, and many of the same ones kept cropping up.
These covered a variety of subjects from transport and weather, to jobs, food, entertainment… and of course, as this is France, strikes. 
Many of you suggested language learning apps and we'd like to point you to an article dedicated to that subject here
We'd also like to say thank you to those of you who mentioned The Local app. 
Here's our list of ten of the best apps.
If you're someone who likes to keep an eye on the weather around France, the Meteo France app could prove essential for your life here, according to our readers. The app provides a ten-day forecast for France and around the world so you can follow the weather in your home country too. 
It's also handy for finding out when there are weather warnings in place in your area. 
We'd also like to give an honorable mention to the Meteo Consult Marine app, recommended by readers who live in coastal areas of France.
“It gives tide times, wind speeds and direction, sea state etc for any coastal location in France, essential for sailing,” said Chris Burdess.
Want to take a train in France? This is the app to use. Make sure to click on 'train' – if that's what you need (as you can also book buses and air travel as well as accommodation) and you'll get all the info you need, as well as the best prices. This app is “essential for train travel, it's an excellent app,” one reader said.
Other recommended transport apps, included the French capital's transport operator RATP's app, which is handy for finding out how to get around Paris and the greater Paris region of Ile-de-France. 
You can also use it to find out the time of the next RER, Metro, bus and night buses, trama and airport lines.
Similarly, France's national rail company SNCF has an app which is useful if you tend to travel around the country by train. It gives you door-to-door itineraries and real-time information on your journeys even if you don't have a signal. 
ANALYSIS: Are train services in rural France set to finally be derailed?
Photo: AFP

If you're looking for a GP or any other kind of doctor or hospital near you and want to make an appointment, this is a great place to go. It's free and very easy to use: you just type in what you're looking for and where you live, and it comes up with choice of doctors closest to you. You'll receive appointment reminders by text and maps of how to get there.

Ameli is the website of the CPAM (Caisse Primaire d'Assurance Maladie) which is the organization dealing with state covered healthcare in France. Many readers listed this app, where you can find anything relating to your French healthcare admin. Ameli keeps track of all your personal health information, including your refunds and is a handy app to have at hand.

Finding someone to do odd jobs can be tricky, especially if you're new to an area and struggle with the language. Help is at hand with Youpijob where you'll be able to find a person to do a whole range of jobs from gardening to cleaning to looking after your dog.
“All the work is guaranteed, I can use the app to help translate and message my workers, I can use their review system to make sure I hire great people, and they don't get paid until after the work is completed,” one enthusiastic reader explained. “I have been using it for a year, and it has been a lifeline to get things done here in France, especially for an Expat”.  
You know you're in France when you have this app on your phone! C'est la grève lists all the strikes going on across the country.
“You are alerted immediately to all strikes, when they are happening, where and the duration,” commented one reader. It even allows you to select a geographic location to find out what's going on near you.
Screengrab/Cestlagreve app

The CAF is the organization that deals with family state benefits and the app proves useful for families as it gathers all the admin relating to family benefits, but also housing benefits and some social benefits, and also features all the latest updates and information.
Another app recommended by several readers which comes in handy for personal admin is the government-run Impots.gouv app which allows you to access your personal tax information quickly and easily. You can also use it for paying your taxes when the time comes. 

If you want to eat out where other French people do, La Fourchette lists a huge selection of restaurants (around 40,000) in all of France's main cities, with ratings, comments, photos and lots of special offers.
The app is easy to use, and, as one reader pointed out, if you're not confident about booking a table over the phone, you can do it here without having to speak a word of French.
The best smartphone apps for learning French

You'll need to understand French to use this cooking app, but if you do, you'll find thousands of recipe ideas here which you search by typing in ingredients, types of dishes and there are a host of videos to help you cook. It's a favourite with French people. 

Another reader favourite. If you like going to cinema, this is the app to use. Allocine features the film listings and times of all the cinemas in France and a range of other useful information about anything related to films.


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