For members


Ameli: How to create your online French social security account

The French online platform Ameli is a gateway to access information and crucial health documents, including the Covid vaccination certificate that could soon be vital for travel.

Ameli: How to create your online French social security account
The homepage of Photo: Marion BERARD / AFP

What is Ameli?

We’re not talking about the classic French film starring Audrey Tautou (that’s Amélie or Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amélie  Poulain if you’re in France).

Ameli – an acronym for assurance maladie en ligne (health insurance online) – is the online platform of the French social security scheme, Assurance Maladie.

Everyone living in France should register with the French health system to get the card that gives you access to refunded healthcare, carte vitale.

READ ALSO How to get a carte vitale and why you need one

If you have a carte vitale, you can create an Ameli personal account. Not everyone does, it is voluntary and you can get around it, but it will give you easy access to health related services and documents.

It’s recently taken on new importance when the French government announced that this platform will be how people already vaccinated can access the new attestations de vaccination Covid-19 (vaccination certificates)that you can use to create a ‘health passport’ for access to travel and some leisure activities this summer. 

Why do I need it?

Ameli is generally helpful because speeds up the process of all health insurance-related procedures and makes it possible to keep track of medical expenses and refunds.

It’s also a place to access useful documents, as well as vaccination certificates, if you ever need to prove your right to healthcare in France, you can head to Ameli to download an attestation des droits which outlines that you are entitled to healthcare in France.

You can also do practical things like order a new carte vitale if yours has been lost or stolen or register a change in your personal details such as a new address or bank account.

READ ALSO: France’s new vaccination certificates ‘first step’ towards health passport

Since May 3rd everyone in France receives a vaccination certificate after their first injection of the Covid vaccination.

Those who got vaccinated prior to that date and didn’t get a certificate will be able to access them on their Ameli account “from the second half of May,” according to digital affairs minister Cedric O.

However people without access to an Ameli account or who struggle with online procedures could ask to get their vaccination certificate sent by post, Assurance Maladie noted on their website

How to register

Go to Click on “je crée mon compte” (I’m creating my account). If you can’t find it, click HERE.

Fill out your name, social security number (the one on your carte vitale), date of birth and post code.

Photo: Ameli, Assurance Maladie

Click “continuer“.

After that, there are two main methods to go on to register.

1. The system knows your details

Firstly, if your carte vitale is activated and Assurance Maladie already has your bank details registered, things are quite easy.

Simply fill in the missing the seven last digits of your Iban bank number, the one Assurance Maladie uses to reimburse your medical expenses. The first digits will be there already, so you can easily double check that you are using the right one.

Then do the same for the missing digits of your carte vitale serial number (not your social security number), which is written next to your photo on the card. If you have a carte vitale without a photo, the number is on the top left corner.

Reader question: Can you get a Covid vaccine in France without a carte vitale?

You will then be asked to accept the general conditions (tick the box for yes) before continuing to the next page, where you get to choose a password (the password criteria are listed on the site).

After that you just need to fill out the remaining information, including your email address (personal, not professional email) – and phone number.

You will then receive an email with a link that you have to click on to validate your account. You have seven days to do this, if you wait longer than that you will have to start over again.

It is important to choose an email address that you frequently check, as Assurance Maladie will send you updates and notify you when new documents are available on your account.

2. The system does not know your details

If, however, the system lacks your bank and health card details, there is another way to register though “France connect”.

Going back to the first step where you fill in your social security number, click on the France connect-button:

The next step is to choose one of the options for identifying yourself, for example through your tax declaration information, the box called

Fill in your numéro fiscal and your password – the information you use for logging in to declare your taxes online – and continue.

The system should then recognise you and you will be able to proceed, filling out the same information as outlined above.

Both procedures are explained step by step (in French) in the video below:

If you’re struggling..

If for some reason you are unable to register, there are a few other options. One is to go to see one of the nearest Assurance Maladie offices to get in-person help. You can find a list over the points d’acceuil HERE (remember to select your own area).

If you want to avoid going into one of their offices, you can call the Ameli helpline at 3646 (free service number) from Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 5pm. If you are calling from one of France’s overseas territories the number is the same, but opening hours vary.

There is also a phone line for English speakers: 09 74 75 36 46 (from France). 

There’s also a chatbot called ameliBot on the website where it is possible to ask questions.

More information in English on the Assurance Maladie website, link HERE.

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For members


Revealed: The best cities in France to be a student

Every year, QS best student cities releases its ranking of the world's most student-friendly locations. This year four French cities made the list.

Revealed: The best cities in France to be a student

As a student, some cities are more attractive than others. Each year QS rankings assess 140 cities around the world based on what they have to offer students in terms of their affordability, quality of life, the opinions of former students who studied there, as well as general desirability, employer activity, and how many students live there. 

This year, for the 2023 ranking, five French cities – Paris, Lyon, Toulouse, and Montpellier – made the list, with Paris making the top 10. 

Paris, Lyon and Toulouse have been listed in the ‘best cities’ ranking for several years, but this will be the first year for Montpellier. In order to be included, the population must be a minimum of 250,000 people and the city must be home to at least two universities that have been listed in the QS World University Rankings.

READ ALSO 8 ways to save money as a student in France

This year, France’s cities have moved up in the list. Across the board, two factors improved: “student mix” and desirability. The former measures what proportion of the city is made up of students, as well as the diversity of students and the inclusivity of the city and country for students, while the latter measures general questions like safety, pollution, and how appealing the city is to respondents.

On the other hand, affordability and “student voice” – the rating students gave the city’s friendliness, sustainability, diversity, etc, as well as how many students continue to live there after graduation – went down this year. However, affordability has decreased across the board in student cities around the world. 

France’s cities

Paris – The French capital came in 8th place worldwide and remains an extremely attractive destination for potential students. Paris is home to nine institutions ranked on the QS World University Rankings, and scored well with employment prospects.

The city came in seventh place for “employer activity” this year. The ranking said this is due to Paris graduates being “highly respected by employers” and that “there are lots of international firms based in the city’s business district which frequently hire skilled graduates.” In the student survey, the prospect of being surrounded by “beautiful monuments, history and culture” was appealing, as well as Paris’ nightlife. 

READ ALSO These are the culture shocks you will experience as a foreign student in Paris

Lyon – The gastronomy centre of France ranked 45th in the world, scoring well in terms of “student mix” and affordability. Lyon was credited for low tuition fees for international students. In surveys, students reported enjoying the ‘diversity of students from across the world’ in Lyon.

Toulouse – La ville rose in France’s south west moved up eight places in the ranking this year. Making it into the top 100, Toulouse came out at 78th. Toulouse was praised for its cost of living, as the city offers significantly lower average costs for rent – for example, a one bedroom apartment in the city centre an average of €712 per month, compared to €1,410 in Paris.

Montpellier – This year was Montpellier’s debut on the list, ranking 199th. The city performed well for its first year, especially in terms of affordability – ranking 35th.  

What about the non-French cities?

An overall trend is that cities are becoming less affordable for students.

In terms of rankings, London, held onto its first place spot, which it has had for the past four years, while Seoul and Munich tied for second place. The other European cities to make the top 10 list were Zurich (4th) and Berlin (6th).