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How to find accommodation in Lyon

By Jean
Reading Time: 5 minutes
accommodation in lyon

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Moving to France as an international student can be an exhilarating experience, filled with new opportunities and adventures. However, one of the first hurdles you’ll encounter is finding suitable accommodation in France. 

Lyon, known for its vibrant culture, excellent universities, and rich history, is a popular choice for international students seeking an immersive French experience outside of Paris.

This guide is designed to simplify your search for accommodation in Lyon, helping you find a place that meets both your needs and budget.

accommodation in lyon

When to Start Searching for Accommodation?

Starting your search for accommodation in Lyon well in advance is crucial, particularly because of the high demand in popular student cities. This demand spikes notably during peak seasons, such as the summer vacation period. Many students are simultaneously searching for their new homes in preparation for the upcoming academic year starting in September.

By beginning your search several months prior to your move, you not only increase your chances of finding a suitable place that meets your preferences and budget but also avoid the intense competition.

Where to Live in Lyon?

Lyon is divided into 9 arrondissements, each with its unique character and charm. For students, certain neighbourhoods stand out for their affordability, proximity to universities, and vibrant student communities.

Here are some arrondissements worth considering:

  • Presqu’île (1st and 2nd Arrondissements): The heart of Lyon, known for its vibrant atmosphere, cultural sites, and proximity to many universities. It’s ideal for students who want to be in the center of everything.
  • La Croix-Rousse (4th Arrondissement): Famous for its bohemian vibe, cafes, and markets. It’s a bit hilly but offers great views and a strong community feeling, suitable for students looking for a unique living experience.
  • Vieux Lyon (5th Arrondissement): The historic part of the city, known for its Renaissance architecture and narrow streets. It offers a picturesque and tranquil environment, perfect for those who appreciate history and charm.
  • Part-Dieu (3rd Arrondissement): Known as the business district, it’s also home to a large shopping mall and various entertainment options. Its central location and excellent public transport links make it a convenient choice for students.
  • Guillotière (7th Arrondissement): Diverse and lively, with plenty of affordable eating and drinking options. It’s popular among students due to its affordable housing and vibrant nightlife.

accommodation in lyon

Assess Your Criteria

What Type of Property?

Determining what type of rental you need is crucial. Lyon offers a range of options to fit various budgets and preferences:

  • Studios: Perfect for those who value privacy. These can range from affordable to luxury, depending on the location.
  • Furnished Apartments: Ideal for those who prefer a hassle-free move. They’re more expensive but save on the cost of buying furniture.
  • Student Residences: Managed by universities or private companies, offering a sense of community and often, lower prices.
  • Host Families: A great option for immersing yourself in French culture and practising the language, usually with meals included.

Which Amenities?

Consider what is absolutely necessary for you to feel at home and what you can compromise on.

  • Laundry Facilities: Is it essential to have laundry facilities in your building?
  • Air Conditioning: How important is air conditioning for you?
  • Parking: Will you need a designated parking spot near your place?
  • Outdoor Space: Do you desire outdoor space like a balcony or garden?
  • Storage Space: What’s your minimum requirement for storage space?
  • Pet-Friendly: Is a pet-friendly environment necessary?
  • Wi-Fi: What are your expectations for Wi-Fi speed and reliability?
  • Furnishings: Would you prefer a furnished or unfurnished apartment?
  • Accessibility Features: Are specific accessibility features (like elevator access) a requirement for you?
  • Public Transport Access: How crucial is nearby public transportation for you?
  • Noise Level: Do you prefer a quiet area or are you okay with some noise?

accommodation in lyon

Assess Your Budget

Before diving into the search for your ideal accommodation in Lyon, it’s essential to assess your budget carefully.

Get an Estimate

Wondering how much does it cost to live and study in Lyon? Use our cost of living calculator to find out! Get an estimate here:

Please note that estimates are based on averages, and your actual rent will vary depending on your location in Lyon, the duration of your contract, the size of the property, whether it is an old, new, or reformed property, among other factors.

Financial Aids

Many students can reduce their housing costs by receiving housing allowances from the government. As an international student with a long-term student visa, you might be eligible for housing assistance from the French government, managed by the CAF (Caisse d’Allocations Familiales). This aid can significantly reduce your housing costs, making it a worthwhile option to explore.

Various types of housing financial assistance are available, such as APL, ALS, or ALF, and the amount of the allowance can vary. For a single person, the average monthly APL might be around €150 for ordinary rental situations.

Many factors impact the amount you will receive, but you can make a simulation here:

accommodation in lyon

Find Accommodation in Lyon Without the Need for A Guarantor

One significant hurdle international students face when searching for accommodation is the requirement for a guarantor, coupled with the extensive paperwork involved. This requirement can be daunting, as it necessitates finding someone who is financially stable and willing to vouch for the student’s ability to pay rent, which is challenging for those without local contacts.

We have the solution for you! Go! Go! France partners with Uniplaces and HousingAnywhere, two of the best online marketplaces for booking student accommodation, to offer you a wide selection of options in France.


Founded in 2012, Uniplaces has rapidly grown into a key player in the student accommodation sector, operating across major cities in Europe and facilitating online bookings. There’s no bureaucracy, no need for a guarantor, and Uniplaces provides multilingual support, a 24-hour move-in policy, an accuracy check for each listing, and an official prepaid accommodation certificate for those requiring a visa.

Discover superb furnished apartments, studios, shared houses and student residences for rent! Book your accommodation in Lyon 100% online with our accommodation finder here:


HousingAnywhere, launched in 2009, operates in over 125 cities across the United States and Europe. The platform ensures a streamlined booking process where payments are safeguarded until after the tenant moves in, providing a sense of security for both tenants and landlords​.

Check more options in Lyon here:

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