I recently completed the process to renew my long-stay visa at the Paris Préfecture on September 8. Less than two months later, on October 23, I received a text message from the number 38656 that my Titre de Séjour was ready to be picked up!
The message informed me that I needed to pay 225€ in tax. It also gave me a date and time during which I could pick up my CDS as well as what I needed to bring. My time slot was scheduled for November 18, about three and a half weeks later.
Note: Titre de Séjour (TDS) and Carte de Séjour (CDS) can be used interchangeably. They mean the same thing – your French residence permit!
If you’re new here, I’m an American living in Paris and sharing everything I learn about how to navigate French bureaucracy and legally live in this beautiful country.
Paying the Tax
You can easily pay the Visa tax online. I did it using my American credit card. Once you pay the tax, you’ll get a barcode which you need to show at your appointment.
It’s a bit of a clunky online system but the gist of it goes:
- Click “Débuter l’achat”
- Select “Titre pour étrangers”
- Enter the amount
- Click “Valider”
- Make the Payment and Enter Your Email
- Save the Receipt!
What to Bring
My text message said I needed to bring my passport, my récépissé, my current Carte de Séjour (for me, just the stamp in my passport), and the “Timbres” which prove I paid the tax.
Picking Up the Card
I arrived at the Préfecture right at the beginning of my noted time slot. They let me through and I made my way to the same outdoor hallway I visited when renewing my visa a few months prior.
After waiting in line for about 15 minutes, I walked up to the window and told the woman my name. She asked me to show her the barcode with my tax. I did so and she gave me a ticket to wait to speak to one of the employees.
A minute later, my number was called. I sat down at the same kind of little counter that I went to when submitting my renewal application.
I again gave my name and showed my tax before getting my little Carte de Séjour!
It is much smaller than I thought, only the size of my credit card which fits nicely in my wallet! For some reason, I thought they were bigger, but alas, they’re quite small and practical.
The woman asked me to verify that my name, address, and birthday were all correct. I did so and was out the door!
The entire process took around 20 minutes, much faster than the last time I was at the Préfecture!
I hope your pick-up process goes as smoothly as mine! I recommend taking photos of your card right away in case you lose it! Bonne chance…
Thank you for your helpful info.
The day you went to the prefecture for the interview (give documents), do they ask you why you(us) want to continue the stay in France?
I am very worried about this, wonder what to say if asked?
No, they did not. You can just say you want to continue to explore France as a tourist.
Thank you for the reply. Well noted. Hope they accept this, if asked.
My name is Ashley and I just moved to Paris to be with my French husband in November and received my visa long séjour (in my passport). I have paid my tax but have heard nothing from any OFII office or prefecture to meet for my carte de séjour or formation (civic and langauge classes). Emailing the OFII office doesnt get anywhere and the same for the prefecture – do you have any advice on what to do? The process so far has not been straightforward in what is to come next – they said they would contact me but it has not happened so far. I really appreciate any advice or help!
I would just be patient!