Vanderbilt in France

Travel tips


Via Paris:

By plane:
From Paris it is easy to get a connecting flight to Marseille-Marignane airport. There are usually several flights each day from Roissy/Charles de Gaulle airport. If you arrive at Orly Sud airport you have to take a free bus (navette) to Orly Ouest airport, where you catch the plane for Marseille. There are information booths located in each airport. ASK for help if you need it!  We recommend that you check your bags all the way to Marseille so that you do not have to deal with them in Paris. In any case, NEVER leave your luggage unattended.
After arriving at the Marseille/Marignane airport find the bus (called a car or a navette) to Aix-en-Provence. The cost is approximately 8.20 € and it takes about 30 minutes. When the bus arrives in Aix-en-Provence at the bus station (la gare routière), you will need to take a taxi to the Vanderbilt-in-France center, located at 15 rue Cardinale. If you arrive at the airport with several other people, you might consider taking a taxi all the way from the airport. The cost will be at least 40 to 50 € (day-night).

Navette Airport-TGV-Aix trajectory


By train:
If you plan to take the train from Paris, you can access the TGV (Train à grande vitesse) directly at the Roissy/Charles de Gaulle Airport. The TGV arrives in Aix-en-Provence (at the Gare de l’Arbois) in 3 1/2 hours. You must have a reservation, which you can make in advance or at the airport or train station. From the TGV station you can either take a taxi (30-35 €) directly to the Vanderbilt in France center located at 15 rue Cardinale in Aix-en-Provence, OR you can take the shuttle (4.10 €)  to the bus station (la gare routière) in Aix-en-Provence and a taxi from there to the Vanderbilt in France center (10 €).

Via Nice:

Should you arrive in Nice, the easiest and cheapest way to Aix-en-Provence is to take the bus from the airport to Aix-en-Provence. The cost should be around 20 € (student price). The bus leaves from the airport; you can inquire at the information desk. If you are already in Nice, the bus departs from the center of town: Place Masséna. Do not forget to wave for it!  The bus company is Cars Phocéens; there are three departures per day (5:45 am, 10:00 am, 5:45 pm, except Sundays and holidays when there is only one at 5:30 pm). The bus arrives in Aix-en-Provence at bus station (la gare routière). NOTE: Another bus service leaves the Nice airport at 1:30 pm and stops in many towns, taking much longer, and arrives in Aix-en-Provence at 3:55 pm.

Note: Buses pass rapidly and may not stop automatically if the driver does not see anyone waiting. Therefore, you should be at the bus stop and be prepared to flag down the bus if necessary.

From the bus station in Aix-en-Provence, take a taxi to the Vanderbilt in France center located at 15 rue Cardinale.


Most of the taxi drivers in Aix-en-Provence know where the Vanderbilt in France (ViF) center is located as they have been helping our students arrive for years. Just give them the address, 15 rue Cardinale, and if they do not seem to know where that is say “c’est à côté du Musée Granet et de l’église St. Jean de Malte.” The cost of the taxi should be around 8-10€ (from the bus station) or 40-50 € (from airport) according to the number of passengers and amount of luggage.

Please try to arrive at the Vanderbilt in France center during regular office hours (M-F 9-5). We will be waiting for you there to help you get settled. If you arrive and find the Vanderbilt in France center closed, you will need to spend the night in a hotel. We recommend one of the following:

  • HOTEL CARDINAL ( 04 located across the street from ViF at 17 rue Cardinale
  • HOTEL DES 4 DAUPHINS (04 42 38 16 39), 54, rue Roux Alphéran,just behind ViF
  • HOTEL CONCORDE (04 located at 68 blvd. Roi René, 2 blocks from ViF

The evening you arrive you will have dinner at a restaurant near ViF along with others in the group and the French tutors. If you arrive later than 7pm you can still meet everyone and get help settling either in your room or in the hotel.

Please keep these phone numbers with you at all times to notify us of change in travel plans or other emergencies:

011 334 42 38 14 79 (from US) | 04 42 38 14 79 (from France)

Director’s (Maité Monchal) cell phone
011 336 22 33 67 56 (from US) | 06 22 33 67 56 (from France)


  • Pack lightly as you will be handling your own luggage quite a bit.
  • We recommend that you bring 150€ (in 10 & 20 banknotes) from home. There are bureaux de change in the airports but their rates are likely to be higher.  There is also an ATM machine available in the airport to withdraw money in euros. Bon Voyage!


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Your Unique Experience

Vanderbilt in France is small enough to offer you the chance to tailor your study abroad experience to your needs. You can take classes in French or English and with pre-approval classes can fulfill requirements in most majors. Work in the community and meet French students-- whatever your goals, we'll help you make your semester or year abroad unforgettable!