Frequently Asked Questions

What will my new mailing address and phone number at the Abbey be?

[Your Name]
c/o The Eur-Am Center
1, Place du Collège
41400 Pontlevoy
France
Office Phone: (+011) 33.2. 54.32.99.39
Office VOIP (like a local call): (248) 484.7122
(248) 484.7127

Office Fax: (+011) 33.2.54.32.99.77

 

How do I get to the Abbey from Charles De Gaulle (CDG) Airport?

To take the TGV directly from the airport, go to the www.sncf.com in advance to book tickets. When you arrive in Paris at the Charles De Gaulle airport, follow the signs to go through customs and to claim your baggage. After you have gathered your belongings and exited from the gate, you need to make your way to the RER/SNCF train station. Follow the signs picturing a train (which will be labeled Gare SNCF), or ask an airport official if you need help.

You should purchase a one-way/aller simple ticket. The cost is approximately 30€ (be sure to ask for a discount if you are under 25 years old).

  »
You will be taking the TGV train from the airport (name: Airport CDG 2 TGV) to a train station called St Pierre des Corps. The TGV has assigned seats; examine your ticket to see where you will be sitting.
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From St Pierre des Corps you take the train to the city of Montrichard. This is a regional train where you can sit anywhere you want in 2nd class. If there is not a TGV available, you will need to go to the Gare Montparnasse or Gare d’Austerlitz in central Paris - these are two train stations that are not connected to the airport CDG. Take the bus, RER & metro or taxi to one of these train stations. If you choose one of these options, there is no need to book train reservations in advance. It is fine to purchase train tickets in the station.

PRICES LISTED ARE APPROXIMATE

The cost of bus fare is about 12€. Between 5:50 am and 11:00 pm, there are buses with either Air France or Roissybus. It takes about 40 to 50 minutes to get to the heart of Paris.

The cost of the RER is about 10€. Trains run every 15 minutes, and the journey takes about 35 minutes. Line B RER runs from CDG airport at Terminal 2 to Gare du Nord metro station. In this metro station take line 4 to Montparnasse Bienvenue; this is the stop of Gare Montparnasse. Or take the RER to Chatelet-les-Halles metro stop, and then take line 4 to Odeon, and then take line 10 to Gare d’Austerlitz. The cost of a metro ticket is 1.20€.

The cost of a taxi is about 45€. It takes about 45 minutes from CDG get to either of the train stations.

At the Gare Montparnasse or Gare Paris Austerlitz, you take the same trains:

You take a train in the Gare Montparnasse or Paris Austerlitz to St Pierre des Corps. The TGV has assigned seats; examine your ticket to see where you are sitting.

From St Pierre des Corps you take the train to Montrichard. This is a regional train where you can sit anywhere you want in 2nd class.

OR

If there are no trains to St Pierre des Corps from the Paris Austerlitz stationtake a train to Blois, or Onzain.

When you are in a train station, watch the big electronic board or the TV screens to see your departure information. It updates the information 15 - 30 minutes before your train is scheduled to depart. It will tell you which platform/voie to catch your train. As you leave the waiting area, make sure to compost your ticket in the orange device, which is called a composter. This is VERY important.

 

How do I get to the Abbey from Orly Airport?

From Orly Sud take sortie G-quai 1. From Orly Ouest take sortie G. Take the RER C to Gare Paris Austerlitz and follow the instructions for getting to the Abbey from Charles De Gaulle (CDG).

If you want to go between Paris and Orly only you can take the Orly Bus at Place Denfert Rochereau. It runs from 5:35 am to 11:00 pm and it costs 5.70€ one way.

» Once you arrive in Montrichard or Blois, you will be greeted by members of The Eur-Am Center staff. Be sure to call and tell us what time your train is arriving!

» From there, you will be driven to the Abbey in one of the company vehicles.

 

Are there public telephones in Pontelvoy?

There are two public phones available, one across from the bank and the other across from the town hall. They can be used to make calls anywhere in the world. These telephones function with debit calling cards in denominations of 12 Euros and also coins. Dial 0800990019 toll-free to contact an English-speaking operator.

When calling to the U.S. keep in mind the rates when calling:

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 am - 7:00 pm (highest rate)
Monday to Sunday: 7:00 pm - 8:00 am (best times to call)

 

Is there a post office in Pontlevoy?

There is one post office in Pontlevoy, La Poste. They provide a wide range of modern and efficient services. The Postal Service carries out two fundamental services: those that are purely postal in nature (such as those relating to different kinds of correspondence,) and those that are known as postal banking services, (dealing with money, such as postal and telegraphic money orders.) Stamps are sold at La Poste. Letters typically take 10-14 days to be sent between France and the U.S by airmail. Packages sent to or from France via regular mail (by boat) can take months.

 

What will be the characteristics of the lodging provided at the Abbey?

During your stay at the Abbey, you will be living in a dormitory-style room shared with a roommate. Some of the rooms have a private bathroom; all of the rooms have showers and sinks. The bedroom comes supplied with down comforters and pillows, towels, linens, two desks, and two armoires. Feel free to bring along small amenities like an alarm clock and hangers.

The room is located on a floor furnished with three laundry rooms (complete with washing machines and dryers) and a kitchen with a refrigerator, microwave, oven, pots, and pans.

We do not recommend that you bring electrical items because they risk overheating under the stress of the high voltages in foreign electrical systems. But if you do decide there's something you absolutely need, there are a few things you need to know. 220 (50 cycles) are used in France. In the U.S. we use 60 cycles. An adapter, which costs about $20 is required due to the cycle differences. Ask your local hardware store for more information. If you prefer, you can buy blow dryers and other appliances in France for prices comparable to those in States. This is recommended, especially if you will be living at the Abbey for 6 months or longer.

 

How much am I going to spend?

Due to the changes in exchange rates and differences in individual spending habits, we can only give you estimated figures. Based on past programs, most students seem to spend between $50 and $150 per week. This figure does not include extravagant traveling on the weekends or heavy shopping. Please keep in mind that some students spend less and others more. How frugal are you?

What are the costs of the program?

Go to the below link for and navigate to the individual program for information related to current program costs.

Click here (http://www.euramcenter.com/students/programs.html)

 

What do these costs cover?

Housing, tuition, daily lunch, an international cellular phone, museum and chateau visits for the program, events, living and learning in Paris for one week.

 

What universities are in the Consortium supporting The Abbey?

University of Southern Mississippi; Wayne State University; Oakland University; The Wisconsin in France Consortium (UW Stout, UW Superior, UW River Falls); The University of Southeastern Louisiana; University of Kentucky; Midwestern State University; The University of Greenwich (UK); The University of Orleans (France); The Mississippi University for Women and Madonna University.

 

Will my credits transfer?

Almost always. However, you need to discuss the program with the Undergraduate Advisor before going abroad to make sure that the courses will transfer. When returning, bring a course description and a transcript (both from the program) to your Transfer Credit Office and to the Undergraduate Advisor.

 

Where is Abbey?

The Abbey of Pontlevoy is located in the heart of the Loire Valley, a lush and green region in central France that is famous for its elegant châteaux and breathtaking landscapes. Pontlevoy is a small, rural town with a winter population of approximately 500 locals. In the summer, though, the town springs to life and nearly triples in size.

Despite its diminutive stature, Pontlevoy is quite charming. It is quiet and tranquil and can easily be traversed on its cobblestone sidewalks. Local businesses, though not by any means numerous, are accessible by foot and sufficient for supplying your day-to-day needs. You will find two small grocery stores, two beauty salons, two bars, a café, a bank, a post-office, a pharmacy, and a newspaper store.

Do be aware that the nightlife in Pontlevoy is subdued at best; however, most Saturday evenings, The Eur-Am Center staff arranges outings to a larger, nearby city.

When you are feeling 'trapped' by the Abbey, it is possible venture to larger towns and cities. Blois (25 km), Amboise (45 km), and Tours (60 km) are larger cities that offer a wide variety of activities and events. And even Montrichard (8 km) can offer refuge in a nice dinner and a few drinks. However, the public transportation in Pontlevoy and throughout the Loire Valley is limited, and as such The Eur-Am Center staff depends heavily on company cars for transportation.

 

Do I need travel insurance?

We recommend that you obtain travel insurance prior to departure. You may use coverage you already have coverage that someone else carries for you, or purchase insurance when you arrive in France at Vallée Assurances. If you purchase insurance in France, you may have to take out a year policy, pay for the year and cancel it when you are ready to go home and get a refund for the months you will not be insured. If you want to purchase international insurance coverage in the U.S. prior to your departure, we can offer recommendations.

 

What courses are being offered?

Go to the link for current course offerings and course descriptions.
Click here (http://www.euramcenter.com/students/programs.html)