Essentially Nantes

Today I was struck with an idea. There are so many small tools that I’ve discovered during my time in France that I wouldn’t have heard of had a friend or family member not recommended them. So, I am here to be that friend to the future generation of students, specifically those heading to Nantes. This one goes out to you!

Essential Apps

Too Good To Go:

Save money on your daily pastry breakfast (and snack, and sometimes even dinner) by finding food with Too Good To Go. This app focuses on reducing food waste by allowing restaurants to pack “goodie bags” of unsold food to sell at a reduced price at the end of their day. Of course, the pastries aren’t straight out of the oven, but they are still good to eat and just as tasty. You can even find pickups from grocery stores and restaurants if you’re looking for a bigger meal!

My review:

Typically my friends and I use this app to get pastries. It is a great way to try new things, since the bags are always a surprise, for much cheaper than buying straight from the boulangerie.

Nantes Dans Ma Poche:

This app gives you all, and I mean ALL, the information about anything you could ever need to find in Nantes. Gardens and parks, cultural events, sports and leisure activities, public service buildings, buses, and more can all be found with the tap of an icon.

My review:

I use this app mostly for the tram schedules, since you can put in your stop and the direction you are going and it gives a clear timetable of all the upcoming trams. I find it much more user-friendly than the TAN tram app and easier to personalize.


Despite what it may seem, studying abroad can be even less expensive than on-campus study. For this to be possible, budgeting is essential! This app allows you to create a daily, weekly, or monthly budget to track your spending in different categories.

My review:

I got this app in a crisis. I realized I dreaded looking at my bank account, but even more I dreaded not having anything left to look at. So far, it has been very helpful in holding me accountable and giving me a concrete figure to limit myself to each week. I am able to save for the things I really want to do while abroad, like traveling, instead of buying my twelfth cup of coffee in a week.

Other Suggestions

Transportation – SNCF:

SNCF is the rail system throughout France. It is great for seeing the country, or even getting to cities just outside of France. I highly recommend purchasing a Carte Jeune, the student discount card. Though the initial purchase seems expensive it saves money in the longterm, especially if you plan on traveling within France.

My last piece of advice? Talk to someone who has been abroad! It is always helpful to hear from someone who has already been through the experience, and they probably love to talk about it.

Enjoy Nantes!

Published by Isabella

Class of 2022 Computer Science and French Double Major IES Nantes, France

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