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Grape Picking in France

by Amanda

I can thoroughly recommend my experience picking grapes in France. This was something I did one year in my late teens on a break from university. I wanted to travel through France to visit a friend of mine whose parents had a summer home in the Dordogne.

When I arrived I really fell in love with the place and decided to stay for the summer months. However in order to be able to afford to do this I had to find a job. Doing this with only a slight grasp of the French language was always going to be difficult but then someone suggested grape picking.

It was September and the harvest was just about to begin. The work is only 'minimum wage' and it's true that it is hard work - particularly on your back. But you meet a good group of people and it's nice to be outdoors all day.

We had a really lovely mix of people on our team of grape pickers. There were French locals looking to supplement their incomes, there were overseas students like myself from a wide range of countries like the United States, United Kingdom and many other European cities. We all got along really well and as well as getting paid at the end of each week, were also given free meals each lunchtime. In France this isn’t just a sandwich and a Coke – it’s a full four course meal with starter, main course, cheese and dessert. Plus you always get a glass of red (from the vineyard of course!) and a fresh cup of coffee to round things off.

Comments for Grape Picking in France

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Jun 25, 2008
Great fringe benefits
by: Francine Delorme

Sounds like a tasty job - with great benefits (like drinking some of that French wine). And if you get too tired there's nothing like a good glass of red to perk you up, right???

Nov 21, 2008
Where are you from?
by: Scribetrotter

Working picking grapes in France is possible wherever you're from. If you're an EU citizen, try one of these groups for jobs or more information:

Appellation Controlee

Overseas Job Centre

WWOOF France

However, hundreds of citizens of the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, to name just a few non-EU countries, find jobs in Burgundy, Bordeaux or Alsace each year by simply showing up. Vineyard owners often prefer to pay under the table - it costs them less.

If you speak any French at all you'll have a better chance of finding something - just travel to your region of choice and ask around the bars and cafes. Remember though - you'll be competing with plenty of illegal immigrants from other parts of the world.

Good luck!

Jul 22, 2009
grape picking in FRANCE
by: Anonymous

I picked grapes in the villages of France 35 years ago and it was one of the best experiences of my life. Although the work is hard you get an experience of the culture and what France and the vineyards are all about. I learned a lot about what the people of the villages of France are like. They are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. I also got to experience some of the best French country cooking.

May 04, 2010
grape picking
by: jacky

I read in a caravan magazine that some places let you take your caravan to their site to work and wondered if anyone knew of somewhere like this. They were a group of caravaners that now met regularly... Help please! Thank you...

May 05, 2010
Caravans
by: Leyla

Hi Jacky, there are some places that do have caravan facilities, mostly in Australia.

You could try Pickingjobs, which lists this farm north of Melbourne where you can bring your own caravan. There's also Plunkett Orchards. There are many more, as staying in caravans is an option many farms support.

Your best bet is to choose the farm you'd like to work on, and write to them asking if you can bring your caravan. I suspect you'll get quite a few positive answers.

Jan 26, 2013
Vendange
by: Neil Od

We went to a lovely family South of Lyon, it was a big farm, we were picking for 3 weeks and got paid at the end. It was quite good money at the time. You really dont need any money while you are there. We were fed 3 meals a day, huge meals, lots of wine. The food was amazing and as i say plentiful. You don't go hungry. The accommodation was basic but sufficient. It was an amazing mix of people. Everyone got on really well. I will try and find out the details for the family we went to, I'm sure they will still be in the wine business....all the best.

Jun 18, 2014
You can park your caravan at our place for the summer in New York
by: Anonymous

We have a big country house that can always use some good housekeepers, yard keepers, and/or handy people for repairs and maintenance and special projects.

Free big yard to tent or park your recreation vehicle.

Anytime the weather is warm enough - roughly May through late September or October.

Also have an inside room as a possibility.

Email details at preservationtrust at gmail if interested.

Sep 05, 2014
Fruit picking job
by: Anonymous

Hello all,

i have found this website and a few of you have done any fruit picking in France.
However my boyfriend and I are looking for any kind of fruit picking job in October for a month in France.

I would be very much appreciate if someone of you have any contact details..

Thanks,
Susann

PS: we are good trained fruit picker in any kind of fruit. We have done plenty of picking jobs in Australia.

Apr 03, 2015
On the lookout for harvesting job
by: Anonymous

Hello,

Could you tell me how you found the job? Is it simply about going over to france and enquiring once your there or is there a specific website you can find jobs on?

Thanks x

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