We are Americans with American passports. My fiance would like to study abroad in France in fall of 2010 (roughly August 23 2010-Dec 22 2010). We are getting married in June 2010 and are planning to travel in Europe for our honeymoon (June 22 2010-August 23 2010 and travel in Croatia, Italy, Spain, Portugal) for two months prior to the study abroad program. My fiance will of course apply for a student VISA as he will be studying, but as for me, I have no idea how to go about this. I guess I will be a tourist for 4 months in France, possibly taking a short language course, a cooking class, perhaps a volunteer program, etc. But since we won't be in France initially how does this process happen? Is it possible to apply for a VISA for travel 2 months later? Also, my fiance does have relatives who live in France.
Please respond with your suggestions!
Your fiance will need to apply for a French student visa (I guess this process will have to be initiated by the university; it's like that in the Netherlands at least), which will be valid for the exact period of his studies in France. He can apply for a so-called 'C+D' visa, which gives him the opportunity to travel the Schengen area for at most 90 days out of a 180 during the period in which his student visa is valid.
You could come to Europe on a regular tourist visa (for which you don't need to apply in advance), meaning that you can travel the Schengen area for 90 days in a 180 day period. Afaics, you fiance will not be able to do the same, since it's generally not allowed to have a C-type (short stay) and D-type (long stay) visa consecutively.
Afaics, the fact that you're married or that he is of French descent doesn't change anything about your situation.
The most appropriate place to check re regulations is really through the embassy. Some countries allow students to be joined in the country by their spouses, some don't. I don't know if France does. If it does, well and good but if it doesn't and you're looking at applying for short courses etc, then you'll most likely need to go through similar, if not the same, application process as your fiance. Best to start on this ahead of time as it can take a while to clear French bureaucracy.