The first step in finding the right French language course should be to decide what type of level you'd like to prepare for. On average it costs about £25 to £40 per hour to hire a French tutor in the UK. However, this can vary considerably - where you study and how many lessons you will need will certainly influence these rates. Have a detailed discussion with a professional tutor before you commit. The French Language Schools Directory - Grand Répertoire - is a good place to start. This will give you information about the many courses in universities actually in France, but some will be sited in the UK too.
The Alliance Française
The Alliance Française has schools located in thirteen UK cities including Bristol, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, Manchester, Newcastle, York, and more. As well as day study, there are night courses for all levels (beginner, intermediary, and advanced) but prices vary depending on location and whether you are happy to be taught online.
Beginners generally have one-to-one courses of around ten hours for £320 but this reduces by £40-50 if you train via Skype. Check their website for variations between towns as a beginner’s ten-week course in Manchester is £209 and an intermediate course, for those more skilled, can be found in Manchester at £129 for up to three hours a day over five weeks. If you wish to complete a level B2 (480 hours of classes) this amounts to 24 weeks at a cost of over £400. However, the courses are very diverse and cater to someone who may want to learn the language for business or for someone who is interested simply in improving their grammar and accent.
This was formed in 1910 with locations all around the UK and while the general subscription price for classes at the Institut Français start at £80, it will vary depending on how long you’d like to study, plus your choice of different courses: group courses, private tuition, or online. Two, 30- hour-long courses on the same day, can cost £575.
French is quite a complex learning experience so some tutors will mimic language to teach you conversational and language skills, while others will teach at a higher level, so you acquire the same proficiency as a French person. There are other levels: general French, professional French, preparation for exams, and more.
Having decided which level, you want to undertake, you'll need to choose your schedule: weekly courses, individual courses, group courses, or joining an intensive programme. There are over 9,400 tutors available throughout the UK for private and group courses, all with a wide range of skill sets and qualifications. Depending on where you live, prices range from £16 to £26 per hour.
UK universities teaching French studies include Cambridge University, Durham University, King's College London, University of Oxford, University of Surrey, University of St. Andrews and the University of Strathclyde. Universities with foreign language studies usually have language centres that cater to people from outside the university and are often linked to other languages such as Spanish or Portuguese. Durham's Centre for Foreign Languages offers a nine-day course, starting from £250, studying for four hours a day.
Of course, if you want to study in France and are on a budget, it's worth looking into language and culture institutes, as well as official online language channels or podcasts.