But they're just in it for the money.
Maybe it seems that way, but this is the current requirement for those from outside the EU to drive in France:
Si vous venez en France pour un court séjour: (pour des vacances par exemple), vous pouvez conduire avec votre permis non européen: .
Le permis de conduire étranger doit remplir les 2 conditions suivantes :
What this states is that your license must be otherwise valid, and it must be accompanied by either an official translation, from a listed translator, or by an IDP (International Drivers Permit).
If you chose the former, your translation will be valid, as long as your license remains unchanged.
If you chose the latter, it must be obtained by an agency specified by the US State Department and issued pursuant to the 1949 Geneva Convention governing the acceptance of driver licenses in foreign countries. Signatures to this convention agree that IDPs are valid for one year only. There were later conventions, extending the period to 3 years, but the US State Department never signed any of these further agreements.
The State Department designates two agencies sanctioned to officially issue IDPs for those with US licenses: AAA and AATA.
Should you decide upon an official translation, a list of authorized translators is available here.
The above is only to help you make an informed decision, some have IDPs, others do not.