Fantastique France!

If you've discovered a wonderful eaterie in the foothills of the Himalayas or want to know the hip place to eat during your forthcoming trip to Cape Town, here's the place to post!

 
 
 

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CaroW

Fantastique France!

Hi all - I'm back but with a new Nick - some may remember me as Carolokay from years ago. I've just yesterday returned from a trip to France and absolutely loved it - would love to live there someday. Are there many English speaking peeps who live in France on this site and if so would you be able to give me some hints/tips as to what to expect if I do decide to go back to that magical country.

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Biggles !

Fantastique France !


Hi, pleased to hear you had a wonderful time in my adopted country. I've been here 3 years next August and we both love it. There are some draw backs but that tends to be the case wherever. There are a fair few number of we British who have made the move and are here on DoL.

There are many other fora which deal specifically with moving to/and living in France where there is a wealth of information to hand.

I'll pose 3 questions for you :0)

Why do you want to live here?
Where do you want to live here?
Can you afford to live here?

The last question is probably the most important as so many British are leaving at a rate of knots because they don't have any income or, their pensions have been radically reduced because of the pound/euro situation and their lifestyle. Work can be difficult to find and apparently there are as many French living in Britain as there are British living in France.

The health system is brilliant here as my OH and myself have both recently discovered. But, it can cost a lot; all depends on what the problem is and what sort of top up health insurance you have.

However, please don't let me put you off. I believe the affordability question depends on how you want to live. We grow much of our own vegetables and buy flour very cheaply direct from the mill and now we are becoming integrated we are given many wonderful home produced foodstuffs and we provide British style foodstuffs as and when. We have great fun discovering the differences between us.



Best wishes, Biggs. Living in the middle of nowhere and loving it :0)

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John S.

Magical France???

If France is so magical why can't it just disappear???

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Expat Badger

fab france

noooo - it might take all the food and wine with it!!

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John S.

French food and wine.

Phoo!! to French food and wine Expat, French food is Cr-p IMO, and their wine is no better than the wines of Australia, South Africa, Canada, California, Italy, Chile, Argentina and Germany, even the Chinese make some decent wines.

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Expat Badger

Fantastique France!

french food is crap? Which bit did you go to? Calais?

wine - some are good and some aren't...like everywhere else.

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French J

France

I came here 14 years ago with a six month old baby as my husbands job was moved here. Since then have moved a bit but certainly am very happy to stay here. But life is not all about lovely meals on the terrace in the sun. It is cold this morning (- 2) and the boiler did not cut in so hot water was tepid for husbands shower and kids dragged their feet only just getting our in time for school. Sound familiar, yes normal real life. But there are lots of positive points, and as for food it is the attitude to food that is different. Far more french think that what you eat and what you talk about whilst eating is very important. I remember my neighbours daughter going on a trip to a uk familly and that the familly did not all eat together, on her return she asked me when the english families argued. No she didn't mean argue but discuss everyone's ideas and sort out day to day issues such as 'Dad I just must have the red skirt in the shop, or 'who can take me to football on saturday.

Anyway, back to the point, France is lovely but remember it is real life. Better get off to work or boss will shout!

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nelles

France

We moved here 13 years ago (today!!). We have many French friends here in this area, that we had known years before we moved. We knew the area quite well, so much of our “moving in” problems were easily overcome.

I agree with Biggs’ three questions. For us the most important was the second “Where”. Having had both elderly and younger relatives made the choice of not being too far from a main airport a priority in case we had to fly to the UK quickly (which we did many times). So check out the areas to fit your criteria.

The ability to speak French fairly well is important if you want to live in rural areas. You soon get to know the words for everyday problems in and around the house. The health system is brilliant as Biggs says as are the hospitals as we both found out in our first year here. Dentists and opticians are probably the same as the UK but I am not sure after so long here.

The pound/euro situation has made a great difference but we find we have adjusted to it.

So don’t be put off if you really fancy living in France.

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Biggles !

Bon Anniversaire Nelles


Thirteen years, lovely.

I'll only add that as far as opticians go it is necessary to visit an opthalmo before going to the optician and both optical and dental work can be more expensive than in the UK. Having said that I chipped a veneer from a front tooth and had it repaired very well at very little cost. A very pleasant surprise. My new glasses were very expensive but they are 'Oh so stylish' and I needn't have paid anywhere near the amount. Buy one get one free is still a novel concept, but things are changing.

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French J

France and glasses

Don't forget that although you need to go the opthalmologue for a prescription you can use that prescription for 3 years without seeing the opthalmo again (1 year for children). And opticiens will check your eyes but you have to ask them it is not a service they offer unless pushed.

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Dottie May

Fantastique France!

At my age I've no intention of emigrating anywhere but I've so enjoyed reading all your comments about living in France. Some years ago I bought the CD Book "A Year in Province" and thoroughly enjoyed it but must admit I had to listen to it several times because I kept dropping off to sleep in the middle of it because the voice was so soothing. Must dig out the CD again and see if I can listen to it all the way through in one go!

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Expat Badger

Fantastique France!

i read the book recently Dottie - was lovely!

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Anne

Disappointing Food

We've just returned from a home exchange in Normandy. Out of 3 meals every one was served with frozen chips - the food was very disappointing - one restaurant was a recommendation and typically 'French' but failed to impress except for the puds.

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Dolores

Fantastique France!

Very interesting thread....

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Sue G

Fantastique France ?????


Hi,

Before you make a move you really should make up two lists of why you want to move to france, and why you want to leave the UK.

Comming to France for a holiday and actually living here is completely different.

The French love the Brits comming over and spending their money, they soon change their attitude once you move over here. No difference to Brits moaning about others moving to the UK and taking jobs and getting benifits etc.

In your profile you say you are an accountant. Do you wish to continue this work in France? Can you speak fluent french?
Jobs are very rare in France, unemployment is high, the French will employ a French person over an English person, with no problem.

If you are under retirment age, then you cannot have a carte vital not unless you put into the system,(get a job, or start your own business) you Have to have private health insurance.
If not can you support yourself money wise, (exchange rate is crap)

The price of food is not cheaper than the UK,
Wages are alot lower than the UK, You have high taxes.

Do you have children?, many Brits find their children really struggle in schools for the first few years, also some have a struggle in being accepted by the other kids.

What will you do with all your dogs & cats, will you bring them over, if yes then you have to think, what shall i do with them if i need to return to the UK, petpassorts are expensive to keep up, boarding is really expensive.

One important thing you have to do if you were to move over is, LIVE LIKE THE FRENCH.
For the first three months i lived here i spent the whole time saying " but in England they don't do it like that, or it is much easier in the UK" then one day my husband who is French said to me , "well you are not in the UK, you are in France so if you can't accept the way the French do things we should move back"

Sorry to sound so negative, but many Brits move here, come for their hols and think, "it is .MAGICAL"
Then move back within a few years, if they can afford to, others are stuck here as they can't sell and can't afford to move back.

There is a web site www.angloinfo.com

that has lots of info.

 
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