What To Do When Moving To France

This article will provide advice on what to do when moving to France.

Choose a region

France is a rich and varied country with some different towns and region. Each part of the country differs from the others. Some regions contain large cities, while others contain vast amounts of the countryside. Some are near to the mountains, while others are close to the sea.

Deciding on which part of France fits your needs is the first step. Examine the job market in the area, the proximity to leisure amenities and, if you are relocating with your family, make sure to research the nearby schools to see if they fit your needs more info here http://www.centralmoves.co.uk/2013/11/26/removals-to-france-moving-to-france-removals-london-to-france/.

Legal issues

Before relocating to France, it’s important to make sure your legal standings are in order.

First of all, make sure that your passport is not set to expire within the next six months. If it is, contact your local passport office to arrange a renewal.

Secondly, collect any and all legal documents about your identity. Birth certificates, marriage certificates, employment records, medical records, dental records, academic records and any wills or testaments are essential items that will need to be packed for the move.

Before moving, it’s important to contact the tax office and advise them of your relocation, even if you will be maintaining a UK income and a UK bank account. Once in France, a French bank account can be opened, allowing for utilities and other bills to be set up.

Health care

France has a nationalized health service that provides treatment to all its citizens. As an expat, a little work will need to be done to be transferred over to the French NHS.

The first step is to advise your local doctor that you will be relocating abroad. Ask for any and all medical records as they will need to be presented to the doctors in France.

Upon arriving in France, a green health card, or ‘carte vitale’ as it is known in French, will need to be applied for at the local ‘Caisse assurance Maladie.’

In the mean time, while the carte vitale application is being processed, temporary health care is available through the European ‘E’ card system. Your local doctor will be able to provide advice about applying for the ‘E’ card.

Removals & Storage

After buying a house and arranging any legal requirements, the next step is to organize for any furniture and belongings to be moved to your new home in France.

Specialist removal companies can help to make this process easy. They will visit your home, pack up your belongings and drive them to your new home in France. While this option is relatively pain-free, it can be quite expensive.

The DIY option is a cheaper alternative to hiring professional movers. Simply load up the car and rent a van to transport your furniture and belongings and drive them to your new French house yourself.

If you need to leave any belongings behind, storage can be rented to house them. Contact local storage companies to find out how much they cost and then arrange for your belongings to be dropped off there.

Registering with the local Mairie

Upon arriving in France, it’s important to register your address and your family details with the local Mairie. The Mairie acts as the bureaucratic hub for a community, and they can help with many of the elements of French bureaucracy. Failure to register with the local Mairie within three months of arriving can carry stiff financial penalties.

Driving in France

Under European law, a British driving license will allow you to drive a car on the roads in France. Many British insurance companies will insure a car to be driven on the French roads but, if you are planning to settle permanently in France, it may be more cost effective in the long run to re-register your car in France. The local Mairie will be able to help you complete this task.


Moving to a foreign country can help to spark an exciting new chapter in a one’s life. While it may take some work to set up the move initially, with careful planning and preparation, the relocation process will go smoothly without any troubles.

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