France still draws British expats in spite of Brexit

Posted on 17 Sep at 6 PM in France
Story link: France still draws British expats in spite of Brexit
France still draws British expats in spite of Brexit

France still draws British expats in spite of Brexit

Although less Brits are now moving to France, with many waiting to see how Brexit pans out, our nearest neighbour is still a popular destination, especially for retirees.

Although a proportion of Britons who head for a hopefully permanent stay in France find it too much of a challenge and eventually repatriate, those who do stay wouldn’t change it for the world. As with other life-changing decisions, research is the answer to any major move, together with the realisation it’s not always sunshine and pool parties. Checking online at expat advisory sites as well as on forums is the best way to get your dreams a reality check and ensure your final decision is made for all the right reasons.

Leaving aside the thorny problem of Brexit, for Brits dreaming of a French retirement the first reality is that winter happens, however far south you’re relocating. If you can get over this, learning French is the next hurdle as the version you learned in school isn’t going to get you far in the real world. Obviously, it you’re thinking of working rather than retiring, it’s even more important to gain proficiency in this attractive tongue. Evening classes will help, but perhaps not so much at the doctor’s or immigration office, so mastering this skill is an essential.

Even more important is mastering the French culture and acknowledging the French are very different from their English cousins. It’s a case of values, prioritising and how things are done, whether expats like it or not. Trying to change this to your preferred method is a waste of time and doesn’t win friends or influence the French. If you intend to blend in and make local friends rather than sticking to the local expat group, you should realise it’ll take some time to be accepted into the French community, but it can be done. As regards officialdom, bureaucratic red tape and seemingly crazy laws can get in the way of enjoying life, but only if you let them.

Related Stories:

Latest News: