How To Learn The Language In France

If you are intending to move to France to live and work, and are not currently a French speaker, how easy will you find it to communicate in the country? How widespread is the use of English throughout France? Which languages will you need in the workplace? We will answer some of your questions below.The … Read more

How Might The Changes In French Driving Laws Affect You?

For France, 2019 so far has been nothing but turbulent. Following President Macron’s announcement of plans to increase the costs of petrol and diesel at the end of last year, mass protests ensued that snowballed into violent riots. Of course, the Yellow Vest protests were not solely based on the fuel hikes, but also the … Read more

How To Insure Your Pet In France

As expats, we know that each move to a new country means mountains of research and paperwork. You’ll have to open new bank accounts, fill in forms, and take out new insurance policies. If you’re shopping for insurance abroad, you need to have an idea of which providers to get quotes from, as well as … Read more

What Documentation Will You Need To Stay In France Following Brexit?

Brexit: it’s been the topic on everyone’s minds ever since Article 50 was triggered by Theresa May on March 29th, 2017. As the UK’s date to leave the European Union (EU) draws closer, speculation over what will happen with regards to trade, healthcare and visa agreements rages on.While nothing has yet been confirmed, countries are … Read more

An Expat Guide to Car Insurance In France

Moving abroad can be confusing at the best of times. There’s so much to learn with regards to properties, locations and culture – and that’s before you add in the paperwork!However, when it comes to getting your documentation in place, insurance is one of those elements you need before something happens to save yourself from … Read more

Ten Signs You’ve Been Living In Paris For Too Long

Few cities have the romantic allure of the City of Lights. The French capital has made names, broken hearts and inspired geniuses. Ernest Hemingway, Pablo Picasso and George Orwell all found their artistic feet in Paris, the city they adopted as home.Perhaps this is why more than 20 percent of the city’s population were born … Read more

A Vegetarian Guide To Paris

Paris has changed. The city looks much the same as it has for the past 100 years, but the French capital is experiencing somewhat of a renaissance when it comes to the humble vegetable. What once was a destination recognised for being one of the most difficult places in the world to be vegetarian or … Read more

The Unwritten Rules Of Living In Paris

Ah Paris, the city of sophistication. The everlasting location of romance, elegance and good taste. The muse of great artists and writers, the resting place of musicians and philosophers. The city of lights might have a bright reputation, but the drab reality of daily life can come as a disappointment to new arrivals. Finding out … Read more

Challenges Expats Face In France And How To Address Them

There are probably very few people who have taken the leap to move to a new country that could tell you it was all smooth sailing from start to finish. No matter how well prepared you are, you are bound to face a few challenges or obstacles at some point during your life as an … Read more

Top Tips For Expats Moving To France

As with all overseas assignments, research before moving to France is key and a short trip to learn more about a potential destination will be well advised. In addition, it is also good advice that anybody thinking of moving to France on a long-term basis should make some effort to learn the language; French is … Read more

An Expat Guide To The Regions Of France

Thinking of moving to France? You’ll join the many expats that have settled there. Whether it’s the scenic coast line, gorgeous countryside, the lifestyle or the delicious French cuisine that has prompted you take the plunge, you’ll be glad you’ve made that brave decision to make your dreams become reality. Below is a simple guide … Read more

The Ultimate To-Do List For Expats In The South Of France

The South of France is the home of some of the most scenic places in the world. Besides the popular cities such as Cannes and Nice, there are also other lesser known, but equally picturesque areas in the region. The best time to visit the South of France is during the summer or between May … Read more

A Gluten-Free Guide To Paris

Paris is synonymous with croissants, croques monsieur, palmiers and pains au chocolat. This isn’t such good news for those with gluten intolerance or celiac disease. However, upon doing a little bit of research, it is possible to find a number of gluten-free treats in this beautiful city. In fact, apart from the baguette that accompanies … Read more

France – Recommended Social Media Accounts

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at France and some of the social media accounts you should be following if you’re thinking of moving there.Learn French TogetherFacebook PageA Facebook page that … Read more

How to Survive France As A Vegan

France: land of croissants, cheese and coq au vin… But can you find beef-less bourguignon or vegan bouillabaisse in France these days? France hardly has a reputation as being a vegan-friendly country. After all, this is the country whose government forces schools to include meat and fish in canteen meals most of the time, effectively … Read more

Beyond The Burkini Ban: Muslimah Fashion And French Law

Paris is often referred to as the Fashion Capital of the World. This is one of the reasons why people from all around the world dream of living in France. Moreover, the French are known to be extremely open-minded when it comes to dress codes, especially the women. This is evident in the fact that … Read more

Ten Historic Villages You Must Visit While Living In France

France is a beloved nation for many different reasons. French cuisine is popular the world over. From delectable sauces to scrumptious pastries, the country serves up some of the best fare, in homes and in its many restaurants and cafés. Art is cherished in France, and one of the most popular art movements in the … Read more

Moving To Paris? Here’s How To Dress For Work And Leisure

Many countries claim to be the fashion capital of the world. London boasts its Cool Britannia look, Milan is devoted to trend setting high fashion, and New York turns city streets into catwalks of effortless style. But there is another city to consider; one that is synonymous with chic, classy fashions and a refined, stylish … Read more

Are You Ready For Life In Rural France?

Romantic wannabe expats who have read A Year in Provence or watched Chocolat one too many times may be swept away with the daydream notion of moving to rural France. The French countryside is a gorgeous place to be; from the hedgerows of the Normandy farmland to the rugged Alsace and the gently rolling hills … Read more

France – Recommended Blogs

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at France and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there.Renovation of a Derelict House in Brittany France The dream of every … Read more

An Expat Guide To The Arrondissements Of Paris

In every major city in the world it’s possible to find at least one confused-looking visitor, staring with furrowed brow into a crumpled map. It’s not always easy to find your way around a strange town, especially if all the landmarks are spread out all over it. Paris on the other hand has an elegant … Read more

Interview With Rosemary Border Rabson

Rosemary, tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to be an expat. Everyone calls me Rosy. I am Rosemary Margaret and narrowly escaped being christened Margaret Rose after the Little Princess. I am 72 and have been married to John Rabson for 43 years. I have worked as an Open Competition civil … Read more

Ten French Foods You Probably Haven’t Heard Of

French cuisine has a reputation across the world for being influential on modern Western cuisine, for being some sort of pinnacle of food as art, and sometimes for being plain weird. Even among people who don’t know or care too much about food, the mention of French cuisine will evoke certain ideas and dishes. Whether … Read more

20 Surprising Facts About France

For centuries, France has been a leading political power and a global centre of culture that has made major contributions to the fields of science, philosophy and the arts. Even today, it remains one of the most powerful countries in the world, with a major influence on global affairs, arts, and culture. Because of its … Read more

Living French: One Girl’s Struggle

First, let me paint you a picture… of a very capable, very confident young english woman living in France, who has conquered parking in very tiny spaces, mastered most of the accepted french hand gestures, perfected her ‘moelleux chocolat’, and has an A-Level in french don’t you know! So finding the pneumologist’s office in a … Read more

5 Things No One Tells You About Living In Paris

Living in Paris is like a dream come true for many expats. Every year, thousands of foreigners from Europe and America move to the “city of love” to live out their fantasy. The weather, scenic beauty and rich culture are some of the main factors that attract people to this place. However, Paris isn’t just … Read more

Five Things To Avoid Doing When You Move To France

In spite of its reputation as a place where people can be cold and unwelcoming, France is actually a wonderful place to live. The food, the wine, and the French countryside are all fantastic, and the French people are great if you get to know them and show a little patience and initiative yourself. They’re … Read more

Fed Up Of Life In France As An Expat? Try These Suggestions!

Expats sometimes experience a feeling of being fed up with the expat life, and many may yearn to return home. Although not all expats go through this, it can crop up suddenly, especially among those who have been living abroad for some time. If you’re living in France and getting that feeling of expat fatigue, … Read more

5 Experiences You Must Try As An Expat In Paris

Paris is one of the most elegant and sophisticated cities in the world. The River Seine, which flows through the heart of the city, and the thirty-two bridges across it; the architecturally brilliant city squares; and the many grand monuments are all testament to a rich cultural heritage. But apart from the aesthetic appeal, Paris … Read more

Etiquette Faux Pas In France: How Not To Act

France is a land of great cultural diversity. The heart of the country, the city of Paris, is a perfect reflection of this with its mix of people and ideas. But like every other country in the world, there are some inherent cultural customs that are practised by the locals. These social practices date back … Read more

Shopping For The First Time In France? Here’s What You Need To Know

France is among the top shopping destinations in the world. There are shops and stores to suit every shopper’s needs, and you can find everything here, from wines and cheese to high-end fashion. France also has its own traditional handicrafts, which are still produced in many villages. Products like handmade pottery and glass make great … Read more

Expat Family Friendly Things To Do In Paris

We all know of Paris as the city of love and romance, and many of us are also well aware of its more raunchy side, with cabaret shows, an erotic museum, and a sex supermarket! But there’s a lot more to Paris than that. Paris truly is a city with something for everyone, and whether … Read more

10 Websites Expats Need To Visit Before Moving To Paris

France is popular with expats due to its favorable climate, rich food and culture and relaxed lifestyle. The capital city of Paris is an exciting blend of all these things and more. It is home to people of different nationalities, making it a truly international city. There’s a lot to do in Paris, from visiting … Read more

Moving To Paris? Read Our Expat Guide To Travelling On Public Transport

Paris is known to have one of the most efficient public transport systems in the world. However public transport services in Paris can become overcrowded since they are so popular with the people. The city also draws a steady throng of tourists, leading to further overcrowding in trains and buses. The good news is that … Read more

Driving In Paris – A Few Survival Tips For Expats

Driving in Paris can be a nerve-wracking experience for many. The Étoile, for example, is the intersection of twelve major Parisian roads, and maneuvering a vehicle through this junction alone has given many foreigners the jitters. Most holiday-goers are advised to avoid driving in Paris at all costs because of the numerous hassles one is … Read more

5 Good Reasons You Should Move To France (And 1 Reason You Shouldn’t!)

France, with its rich culture, beautiful landscapes, fine wine and scrumptious cuisine, is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world. It probably doesn’t take much to make you want to pack your bags and head to the picturesque French countryside for a weeklong holiday. But moving to a foreign country is something … Read more

France – Five Recommended Expat Blogs

At Expat Focus, we like to take a look around the internet and see who’s sharing interesting ideas and useful tips for expatriate life all around the world. In our travels, we come across lots of blogs we’d like to recommend, and we’ll be featuring some of them over the coming months. Today we’re focusing … Read more

An English Christmas – French Style

I must have blinked, just as I thought Autumn had arrived it was suddenly winter. Its now time to start planning my Christmas, well planning started in March when our turkeys arrived becoming the most pampered live stock here at Half Acre, with a diet of bread, corn and fresh veg. Now they’re ready to … Read more

Bored of Life in France? Visit a Vineyard!

As the largest wine producer in the world, France manufactures up to eight millilon bottles per year. The rules surrounding winemaking are strict, with many falling under a protected destination of origin – they can only be produced in the specific area in which they originated. The most well-known of these is probably champagne, which … Read more

Brittany: A Short History for Expats

Brittany is quickly becoming one of the most popular areas for expats. Close to the coast and not too far from the English Channel, it’s a convenient residence for UK expatriates in particular, who may want to hop across the Celtic Sea from time to time to visit friends and family. A thriving expat population … Read more

The Most Idyllic Places to Relocate in France

As mentioned elsewhere on this site, France is home to some of the most luxurious property on earth, a fact that would still hold true even if the commercial center of Paris were excluded from the picture (some might say especially if Paris were excluded from the picture.) Destinations like the Côte d’Azur – more … Read more

Best Neighborhoods in Paris for Expat Professionals

Though most readers will know that world-class prestige does not come cheap, it is still worth mentioning the fact that residency in Paris can be at the pinnacle of the world ‘cost of living’ index. France, as a whole, remains the country with the world’s most expensive residential property (La Leopolda Villa on the French … Read more

The British Who Move To France

The huge surge of British families pulling up roots and moving lock stock and barrel to France, has largely petered out. During the 1980s thousands of families re-located to France, mostly because property was so cheap – sometimes incredibly cheap – and the bargains seemed too good to miss. By the 1990s numbers started to … Read more

What You Need to Know Before Moving to Paris

by Kathryn Valdal Fourie Shortly after moving to Paris, the fascination with the city of lights and the capital of romance can easily wear off. Your twinkling image of Paris can easily become the city of smoke filled bars, bad customer service and pavements covered with doggie doo. But if you move to Paris equipped … Read more