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Boudicca's Achievements


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  1. [quote user="Anton Redman II"]Irish friend claims he used to do the 180 degree turn and back through toll booths.[:)][/quote] LOL love it!
  2. I was wondering about that - whether it was also 70/30 for hospital too. I wonder if anyone reading this thread could direct me towards links for top up insurances worth investigating? Thanks!
  3. Oh wow my mum's only a young 77! I'm sure I'm worrying for nothing and knowing her after 6 months she'll have a better social life than us! ;o)
  4. I know when I left France 13 years ago they had already been saying for many years that the healthcare can’t be sustained at this rate. I think it’s probably going down as is the NHS but I think that France started higher up and will remain higher up than the UK. I read recently, can’t think where to quote, that it had come out top – I think it was of Europe, but not sure. I’ve always been well served by the NHS. We are lucky to live in a “good” post-code from that point of view. However when I had my root filling in France last summer it was like something state of the art compared to here (just a small village dentist in the Alps). My NHS dentist had to finish it off with a crown here (couldn’t manage to get that done as an emergency) and he marvelled at the work. My mum had the same experience (different dentist) 20 years ago. Not only that but what I paid up front (and partly claimed back) was less than I would have had to pay on the NHS here. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying its perfect – mistakes happen everywhere and we didn’t have a good experience when we had to take our daughter to A&E on a Saturday night in Lille a few years ago. I’m not slating the NHS either but I certainly don’t think we’ll be any worse off. I know my French in-laws always complain about the cost of healthcare but are amazed when we tell them we pay £7.50 (or there abouts) for EACH item on a prescription. I will look into top ups for her though in particular for dental work which she does require from time to time. Then again her NHS dentist says he can’t do a lot of what she needs and sends her to a private specialist who then charges her £300+ for a “check up” to tell her the work will cost £5,000… I think it will be swings and roundabouts…
  5. I know there are a lot of working age ex-pats in the area due to Blagnac but I was wondering whether there are many retired ex-pats in the area? I’m asking because there is a strong chance I’ll be returning to the region with my French husband after 13 years in the UK. However this time we’ll be bringing my mother with us as she lives with us now and has nobody else. This isn’t a problem at all as we all get on really well, but unlike us she isn’t bilingual. I do worry a bit because she is VERY active and sociable for her age. She’ll certainly have a go with French and is up for the adventure but I’m hoping she’ll make some ex-pat friends too so that she can have a really good natter now and again. Lisa
  6. Just noticed some very cheap flights between Toulouse / Manchester in October (£0.04 + taxes) if anyone is interested.
  7. LOL I love the breathalysed tale! We drove around for quite a while in our LHD in the UK but it definitely was easier when we got a RHD - overtaking (in particular tractors wagons and caravans) but also car park ticket machines! I'm planning on swapping our RHD for a similar LHD in the UK before we come over. You can pick them up relatively cheap compared to the same second hand RHD. Quite a few ex-pats returning from Spain... Mind you, even after 13 years I have been known to grab the door handle not the hand brake! ;o) It was more difficult when we had one of each - thank goodness the pedals are the same way round is all I can say!!!
  8. Just curious, but why would you want to buy a right hand drive to import to France? I could understand bringing over a RHD if you'd had it a while and it was in excellent condition for it's age. We brought our old LHD over to the UK but it was so much easier to drive and insure when we swapped it for a RHD. Now that we are planning on moving back I'll be looking at the best way to swap to a LHD as soon as possible - despite loving the car we have (Honda CR-V). Have I missed the point?
  9. When you talk about "top up insurance" I presume that is like the "mutuelle" we had via my husbands employer when we lived in France. I wonder whether the average French OAP has this or whether they are just content with the 70%? To be honest I'm not sure what she has in the UK - whether she pays prescription charges and the dentist as we do. I’ve a feeling she does because she does have a sort of mini top up insurance where she can claim back a bit of what she pays - dentist, glasses etc... So it doesn't sound like she'll be any worse off - and I do know the health care and dentists are excellent in France. I was ever so lucky that I needed a root filling whilst on holiday last year. I didn't time it that way on purpose but I had been putting it off in the UK!
  10. PS. Not sure it works the same way in France. A friend had to change hers when she got points.
  11. Perfectly legal. I ask DVLA regularly. This year I got caught by a speed camera (blush) and went on a speed awareness course to avoid points. I had to show my licence and my marriage certificate (because it was still in my maiden name) and there was no problem at all. The only problem I sometimes have is that some insurers won't accept a European licence, but actually I’m not sure whether they are legally allowed to do that. I always make sure that I state that I have a French European licence.
  12. LOL it was my cat's name, but rather appropriate for on here, don't you think? :o) I know it's easy enough to change - although I'm still driving on my French licence after 13 years in the UK -dla say I don't have to and I like the picture because I was only 22 ;o) I'm just concerned that her age may be an issue and they refuse to let her have a licence. She'd be gutted :o( I actually can't remember how car insurance works in France - I know it isn't quite the same. Oh and we'll be changing to left hand drive cars rather than trying to keep or register our UK ones - just in case that has an influence on anyone's reply. (Still smiling at mum driving a chariot - I know we are planning a move to rural France but not that rural! LOL)
  13. We are in the process of researching our return to France. I say return because my husband is French and we lived there for 11 years before coming to the UK. We will be bringing my mother with us. We already live together and know there will be no issues from that alone. However I do worry about the implications of moving her to France. There are a number of concerns, but here we are on the healthcare thread so let’s go with this one here: My husband will be in employment (to begin with) and then hopefully we’ll be running our own little business together and paying the relevant cotisations. My mother is 77 years old and has her UK state pension and an earned pension. What will be her healthcare rights? She has no major health problems at present - just the odd ache and pain (when she over does it!) but she isn't getting any younger and she's worried about what will happen if her health goes and she needs major or long term treatment.
  14. We are in the process of researching our return to France. I say return because my husband is French and we lived there for 11 years before coming to the UK. We will be bringing my mother with us. We already live together and know there will be no issues from that alone. However I do worry about the implications of moving her to France. There are a number of concerns, but here we are on the driving thread so let’s go with this one here: My mother is a VERY active 77 years old. She has her own little car and likes to be independent. Whilst she wouldn’t want to drive on major roads she would still want to nip down to the local shops or market. Does she need to change her licence for a French one? Will they give her one? Even in the UK she now has to renew it every few years. What about insurance – will she be heavily penalised because of her age and because she hasn’t lived in France and therefore driven on the right? Looking forward to your replies – and no I won’t tell you where we are moving to so you can keep off the roads! ;o)
  15. After 13 years in England we plan to return to France. I say return because my husband is French and we lived there for 11 years before coming to the UK. Now you may wonder why I have come to an ex-pat forum for help. We are both fully bilingual and have “done it before”. The thing is we haven’t. Back in those days – a whole other lifetime ago – my husband was in the French army. He had, all be it low, a regular salary and all the social security “stuff” etc was taken care of. We’ve been in the UK for 13 years where he has worked in various businesses working himself up to a comfortable position of senior manager – but we have never run our own business. Now, at the risk of sounding naïve, we (like thousands of others) have the dream of leaving the “rat race” and returning to France for a more independent life. We have been lucky with property and even in the present climate anticipate having a very decent lump sum to buy a property/gite business without mortgage, or our ideal would be a small campsite as we are both from caravanning families. Our difficulty is working out the viability of this project. If we bought a campsite we could only afford something very much of the lower end small rural site with room for expansion, maybe with a gite or two. We are under no illusion about sitting around with a glass of rosé all day and just collecting the money. We want to work, develop and improve to make this the best little campsite within our means. What we can’t work out is whether the revenue from such a project would be sufficient to live on or whether it would only be suitable as a second income. It’s a bit like asking someone you have never met before what their salary is. Of course if we are buying a business then we are entitled to see the books and the turnover etc but how does this compare to a salary? For example one opportunity mentions a turnover of 70k Euros but obviously that’s before all the running costs. How do I work out what sort of standard of living this would give us? Another person I spoke to said he made an “income” of 10k from a small campsite, but that they called that “pocket money” as nearly all of their living costs (heating, water, electric, 1 car and even some food) was able to be put through as business costs. If I was applying for a job with a salary of 20k, 30k, 40k or 50k I’d know exactly what standard of living this would correspond to, but in this situation I’m totally lost. Don’t get me wrong – I know the whole thing is about a change of lifestyle. We are prepared to work and get our hands dirty. I’m not bothered about driving a “posh” car, but I do want to be able to afford to get it repaired if it breaks down. I’m not bothered about designer labels but I do want to be able to afford to jump on the next (budget) flight to the UK if either of my kids (young adults) needs me. Without being rude and asking your income is there anyone out there who runs a small gite or campsite business that can tell me whether this is sufficient to live on and if not what percentage of your income does it represent. Also would you consider that you are just getting by or you are living relatively comfortably? Whilst we’re at it, can anyone tell me, how long is a piece of string? :o) Alternatively can anyone direct me to articles or links with example accounts for this type of business? I do appreciate that, for me, moving from employment with salary to self employment is likely to be the biggest culture change of all! Best wishes to all, Lisa
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