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Everything posted by Blodwyn

  1. I'm going for the first time in 2 years, via RuinAir so won't be able to bring much back. I usually buy a few things that are hard to find or more expensive in France: kitchen stuff, clothes, makeup, food cupboard stuff or Quorn. I was thinking of getting a laptop as mine is dying. Would I be charged 20% tax for importing new things?

    I know I can't bring cheese or dairy produce, could bring a banana but not an apple!
  2. Someone just reported that they were not allowed to board a flight from the UK to Spain because, although their passport had 6 months until the expiry date, it had less than 6 months looking at the issue date..

    10 years ago, if you renewed your passport early, you were given a bit of extra time on the expiry date. I just checked my old one and I had a month. My new one has the same issue date and expiry date. Worth checking!
  3. Norman, is it needed for flights from the EU (in my case to UK)?
  4. I didn't say the bank told me!

    I said TP wrote saying my bank had written to them saying 'We ask that you no longer convert the GBP for this beneficiary'.

    Checking again, TP also said 'Please note that all our overseas payment are made in local currency, not Sterling. So TP will only send in euros but CA has told them not to!

  5. I wonder why that would happen now? I've been receiving the pension into my CA account for at least two years.

    I suspect that if it has to be paid in sterling CA will charge a fee - and maybe the exchange rate will be less favourable.

    I will have to go and talk to someone, maybe make an appointment as the manager is often at another branch. The pension is due on 27th so I don't know if Teachers' Pensions will be sending it this month!
  6. Credit Agricole -the only bank in the village#
  7. For once, Montauban has been pretty efficient! I applied in November, had an email telling me to get a rdv online, went to the Prefecture in April with my passport, had fingerprints done again. The card arrived by registered post two weeks later. A friend applying for the first time had an email requesting a copy of her birth certificate; her friend who applied two weeks earlier and was not asked for a birth cert. She now has an appointment in Montauban.
  8. I had a letter from Teacher's Pensions (I get a pension as my husband was a teacher) saying 'We have received the following message from your bank:

    We ask that you no longer convert the GBP for this beneficiary'

    I haven't had a chance to ask the bank yet but am puzzled. How can a French bank refuse payments in euros?

    Could it be another Brexit problem? Could it be that I asked to be taxed in France now? (But that was months ago.)

  9. Blodwyn

    Hearing aid

    I was hoping the 40 euros for

    30 days would cover me, but probably not.  These things are so easy to

    lose.  I wasn't wearing a mask but had glasses, earrings and a

    jacket. With a mask as well it would get complicated.  If it's in the

    house, it's well hidden because I've looked under furniture, in

    drawers etc.   I'm pretty sure I didn't go far from the house but o
    utside it's pretty well impossible with a lot of grass and

    little stones. My neighbour has been looking too.

    One was found in the church, but I hadn't been there, so unless someone found it and took it there, it can't be mine!  I hate pressure sales and of course can't take anyone with me.  The thing is, I manage well most of the time.  Today I could hear birds singing, talk to a friend, and to my French neighbour, no problem.  It's just certain situations where I struggle to hear, especially French people with strong accents and wearing masks.  After comments here I'm inclined to go for the free one.

  10. Blodwyn

    Hearing aid

    I saw Lidl had hearing aids, wish they'd been on sale a few wees ago!  Worth a try at that price, though they look quite big in the picture, not easy to hide.

    I went along on Thursday and was told the 1400 euro free ones would be free once the mutuelle let them know their contribution. How did they know it would be 1400?

    I assumed I'd get the free ones to try first, then I would see how much better the expensive ones were. But I was given the expensive ones, which come with a charger instead of needing batteries. They were programmed by computer.   At first I noticed a difference - I never heard the freezers in Lidl humming before.  Next day it was less obvious.  Late in the evening I found I only had one hearing aid!  I've looked everywhere with no success.

    I paid 40 euros insurance for the trial, so I hope they pay up because the initial price was 1999 euros.  There are so many electronic items these days, at much lower prices, so I don't understand how they can charge so much.

  11. Blodwyn

    Hearing aid

    Judith, I would certainly like to know more about your friend's hearing aid.

    Pomme, thank you for the info. Audika said they would have to write to the mutuelle company to find what they would contribute. Odd, as when I got glasses, the optician went online and found out. I phoned the insurance company, who said they would pay 600. They also said there is 'free' which isn't, and actually free and suggested I send them the devis.

    I just feel I'm being pushed into paying a lot!

    Alan Zoff - great story! Reminds me of a friend and the call from 'Microsoft' saying her computer needed sorting. She listened for a while and said yes, right, etc. Then pointed out she didn't have a computer.

  12. Blodwyn


    I don't think I have paper wasps and I don't make a point of annoying wasps, but was stung 3 or 4 times last year. As for them not nesting in a car unless it hasn't moved for months - my car is never still even for a week! (How would the wasps know how long it had been unused anyway?) Of course I try opening windows if I know a wasp is in the car, though that could let more in, but sometimes they just appear and I don't want that when I'm driving. I spray wasps if there's a nest close to the house, trap mice in the kitchen but otherwise let everything live. I hate it when hunters come on my land as I like to see wildlife, but I know deer and boar can damage property and have no other preditors to keep numbers down.

  13. Blodwyn


    Wow Ken! I think 20 stings might kill me. One resulted in a swollen sore arm that kept me awake.

    I like bats but haven't experienced them indoors. i don't mind mice outside but don't like them in kitchen drawers and cupboards. Two types of humane trap failed so I had to resort to the other sort.

    I can't cope with spiders - one of the 100 reasons I miss my husband as he would put them outside. The spikey ones bit.

    I posted wondering if anyone knew of a wasp deterrent. I don't like killing things and Raid is expensive when I have to spray a car with 4 doors and a hatch.
  14. Blodwyn

    Hearing aid

    Thanks for the responses. The Ameli form doesn't mention how much is reimbursed, but the devi for the 'free' hearing aid and the expensive one both state 480 euros. Not much, considering the total cost.

    I don't know what is essential and what is not. They say a battery charger is cheaper than buying batteries but a friend says batteries can are cheaper online.

    It's 450 for a Carte Audika which gives 60 back on the charger. A maintenance kit is 218 but 'offert'. I have no idea what the 450 for 'Accessoires' is, and whether I need them or could get cheaper elsewhere. It all seems designed to confuse!
  15. Blodwyn

    Hearing aid

    I finally took the decision and went to a hearing aid company. I cope OK most of the time but recently went to a funeral and could hardly hear any of what was said.

    I thought it was possible to get a free hearing aid though of course the company tried to sell me ones costing from 2000 upwards, then there's 450 for insurance, a fee for a battery charger (they say batteries cost 500 a year so rechargeables are cheaper). 450 for insurance, 300 for 'accessories'. After deducting the health system's 480 the total 4200! Or 87.50 monthly, for 4 years. I will get a bit from the mutual, to be contacted, but it's usually only 2-600.

    The 'free' one, disparaged by the woman I saw, works out as 1420. I'm confused! I asked the ENT man if expensive aids are much better than the free ones and he said ' Not really, maybe a bit better'. You get a 30 day free trial so I asked to try the 'free' one for 2 weeks and then the dear one, so I could compare.

    I feel pressured to spend more than I want to. I could manage it, but it would make a big hole in my bank account. Any thoughts?

  16. Blodwyn


    Thanks Lori. I don't like to kill things, but prefer not to be stung. In a tree across the field is an Asian hornet nest. Apparently they don't return to the nest in spring - but they lurk nearby and build another, I wonder where? Never had a bat in the house; mice despite having 4 cats at the time, lizards, a loir in the loft, deer , rabbits, wild boar outside. It's interesting living in the country.
  17. Blodwyn


    Wasps are busy already; I found a nest in the unused post box near my door. Last year I was stung 4 times and each time had a worse reaction, And I found 5 nests in my car last summer - so I'm a bit paranoid now.! I sprayed the box with Raid and all round the car doors as I was going out and wasps were lurking. The supermarket doesn't have any wasp killer yet. Does anyone have any idea how to deter them, especially from the car?
  18. Thanks for the helpful replies. I just have to decide whether to take the money now or leave it till I really need it. It might not increase annually but I hope it would not go down.

    Apparently if I leave the money in, my children will get it but if I die after age 75, they will pay tax on it. One of them is hoping to buy his first house; his share would at least pay the fees involved!
  19. Thanks for the helpful replies. I just have to decide whether to take the money now or leave it till I really need it. It might not increase annually but I hope it would not go down.

    Apparently if I leave the money in, my children will get it but if I die after age 75, they will pay tax on it. One of them is hoping to buy his first house; his share would at least pay the fees involved!
  20. A long time ago I paid a small amount into an Equitable Life pension. The amount wasn't enough to provide more than a tiny regular sum so I left it in. EL was taken over by Utmost. I decided to cash it in and believe 25% would be free of UK tax.

    This year I (perhaps stupidly) completed the form so my pensions will be taxed in France. I gather the 25% tax free won't apply here. Does anyone have any idea how much I will be taxed in France on the pension fund?

    I have been doing tax returns in France for years but when my husband was alive his teacher's pension was taxed in the UK and so was the widow's pension.
  21. I was interested in this post because I have a handful of shares in National Grid and Santander. I'd like to sell to make things simpler for my kids when I pop my clogs. I went online to National Grid but was told I couldn't sell online because I don't live in the UK.
  22. I know it's not really French finance, but I do live in France.

    I rent out the little UK house I used to live in. I have landlord's insurance though I only let to friends. I recently contacted my insurer to ask whether I'd be covered for water leaking through the bathroom floor into the kitchen. The reply was 'Can you send a copy of your schedule?' Surely they should have a record of my policy? Anyway, I wondered if there was another company I could switch to. Friends use Axa but they won't insure me as I don't live in the UK. Does anyone know of a reliable provider of insurance for a UK house with the landlord living in France ?
  23. Sorry this is very vague, 2nd hand info, but a friend is very concerned for a Brit who hasn't much French and doesn't live near enough for them to help in person.

    Court has found against someone in a dispute with next door farmer. They have to pay €15,000 by 16th August but can't. Willing to pay with a payment plan but say this isn't allowed, and bailiffs will repossess house. Person can probably raise €4000 soon.

    The person believes the farmer has the power to insist on the date for payment. Their lawyer is not responding.

    My questions: Is there someone/somewhere people can go for help over something like this? It seems cruel that they could lose their home when they are willing to make a downpayment and then instalments. We suggested they try the Mairie for a start. Any helpful sugestions appreciated.
  24. It might not help, but when we bought our first house we asked at the Mairie, they knew people and gave us phone numbers. It wasn't a big job though.
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