moving to france

Moving to France from UK | What you need to know 

Are you considering moving to France from the UK? We’ve gathered some of our most helpful advice to get you started below. 


As a British national, you do not need a visa if you’re visiting France as a tourist, or if you’re conducting certain types of business including conferences, seminars, and trade exhibitions. 

If you intend to stay in France for more than 90 days, or settle here, you will need a Transport Passport (passeport talent). Because there are different kinds of passports and permits, it’s important to visit the official website for visa application to France. We’ve outlined a few below: 

  • UK based companies transferring long term to France. There are 2 types of permits: Intra-company transfer permit (ICT) and work permit for temporary workers 
  • EU Blue Card Talent Passport
  • Employees on assignment Talent Passport (salarié en mission)
  • Employees of a young innovative company Talent Passport
  • Employed artists Talent Passport
  • Providing long-term services to a client in France permit 
  • Self-employed work permit 
  • Self-employed artists Talent Passport
  • Investors in start-up companies Talent Passport
  • Research work permit 

If you plan on studying in France, check the official guide to study in the European Union. 

Travel and health insurance 

You must have health insurance cover to live in France. You can apply to be covered by the French healthcare system (Protection Universelle Maladie or ‘PUMa’) if you’ve been a resident in France for at least 3 months. If you’re employed in France, you can apply as soon as you start work. 

If you have a UK European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) it will be valid until the expiry date on the card. Once it expires, you’ll need to apply for a GHIC to replace it. You can apply for a GHIC on the NHS website.

Moving with pets 

Due to Brexit, you can no longer obtain EU pet passports in the UK. Therefore, you will need an animal health certificate to leave the UK with your pet. Once you enter the EU you can obtain your pet’s EU Pet Passport. Check the new rules on the official government website.

Cost of living 

If you are moving to France from the UK on a budget, try to avoid Paris, Nice, Bordeaux, Marseille, and Lyon. More economically friendly areas are Grenoble, Montpellier, Nantes and Lille. 

When comparing the overall cost of living between Paris and London, Paris was rated 15% cheaper than London. 


France has one of the best transportation systems in Europe. Popular modes of travel include car, taxi, bus, metro, train, tram, coach, and of course, bicycles. 

Your UK licence is recognised in France for as long as it is valid. After that, you need to exchange it for a French driving license. 

If your UK driving licence was issued on or after January 1, 2021, you can use it for one year. After that, you must exchange your UK licence for a French licence. You can apply online here.

Upon arrival

When you arrive in France, you must apply for a carte de séjour within three months of arriving.  

Setting up a bank account should be a top priority as you will need a French account to set up most things (mobile account, rent, utilities etc.) 

Moving to France to UK with a Removals Companies 

Choose an international removals company. Trusting someone else with all your possessions is stressful. So, make sure you find the removal company that best suits you when moving to France from the UK.

If you’re moving to France and require removals assistance, our France Removals service can help. We’re a friendly team with over 20 years of removals experience. We’re backed by South London Movers, London’s finest removals company.

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