Life is change, and it is very difficult to change if we always stay in the same place. For one reason or another, we move houses, cities and even countries. Perhaps we are pursuing a job opportunity or some career goals, including education and special degrees. In other cases, we need to shift places because of family chances, like marriages, new children or a divorce. And the list of reasons goes on and on. What they all have in common is that they push people to change their place of residence, and this travel can take them beyond country borders.
There is a natural sense of attatchment to a place where you have been born, or at least spend a good part of your life. You bond to places, to people and to lifestyles, and sometimes those ties are more - and more powerful - than you first guessed. Just as they say, you never know what you got until you lose it.
Leaving the United Kingdom and relocating to a different country is a huge challenge, to say the least. There are a bajillion factors involved, from which school to pick for the kids if you have some - and how they will socialize if they don't share the language - to how to get a mortgage for your property abroad if you want to buy one. Money and stress are among the biggest fears about moving home, and going to a different country always ups the stress and the anxiety. However, if you do things right, changing the place where you live can pay off big time, and your life may change for the better.
There has always been a sort of love-hatred relationship between France and the British countries, which were either enemies or allies depending on the time period. Today, not all that tension has been lost, between the nationalism of the French people and the colonial spirit of the British people. However, France is among the most popular destinations for British expats. In fact, 1 in 20 British expats move to France, making it the fourth most popular destination in the world, behind Australia, the United States and Spain.
Of course, there are language barriers and cultural barriers, and the French people happen to be very territorial and severe when it comes to defend their own things. Yet, France is a beautiful place to live, its culture and weather are refreshing for the British people, and life there has many advantages compared with living in the United Kindom. In example, France is a better place to raise a family, because of facilitated access to good healthcare and public education, as well as the general safety and kindness of the suburbs. Purchasing a large house for the whole family is also more affordable than in the United Kingdom.
British expats living in France often have a good experience in the country. They are especially fond of the many economical and job opportunities, the very reasonable property prices, the world famous food - and very social eating habits -, the all around relaxed atmosphere and the environmental wonders - be them natural or architectural. France is also well positioned in the global market, so there are jobs available as well as educational opportunities, and it shouldn't surprise that so many British professionals leave the UK and head to France in the search for a better lifestyle and better positions.
There is some concern among British expats in EU countries about what sort of impact Brexit would have on them in case that it got approved in the referendum next June. So far, opinions are diverse, because there is nothing for sure. Even Brexit itself isn't certain, so the future is still a mystery.
British expats living in France are no exception, especially because France is the second country in the EU in terms of number of Brits living there. There are many speculations about what trouble Brexit could bring to Brits in France and other EU countries, and some fear their jobs or their estate plans could be affected. If Brexit becomes a reality, Britons in France will definitely lose some rights, but it doesn't mean they won't be allowed in the country or that they will have to leave their jobs.
There are strong rumours about Britons being forced to take French tests after Brexit approval, in an attempt of the local government to protect the French language and culture from the English intromission. Those who fail to pass the exam would be forced to take French lessons at the court hall. However, those who have mastered the French language should have no problem with this. All we have left to do is wait to see what happens after the referendum.
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