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First stop France!

Considering packing up your life in the UK and moving to France? In all honesty, who hasn't flirted briefly with this dream? If you're a Brit who has already made the move across the Channel, or know of someone who has, you're probably also familiar with the quirks and charms of adjusting to a new life in France. Two British authors who have made names for themselves describing this very process of observation, adjustment and acceptance are Stephen Clarke and Charles Timoney.

With his dictionary of all things that you're bound to wonder about in France, Timoney provides a linguistic, culinary and bureaucratic overview of the French language in Pardon my French: Unleash your Inner Gaul. An essential accompaniment to getting settled in France, this guide helps bridge the gulf between rudimentary school-level French lessons and the real-life spoken French you'll need to navigate through the everyday - from dealing with paperwork and acquiring a home improvement loan or French real estate to understanding just what's being said at a dinner party.

Stephen Clarke, on the other hand, has written a fictional series based around the character Paul West and his attempts to fit into French life, and also Talk to the Snail: Ten Commandments for Understanding the French, a general guide which gives the reader an indication of how much his "fictional" series was actually steeped in fact. An example is with Clarke's admiration of the French healthcare system. First stop, doctor's surgery - next stop, pharmacy. If you have a health problem in France, there's no need to let it linger. Comparing the British model in a not-so-favourable light (in this case, no credit would be better than Clarke's bad credit!) with the French system, it's obvious which he prefers as a first stop for his health n eeds!

However, when it comes to debt advice, there's no need to avoid the English system, especially if you have assets or a debt consolidation loan remaining in the UK. Enjoy the best of both worlds - moving to France doesn't necessarily mean cutting all your ties with the United Kingdom. Make the most of your situation, but of course for the sake of simplicity, sort out any financial issues and consolidate debt before making the big move!

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