How to move to France ? Hire a moving company or do it yourself.

Jos Deuling,  Thursday, 3 October 2013


If you are going to live and work in , then sooner or later you start thinking about the move. Recently I have spent some time on the Internet looking for information about this topic. There is quite a lot to find online, but I also have consulted the book .

Tip 1.Bring your old furniture or buy new stuff ?

A move is the right time to take a serious look at your household. You may wonder if the furniture does fit in your new home. I read somewhere a remark that 'northern furniture' would not fit in a southern climate. The first thing that comes into my mind are the old classic sofas and armchairs. If I had them, I would leave them behind.

You may save on the removal costs with a rigorous selection of your furniture, and you may even sell the excess furniture on the web. The rest may go to charity or end up at the landfill.

If you buy new stuff in your home country (for example at IKEA's), you can tell them to deliver it at a local IKEA store in France. That seems particularly helpful to me. You can also look for new or used things on your new location. Look for typical French furniture that fits the area where you will live. is especially useful if you have a second home or cottage that you want to rent. It is not a disaster when it breaks.

Tip 2. Can the removal van park near the home ?

In France, you might find it impossible to park the moving van near the house. If the movers have to walk a longer distance, the price will go up. Not a problem of course but you should keep that in mind.

If access to your home is too narrow or too steep, you might have to hire a smaller van to move your stuff. You could also keep it temporarily in storage and take your time before moving it to your home.

Some other moving tips.

The Removal Firm.

If you are going to migrate to France and you take all your belongings with you you may want to move your belongings yourself. You will probably need to drive a couple of times back and forth. This will save you some money, but you can also choose to outsource the transportation to an international mover.

Benefits of an international mover :

  1. Less tiring of course. The movers do the heavy lifting. You have time to organize.
  2. Professional packaging.
  3. Movers are trained in packing and loading stuff in a truck.
  4. Movers know how to deal with heavy items such as washing machines and furniture.
  5. Your belongings are insured during transportation. If something breaks you get it reimbursed.
  6. Movers know how to handle all the paperwork. You are moving abroad and you have to deal with duties, taxes and Customs.
Which international mover to choose?

If you search on Google, you will find a lot of international movers.

Tips on choosing an international mover :

  1. Ask at least three quotes. This is normal practice.
  2. Select an officially recognized company. You can check the website of the (Federation of International Furniture removers).
  3. Do they offer the possibility to keep your stuff in storage?
  4. Do they offer the possibility of moving your stuff in parts? Some moving companies offer 'Groupage'. Groupage is collecting items from different clients.
  5. Do they specialize in removals to France? These companies drive more often to France, so you have more opportunities to select an appropriate moment. They probably also offer to transfer your household in parts.
  6. Do they have an office in France? If they do, they probably have a larger network of warehouses.
  7. Do they have references from customers?
  8. Do they take care of the import and export formalities?
  9. How long do you have to wait ? If the relocation company is not specialized in France, it will take more time before a trip can be scheduled.
While reading all the information on the Internet I also came across the following remarks :

  1. Give the movers a detailed itinerary and make sure they can park near the house.
  2. Give the mover a map of your new home and mark the boxes with a number or a colour, so then can put them easily in the right room.
  3. Photograph all your valuables.
International Removals Companies in the UK

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