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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have convinced my husband to take a year off and move to France with me. We aren't moving for three years but after looking at how much there is to learn I figured that I would start by at least pinning down the location. Here are our needs... Can anyone suggest a location?
- our boys will be 11 and 8 and will speak French and need a primary school
- we would like to be in the mountains - near skiing
-if there was snowmobiling my husband would be delighted
- we would like to live in the country but not totally isolated.
- I will want to take French lessons somewhere so I can hopefully work on being fluent by the time we leave
- we will not be working bc we will both have taken the year off (saving for it - want a year out of the rat race) and will all have eu passports - we are teachers so we can't live anywhere that is crazy expensive.
- we would like to see as much of Europe as possible (husband wants to buy a c
Used car.....)

Thanks in advance!
 

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Not sure, but I think the 11 year old at least is looking at collège, not primary school. In any event, they can certainly enroll in the local public schools with no problem. Given the national curriculum, there isn't a huge difference in the schools (other than if you're living in an area that is "defavorisé" or something. For an overview of the French schools, take a skim of this: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/education...urybase/national_summary_sheets/047_FR_EN.pdf

If you want to be near the mountains and have a shot at visiting other places in Europe, think eastern France - Alsace (more of a commute to really high mountains, but great local cross country skiing and a combined French-German culture), Grenoble and environs or possibly Franche-Conté, which doesn't have all that many bigger towns, but is beautiful countryside and great skiing right on the Swiss border area. (Also not that far from the airport at Mulhouse which serves France (Mulhouse), Germany (Freiburg) and Switzerland (Basel).

Remember too, that as EU nationals living in France, you will need to have health insurance coverage - if you're not eligible for an EHIC through your passport country, you'll need to get private coverage similar to that required for someone applying for a visa. There's no real control for this, except that if someone gets hurt or sick and they find that you don't have coverage as residents, things can get awkward.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Eastern France is what we have been thinking of. I was thinking Annecy but that's too big for my husband. What about Chamonix or Les Houches? Any other specific towns I could look into?

Thanks for the advice about the health care. I have coverage from work in Canada that I can extend to overseas coverage for a year so that should work out.

Thanks also for the heads up on the college for my 11 year old. I had not thought of that. It will probably mean a slightly bigger town b/c I would love it if they could walk to their schools.
 

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What about Chamonix or Les Houches? Any other specific towns I could look into?
I've lived in Chamonix for the last 7 winters and I have never seen a member of the public on a snowmobile. If that is essential for your husband then you might want to think of somewhere else. Although having said that, just because I haven't seen a snowmobile doesn't mean they aren't allowed.

Chamonix and Les Houches are great. They are almost considered the same town.
For other skiing areas and cultures you have Courmayeur in Italy (20 minute drive through the Mont Blanc Tunnel). And Verbier in Switzerland is an hour and a half away over the Col de Montets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Where would be the best place to look for a ten month or one year rental home or apartment? We have two boys and will probably have a car. I know my husband would like to be in a house in the country but I'd like to be close enough to some people so we can make friends.
 

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Where would be the best place to look for a ten month or one year rental home or apartment? We have two boys and will probably have a car. I know my husband would like to be in a house in the country but I'd like to be close enough to some people so we can make friends.
If you are referring to the Chamonix valley then there a few places to look online. Some are generic and can be used to find places all over France e.g. Petites annonces gratuites d'occasion - leboncoin.fr
More specifically for Chamonix there is the Marie's Petites Anonces wall: Petites annonces logement
Cham Social - a local forum for all sorts of things: [ChamSocial] | The social network for Chamonix

And there are lots of estate/letting agents in the valley. I have a comprehensive spreadsheet of all of the ones that I know of. Send me a PM if you would like to forward it to you.
 

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I would love a list of the agents. If any of them speak English.....
(....she said pathetically - I am learning French and that's why we are moving there for the year - but it's not up to snuff yet)​
.......that would be great.

I'm not sure what you mean by a PM, but my email is <snip>

Thanks!
 

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It's really not a good idea to post your personal e-mail address on a public message board. A PM is a private message. You'll be able to send and receive PMs once you've posted 5 valid messages here on the Expatforum. You're almost there.

Give the system an hour or two after you post your 5th message to update your status.

To post a PM, click on the name of the person you wish to contact in the upper left corner of any message they have posted on the board. You'll get a drop down menu that includes the option to send them a private message.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you for catching that! I have never been on a forum before. It's all very new. Hopefully this puts me up to five!
 
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