Even if France is your dream place to live, it’s inevitable that there will be moments where you find yourself dealing with homesickness. Although France is our closest neighbour, moving to a new country with a different language and different was of doing things can be difficult at first – even if it eventually turns out to be immensely rewarding. Here are our top tips for dealing with homesickness in France, from expats who’ve been through it themselves:

Thorough preparation

This truly is the key to any successful move. It’s important enough when moving in the UK, so when you take into account a move to another country, this becomes even more critical. It is wise to take the attitude that yes, things will be difficult and certainly unfamiliar at first. Equally, you will probably feel out of your depth. Understanding this at the outset should help you with the process of settling in and dealing with your homesickness.

Do your research

In many ways, this makes up part of the above. However, we see this as important enough to be a separate point, because it is so important to ensure that you learn as much as you can about your new community in advance. Finding out information about activities and things to do locally will help speed up your ability to deal with your homesickness in France.

It’s so important to find out as much as you can about your new community in advance.

Take advantage of your ‘foreignness’

France is very different to the UK. Firstly, it’s larger, with more open spaces, bigger and cheaper houses. Secondly, you’ve got spectacular scenery and, in general, a more laidback lifestyle (especially in the rural parts). Don’t presume that you will immediately get used to these changes and your new life. Instead, ask questions and speak to the locals. They will be interested in you and will understand that your life is very different. They will often then go out of their way to help in dealing with homesickness in France.

Pursue a hobby or join a group

If you have an interest, such as singing, playing sports or anything else, find your nearest classes or groups and sign up. Likewise, if you are religious, why not look for your nearest church or other place of worship? By doing this you are likely to meet people with whom you have something in common, and can hopefully build friendships with. Having a strong friendship group is so useful in dealing with homesickness.

Signing up to a hobby or group is a good way of dealing with homesickness.

Signing up to a hobby or a group will ensure you can meet people with whom you have something in common. This is a great way of dealing with homesickness in France.

Move at the best time for your children

Those with children often move to France during the summer holidays, to coincide with the new school term. Your children will be able to start the school year at the same time as everyone else. This should help them to deal with any homesickness. It will also give you the opportunity to meet people simply by attending school activities.

Find an expat community

Most cities, and many smaller towns, are home to expat communities. Here, you will be able to speak to people in the same situation as you, discuss experiences and share notes. This is the sort of thing that can create strong bonds and overcome homesickness.

Your city or town’s expat community will enable you to speak to people in the same situation as you.

Accept that homesickness is normal

There is no time limit on how long it could take for you to feel settled into your new life in France. Even after months have passed, you may find that there are days when you yearn for the UK. This is especially the case when you have left close family and friends behind. The trick to deal with this is to remember that it is completely normal. Try to embrace the differences between the two countries, and make the most of all that France has to offer you.

The Emigration Guide has been put together by overseas property experts and expats who understand the process of emigrating inside out, having emigrated themselves or helped others to do so. The guide will help you to:

  Ask the right questions
  Avoid losing money
  Avoid the legal pitfalls
  Move in successfully

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