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Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Old Jul 25th 2011, 11:12 am
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Default Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Hi there, new to this site but was hoping someone might be able to give me some info. We are a family of 5 soon to be 6 and are hoping to relocate to Bordeaux. I am British and my husband is French. Currently live in Glasgow. We have always wanted to live in France together as we feel it offers a better quality of life for family living. Any thoughts either good or bad would be very much appreciated. We are thinking of Bordeaux because it has an International School and is also a great location for beaches, not too rural, good food/wine and so on.

We would be renting initially so was wondering on general cost of living, rent, utilities and also what facilities are there for children. My lot are aged 6, 4 and 2.

Thanks in advance for any info.

Angela
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Old Jul 25th 2011, 1:31 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

I spent some 2 weeks there , a few years ago ; they were rebuilding the public transport in the city centre then , which I'm told is fabulous now ; the town and the surroundings can be be vey nice ( obviously , there always can be bad spots , takes some learning , asking and getting about ) ;
we stayed at Meriadeck part on the occassion , but this is not important , as there are many other areas inside the circular road ( La Rocade A 630 , I think ) ; much depends on your schooling , travel and other requirements .
Oddly , I did not find it particularly cosmopolitan ( maybe : compared to a few other towns I know well ) but if you can learn and like the French ways , you'll be fine .
There are some very nice brasseries , if you like that sort of thing ( I do ) , there is a really good organic market and the wineyards nearby and around are terrific , I recommend St. Emillion and Graves . Also , it is not far from nice places by the Atlantic seaside , like St. Sebastien , Bayonne , Biarritz...
If I had my way , I wouldn't mind to go and live there ( although , I'm told : it rains a lot in the winter ) .
My 2 EUrocents of comments .
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Old Jul 25th 2011, 3:49 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Just question as to why you want the international school when your children are so young. At this age they should settle very quickly into the french system and will rapidly be bilingual, which is one of the great advantages of living in France (though they may of course be already as your husband is french..)

Anyway I am sorry but I have no info on the school, so can't help
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Old Jul 25th 2011, 4:54 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Thank you to you both for your replies. It does sound a wonderful part of France although I don't know it as well as my husband. He is originally from Paris but we don't want to live there, ( much to my in laws dismay)!! We are drawn to this area because of the climate and from what I gather Bordeaux is not a sleepy town but has things going on. The wine regions sound great and definately something we'd be interested in.

Our children are fully bilingual and my 4 year old is starting to show me up!! We thought the International school would be a good option as it offers both curriculums. We are very open though to them going into the French system and it does have the added advantage of getting the children integrated better.

What I don't know however is the best area to live and how much it would be for a decent property. We intend to keep our UK property so won't be in a position to buy for quite some time. Any info on this would be very welcome and thank you again for taking the time to reply.
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Old Jul 25th 2011, 6:34 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Originally Posted by Angela4 View Post
Hi there, new to this site but was hoping someone might be able to give me some info. We are a family of 5 soon to be 6 and are hoping to relocate to Bordeaux. I am British and my husband is French. Currently live in Glasgow. We have always wanted to live in France together as we feel it offers a better quality of life for family living. Any thoughts either good or bad would be very much appreciated. We are thinking of Bordeaux because it has an International School and is also a great location for beaches, not too rural, good food/wine and so on.

We would be renting initially so was wondering on general cost of living, rent, utilities and also what facilities are there for children. My lot are aged 6, 4 and 2.

Thanks in advance for any info.

Angela
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Old Jul 27th 2011, 8:27 am
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

We found it incredibly difficult to find a property to rent, although we were looking in the mid pyrenees.

We ended up here, about 90 mins from Bordeaux, in a house owned by a friend of a friend. It's 4 bedroom with an office two bathrooms etc and costs 700 euros a month.

We only drove through Bordeaux and haven't actually visited yet, it is on the agenda. But all the places around here are lovely. In fact we think we might find somewhere to buy around here now.

Our children are registered to start in the local French school in Sept, we thought it might help them integrate, also I understood the local schools need pupils to help funding etc.

edit:

We're finding the cost of living a bit more expensive than the UK. Food is marginally more expensive, bills are a fair bit more, but we're in a much bigger house here. The weird things are having to pay to have a bank account etc. We went to find a smoke alarm and they wanted 40 Euro's so bring things like that with you. In fact all electrical type things are expensive here, so are childrens shoes. Wine is cheap though.

We have a 7 and a 4 year old. The weather hasn't been so great since we've been here so we've not done much. The local piscine is really good and really clean. In fact everywhere we go is clean, especially the toilets (lots of dog poo on the pavements though). We found an adventure playground and waterpark but again these are expensive. I think my wife also found a play area (climbing, ball pits etc.) but they a few and far between and again expensive, I think 10 euros where we paid maybe £2 in the uk.

But the idea for us was to be more outdoors anyway, it seems the weather didn't want us too though

Last edited by loy loy; Jul 27th 2011 at 8:43 am.
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Old Jul 27th 2011, 12:15 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Hi loy loy

Many thanks for the info. I'm glad you managed to get somewhere to rent. Is there any particular reason why it is so difficult or is it just the fact that we would be new to the country and have no credit history there? Would it help that my husband still has an active bank account?

I thought cost of living would be a bit cheaper as my MIL always says it's more expensive over here in the UK. I guess I'll have to see for myself.

Sorry to hear about the weather, it is surprisingly nice at the moment in Glasgow but it sadly never lasts. I strongly suspect that overall the weather will be much better where you are so just hold on!!

I see you've just recently moved. How are you settling in? Is it what you thought it would be? Sorry for the questions. You seem to be in a similar position to us from what I gather as I have read your other posts (don't worry, I'm not stalking you) We will also be working for a UK company on a self employed basis so it will be interesting to see how you get on. I am in contact with another Brit who works for the same company that my husband and I will work for. He is in Nantes and has been in France for 10 years plus so knows it inside out. If you need any info I could always ask him so please just let me know.

Good luck with settling in. We are hoping to move all the family early next year but my husband will start working before then, probably in September.

Thanks again for the info.

Angela
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Old Jul 27th 2011, 12:26 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Hello Angela4

No it wasn't the credit that was the problem, we just couldn't find anywhere. Most of the places we found wouldn't rent long term over the summer because of the holiday rental income.

It's going ok at the moment. I think a lot of our costs are just because we have moved and the things that go with that. There wasn't oven here so we had to buy one, no TV so we HAD ( ) to buy a dish - my wife would say different.

I think the food/meat etc is slightly more expensice, not alot. 500g of mince cost me just over 4 euro the other day, wheras in the uk I think it was more like £2.99.

what we are noticing is our children eating alot more fruit and veg, mainly becasue they have a taste to them. They are going crazy for the melons and stawberry's. Still cant get them to eat salad though

No regrets at all so far, even if the weather isn't great.
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Old Jul 27th 2011, 12:34 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Originally Posted by loy loy View Post

.....We went to find a smoke alarm and they wanted 40 Euro's so bring things like that with you....
Be careful when buying electrical appliances.
With regards to smoke detectors, in addition to the CE mark the detector must be certified to EN 14 604. It's a guarantee of reliability. Indeed, this standard requires a minimum of reliability control (reaction to fire, shock, electromagnetic compatibility, sound power, etc).
Many smoke detectors in France and elsewhere that do not conform to EN 14 604 are still in many stores, including major retailers, and especially on-line.
Some manufacturers have recently acknowledged problems and recalled their products, namely Sentinel and Velleman. It's not that they don't work, they do. But there's a delay in the detection circuitry which results in the alarm being given later than prescribed by legislation.

Many folks have been led to believe that smoke detectors are now immediately compulsory. Although the text of the new law was adopted in 2005 and became valid during 2010 with the implementing decree published earlier this year, I believe that the general public have until 2015 to get at least one smoke detector installed.
Bottom line is, get a good one! A cheap & 'cheerful' unit bought from a street vendor whilst on holiday in Asia (or on the web) is not recommended.
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Old Jul 27th 2011, 12:38 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Originally Posted by Tweedpipe View Post
Be careful when buying electrical appliances.
With regards to smoke detectors, in addition to the CE mark the detector must be certified to EN 14 604. It's a guarantee of reliability. Indeed, this standard requires a minimum of reliability control (reaction to fire, shock, electromagnetic compatibility, sound power, etc).
Many smoke detectors in France and elsewhere that do not conform to EN 14 604 are still in many stores, including major retailers, and especially on-line.
Some manufacturers have recently acknowledged problems and recalled their products, namely Sentinel and Velleman. It's not that they don't work, they do. But there's a delay in the detection circuitry which results in the alarm being given later than prescribed by legislation.

Many folks have been led to believe that smoke detectors are now immediately compulsory. Although the text of the new law was adopted in 2005 and became valid during 2010 with the implementing decree published earlier this year, I believe that the general public have until 2015 to get at least one smoke detector installed.
Bottom line is, get a good one! A cheap & 'cheerful' unit bought from a street vendor whilst on holiday in Asia (or on the web) is not recommended.
Thanks.

I bought mine from homebase in the uk, assume they are ok. I wanted another one because the house is so big, but at 40 euro you can forget it.
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Old Jul 28th 2011, 2:07 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Bordeaux is a beautiful part of France. I didn’t find that they was much else in the area other than the city, but then again I'm a province/ cote d'azur fan
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Old Jul 29th 2011, 3:50 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

France is one of the most expensive country in europe, be prepared for that, you will pay for many things you are not used to normally. Especially dining and entertainment, you also have toll roads and bridges (and it is not just few cents, if you drive across france you would pay around 70 EU just on tolls). I just returned from west france and while the weather was terrible, I really liked it there i wouldn't mind to live there but definitely the most expensive country in europe. And yes, wine is dirt cheap, but that is the only thing where you may save money....
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Old Jul 29th 2011, 4:37 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

So true , about France , generally ;
also , you'll eat much better at the lowest Cafe de la Gare then in most of the rest of EUrope , at a really fair price ; many other items and costs are just completely above any reasonable ceiling ; don't know what caused this , it's gotta be the Euro ( the Germans call it "Teuro" = epensive ! ) ;
similar in Spain , except that you don't eat so well on every corner there and the good booze can cost more than in France now .
Still , if that was a possibility , I'd be there next week , not Aquitaine but rather Cap d'Agde/vicinity ...

Last edited by Ray51; Jul 29th 2011 at 4:41 pm.
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Old Aug 18th 2011, 6:30 pm
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

Originally Posted by Angela4 View Post
Hi there, new to this site but was hoping someone might be able to give me some info. We are a family of 5 soon to be 6 and are hoping to relocate to Bordeaux. I am British and my husband is French. Currently live in Glasgow. We have always wanted to live in France together as we feel it offers a better quality of life for family living. Any thoughts either good or bad would be very much appreciated. We are thinking of Bordeaux because it has an International School and is also a great location for beaches, not too rural, good food/wine and so on.

We would be renting initially so was wondering on general cost of living, rent, utilities and also what facilities are there for children. My lot are aged 6, 4 and 2.

Thanks in advance for any info.

Angela
Hi, I'm new to this site as of yesterday so I hope I'm doing things right, I'm not so good on computers. I live about 45km from Bordeaux in a small village called Aillas. I absolutely love Bordeaux and get a real buzz every time I visit. It's just so beautiful and has a very safe chilled out feel to it, even when you get a bit lost down side streets. We looked at some property brochures last month and were shocked at the price of property there and the difference in what you get for your money there as to where we live, but you're paying for the city life style there and all its splendour on your doorstep. The cost of living is high here, everything, food, clothes, electricity, reataurants, cars, white appliances, I just laugh at them and walk out. When I go to England on visits I just shop til I drop and stock up on a whole winter or summer wardrobe, and feast on treats like Dairymilk choc. The small local schools are wonderful, our youngest daughter went to our local primary school for 2 years and was very happy, not so sure about the secondary ones, our children all left here to go back to he UK to finish their education as they were treat terribly, they were very racist towards them and made them miserable, and if we'd had the money we would definately have chosen an International school. If we can help in any way just ask. Good luck
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Old Aug 19th 2011, 11:30 am
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Default Re: Hi, any info on life in Bordeaux??

That's awful, I'm sorry about your childrens experiences.

For us the French have been nothing but lovely towards us as English. Although the children don't start school until September they have made lots of friends in the town. Perhaps we've been lucky, our neighbours often bring us gifts of fruit and veg too.
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