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Registering your car in Languedoc
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The complex and confusing part of wine in the Languedoc.

wine tasting in languedocWine Tasting

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Buying Languedoc WineWine Shop

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Relocating to France

Moving your car to Languedoc


Schools in LanguedocTaking your car to Languedoc

It seems the obvious thing to do: drive over to France, transporting all your most precious possessions (spouse, kids, Jamie Oliver cook books) by car.


The problem arises once you’ve unpacked. There you are, stuck in France with a car that screams “I’m British, me!” You can change the number plates (we’ll tell you how in a minute), but that steering wheel is not going to budge. Your headlights will be pointing in the wrong direction. And if you’re driving a big, bright red Volvo estate, when everyone else is knocking around in a clapped out old Peugeot, you’ll stand out like a sore thumb.


No-one in France will want to buy your big red Brit bus, and driving it all the way back to Blighty to try and flog it will cost you dearly. Chances are you’ll spend the next five years only overtaking when there’s no-one else around for miles, and feeling slightly self-conscious when manoeuvring in tight spaces in small Languedoc villages.


One day your oh-so-British banger will bite the dust. With a huge sigh of relief, you’ll be able to buy a Peugeot (or Renault, or Citroën, or whatever), with the steering wheel on the right side (by which we mean, on the left side).

Alternatively, you could just sell your UK car before you leave, and save yourself a lot of hassle.


Driving a UK vehicle in France: what you need to know

  1. UK vehicles have their headlights aligned for UK driving: you’ll need to fit deflectors to avoid dazzling oncoming traffic.
  2. If you fit French plates and then put your UK vehicle through the contrôle technique (the biennial French equivalent of the MOT), you’ll end up having to change your headlights anyhow (those sticky deflector strips won’t suffice). This can cost you dearly.
  3. If your car is not a make commonly found in France, local garages may be less able to supply repairs and spare parts will be harder to come by.
  4. To import your UK vehicle to France and put it on French number plates, contact your local DRIRE (Direction Régionale de l’Industrie de la Recherche et de l’Environnement) for details of documentation needed, and a demande de certificat d’immatriculation (a re-registration form).
  5. The biggest stumbling block for older or non-standard vehicles can be the need for a manufacturer’s construction certificate (attestation de conformité). If you have any doubts about how easy it will be to register your car, contact the DRIRE before bringing the vehicle over.



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