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Moving to France


We have been trying to work out how to get our things from London to France (department 23, Cruse, Limousin).

Hiring someone to do it seems very expensive, - quotes for a sprinter size van load from 800 to 1000, - and who knows we probably will need two runs.

So now we are thinking about renting a van for 3 days for a return trip but are not sure how much the overall cost will be.
We can get the ferry for 150 return (does that sound reasonable?) and the van for 105 + extra insurance. Then there are the tolls, which we aren't sure about. Is it worthwhile trying to avoid the toll road? How about fuel? How many kilometers per litre at a rough guess for a Sprinter type van. 8? 10? less!!! It would be really helpful, if any of you could give me an idea how much diesel you've used on trips down (Simon and Madmonk, have you got some numbers), the distance you went, and the size of van used.



If you go to and do a route map, it'll tell you the cost in tolls. Generally, they are fantastically cheap. Calais to the Alps was about 40, and in return you get the road to yourselves. Ferry price will vary enormously, but once you're in a van, cheap fares appear to vanish. However, try the Tunnel. Sometimes they have daftly cheap fares. Don't be tempted to try and use two cheap day returns, they bill you in full if you do.

Hi Anders, my last trip two weeks ago from Northampton to Parnac a total of 565 miles either way, eurostar short stay saver costing 124, fuel cost about 200, and the tolls 35/40 euros each way, driving time UK 2/3 hours, France about 6 hours, the van was a Toyota hi-ace similar size to a transit, use the toll roads if you can the other routes if you hit them at a bad time will take you forever, it is also worth letting people know that you are coming back empty you might find someone to help with the costs, also post this on totalfrance and other sites it can help and is also saving on fuel emissions, it always amazes me the amount of people running back and forth with empty vehicles.Hope this helps.

Diesel in France is a bit cheaper than in the UK. Petrol is more or less the same. Fuel economy depends rather critically on the speed you choose to travel at - with a biggish van, the frontal area really comes into it. You might find that cruising at 60 rather than 80 would cut the fuel bill by a greater percentage than the journey time is increased by. If you are heavy, don't hurry up hills.

Ferry/tunnel prices vary with demand. So you'll expect to generally pay more to travel around holiday weekends, and less in the wee small hours. Speedferries have cheap fares. They take "minivans" as long as they fit the size profile for a "large car" 2.9m high, 2m wide and up to 7m long inc trailer maximum.
Blue Sky

Hi Anders

I can't help you with the numbers I'm afraid as it is years since I last did the journey and I have no records of it. I think Madmonk somes it up well however and I think his place is about level with yours. I would also second (third?) using the toll roads as opposed to the back roads especially in a van. We moved our stuff in a coach which cost a fortune in fuel and tolls but I don't think a van will cost much more than a car.

Let me know if there is anything we can do to help at this end. When are you coming over?


Hey everyone and thanks for all the advice.

We've manged to find someone to take stuff over monday 2nd April, for a reasonable price. So we are gathering as many things a we can for this trip, - especially trying to get the big stuff over. So I'll be over on the 2nd and Judith will come over on the 5th. Until Thursday I'll only have my pushbike, so no big shopping trips I guess, hehe. Sitting in the garden drinking wine then I guess. Anyway things seems to have worked out somehow, looking forward to a trip to France now.

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