Poste Restante

When we contacted our solicitor to advise him that we have a property sale in the offing, we told him that we are going to France, possibly before the sale completes. He took this news in his stride and indicated that we could do most of our signing before we go and then deal by  post with anything that arises later.

Of course we shall be travelling and we will not have a postal address.

I had a hazy idea about what to do but I think Mr Snail was a little more concerned. I glibly shrugged my shoulders and said we could just use a Poste Restante address. 

Did I really know what that meant – perhaps not but my vague notions turned out to be good enough. I had said that I believed that Poste Restante, being a French term, was probably something more readily achieved in France than here at home. It proved to be so.

Briefly, your mail is addressed to your name, with “Poste Restante” on the second line of the address, followed by the postal address of the Post Office where you intend to collect your mail. A small charge is levied, of course. Mail is held for  a limited time.

Not all services use the term Poste Restante (the USA calls their service General Delivery, for example) this and other details vary by country but Wikipedia has a useful reference list.

Post Restante in France

In France there is no requirement to do any setup, unlike here in the UK.

The service is offered by Le Poste and is available at any Post Office.

The name on the envelope should match the name on whatever form of ID one is using to collect the mail – typically a passport when travelling abroad. The collection charge in France is €0.85 per letter, more for a package.  In France mail is kept  for 15 days before returning to sender.

That should do us nicely, I think.

 

2 thoughts on “Poste Restante

  1. That sounds great. One of my penpals, an ex-pat, has a B&B in the Aude region of France. If you find yourself heading that way, I’ll be happy to let you know the details.

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