How to get your UK Provisional Learner Driving License

Obtaining an UK Provisional Learner Driving license for those who do not have it, is often a priority for every new arrival here. Without it you often cannot apply to many jobs and in general, in this country it’s very difficult to get any daily chores done if you do not have a car. Furthermore, I also noticed that commuting by public transport is more expensive than commuting by car.

If you have an EU driving license, the process is quit simple. Any EU driving license is valid here. If you want, you can change it to a UK one quite easy. If you did not come with a driver’s license here, it’s not a problem, the procedure for obtaining one it’s relatively simple here.

First you apply for the UK Provisional Learner Driving License. With this license you can drive anywhere in the country except the motorways (the roads that start with the letter “M”) as long as you are supervised from the left seat by an experienced driver. You have be registered as a Learner driver on the car insurance. The experienced driver who supervises you must also be registered on the insurance of the car, must be at least 21 years old and have a driver’s license (UK or EU) for at least 3 years.

The driver who drives with a provisional learner permit must have displayed 2 square signs with the red letter “L” placed somewhere in a visible place in the front and on the back of the car. I recommend the magnetic ones because they do not leave permanent traces on the car.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is L-Plate-Size.gif
Continue reading “How to get your UK Provisional Learner Driving License”

UK Cum sa obtii permis de conducere provizoriu Anglia

How to get your UK Provisional Learner Driving License – ENGLISH article

Obtinerea unui permis de conducere provizoriu Anglia pentru cei ce nu au este deseori o prioritate pentru toti care ajung aici. Fara el deseori nu poti aplica la multe locuri de munca si in general in tara asta este foarte greu sa iti rezolvi diferite treburi zilnice daca nu ai masina. De asemenea am observat ca naveta cu transportul in comun este mult mai scumpa decat mersul cu masina personala.

Daca ai permisul de conducere din Romania, treaba este simpla. Orice permis de UE este valabil si aici, si daca doriti vi-l puteti preschimba in cel de UK foarte usor. Daca nu ai venit cu el din Romania, nu e nici problema, procedura de obtinere este relativ simpla aici.

Se aplica prima oara pentru Permis de conducere Provizoriu Anglia. Cu acest permis puteti conduce oriunde in tara cu exceptia autostrazilor (cele care incep cu litera “M”) si atata timp cat sunteti supravegheat din stanga de un sofer calificat si sunteti trecut ca sofer Learner pe asigurarea masinii. Soferul calificat care va supravegheaza trebuie sa fie de asemenea trecut pe asigurarea masinii, trebuie sa aibe minim 21 de ani si sa aibe carnet (UK sau UE) de minim 3 ani.

Soferul care conduce cu carnet provizoriu, trebuie obligatoriu sa aibe 2 semne patrate cu litera “L” rosie , puse undeva vizibil in partea din fata si in spatele masinii. Recomand pe cele magnetice pentru a nu ramane cu urme pe masina.

Continue reading “UK Cum sa obtii permis de conducere provizoriu Anglia”

UK NINO – How to get it and how long does it take to get it?

I notice that this is a wanted topic and in spite of Brexit (which apparently will not be happening), the world still wants to come here. NINO is the equivalent of our Social Security Number, and without it, you basically do not exist in the UK (England, Scotland, or Northern Ireland). You need it in order to pay your taxes and social contributions, and without it you can not work legally and you can not benefit from social or medical services. I will tell you how my experience was and the steps I took to obtain the NINO (National Insurance Number) in the UK.

Continue reading “UK NINO – How to get it and how long does it take to get it?”


[Pentru a citi acest articol in Limba Romana click AICI]

A month ago we were packing again our luggage to move to another country. After the very useful experience in France, we were now ready to move to England, UK. After living for a year in France, we left with mixed impressions. I knew we had to move somewhere where we speak the language and where we can really integrate into society, and I believe we could not truly achieve this there.

When the expiry date of my fixed-term contract in France was approaching, I started looking for work options in England. After some promising interviews, I still had nothing safe and signed in my hand, but I did had an invitation to come for a follow up face-to-face interview that seemed 80% sure. I took a risk and quickly bought a one way only plane ticket and I came with all my luggage. I was aware that if I came only for a few days visit just for the interview and somehow it failed, I would return to Romania with the tail between my legs and depressed and it would be very difficult for to ever come back. Fortunately, the interview here went very well.

I do not recommend to anyone to come here without having secured a job in advance, but be aware that once you get here and settle down, you are more likely to find work. Most Continue reading “FIRST 30 DAYS AS EXPAT IN ENGLAND UK”


[to read this article in ENGLISH click HERE]

Acum o luna ne faceam iar bagajele pentru a ne muta in alta tara. Dupa experienta foarte folositoare din Franta, eram acum pregatiti pentru a ne muta in Anglia, UK. Dupa un an de locuit in Franta, am ramas cu impresii mixte. Stiam ca trebuie sa ne mutam undeva unde vorbim limba si unde ne putem integra cu adevarat in societate, si asta cred ca nu o puteam face acolo.

La apropierea termenului de expirare a contractului cu durata fixa de munca din Franta, am inceput sa imi caut variante de munca in Anglia. Dupa cateva interviuri promitatoare nu aveam inca nimic sigur in mana dar aveam o invitatie sa vin pentru un al treilea interviu fata in fata, cu aceasi firma ce parea 80% sigur. Mi-am asumat un risc si am cumparat repede bilet de avion doar dus si am venit cu toate bagajele la mine. Eram constient ca daca vin doar cateva zile in vizita la interviu si cumva pica, m-as intoarce in Romania cu coada intre picioare deprimat si mi-ar fi foarte greu sa ma intorc. Din fericire interviul aici a decurs foarte bine.

Nu recomand nimanui sa vina aici fara sa aibe un loc de munca asigurat, dar fiti foarte constienti ca odata ajunsi si stabiliti aici aveti mult mai multe sanse sa gasiti de munca. Majoritatea angajatorilor vor sa discute cu candidatii fata in fata si vor pe cineva care e deja in tara, neluand in considerare candidatii din alte tari. Inca un lucru important e faptul ca iti iei inima in dinti si faci acel pas inainte cu curaj. Daca stai in comoditatea din tara unde e patutul cald, si e bine aproape de mami, tati si surioara care sa te ajute, pai probabil nu vei pleca niciodata. Din pacate in Romania nu iti vei pune niciodata in valoare potentialul tau. Primul sau primii ani in Anglia vor fi grei, asta nu voi nega. Fiti pregatiti sa acceptati joburi si salarii care nu suna prea bine la inceput, dar odata ce


How to get PACS in France


PACS or Pacte civil de solidarité, is a concubinage agreement that offers the benefits of a married couple but with fewer obligations. Initially developed at the request of gay couples to declare themselves a family unit, it has become very popular among hetero couples and a popular method used by immigrants and refugees to obtain a visa or residence permit.

In France, there is a well-thought-out and subtle tactic to encourage marriage and punish unmarried young people, regardless of their sexual orientation. If you are around 30-years-old and you are still alone, you are prone to being refused having social and professional benefits, you are prone to pay much higher taxes to the state (the celibate member can have 30% of his income taxed versus 14% if you are in a couple) and at any bank you you go will have lower chances to get a credit if you are single, so many young people choose to compromise by making a PACS contract with their partners.

The procedure is very similar to marriage, if not identical, and because we are in France,  it is very complicated and involves a lot of bureaucracy. Although it practically takes 5 minutes to sign the papers, it takes months to get to that point. The starting point is the government site Continue reading “How to get PACS in France”

Cum sa faci PACS in Franta / How to get PACS in France

How to get PACS in France

PACS sau Pacte civil de solidarité , este un contract de concubinaj , care ofera avantajele unui cuplu casatorit dar cu mai putine obligatii. Aparut initial la cererea cuplurilor gay de a se putea declara ca o unitate familiala , a devenit foarte rapid popular in randul cuplurilor hetero dar si o metoda populara folosita de imigranti si refugiati de a obtine viza sau permis de rezidenta.

In Franta exista o tactica bine gandita si subtila de a incuraja mariajul si de a pedepsi pe tinerii celibatari , indiferent de orientarea lor sexuala. Daca esti injur de 30 de ani si inca esti singur , esti predispus la privare de beneficii sociale si profesionale , esti predispus sa platesti taxe si impozite mult mai mari la stat (celibatarul plateste si 30% taxa pe venit fata de 14% cel aflat in cuplu) si la orice banca vei avea sanse mai mici de a lua un credit daca esti celibatar asa ca multi tineri aleg varianta de compromis facand un contract PACS.

Procedura seamana foarte mult cu mariajul , daca nu e identica , si pentru ca suntem in Franta , bineinteles ca e complicata si implica multa birocratie. Desi ea practic dureaza 5 minute cat sa semnezi niste hartii , pentru a ajunge acolo , dureaza luni bune. La baza e siteul guvernamental   , unde veti gasi o lista cu ce documente va trebuie daca sunteti strain sau mergeti direct la primaria de care apartineti si cereti dosarul de PACS , ce contine si o lista cu tot ce va trebuie:

Continue reading “Cum sa faci PACS in Franta / How to get PACS in France”

Prague dream vacation


Prague, a city that I always wanted to see and experience. I was always looking at the pictures of others and it seemed to be one of the most beautiful places in the world. After seeing it, I can say with all my heart that it is. The city offers beautiful landscapes, architecture, great old pedestrian squares, world class beer and bars where you can still smoke inside, and all this for prices almost identical to those in Romania.

From Romania there is no low cost direct flight to Prague, but the ticket on Czech Airlines is not too expensive, around 150 EUR per person bought a month in advance. Our 3-star hotel taken with TUI agency cost us only 121 EUR for 7 nights and not only it was very decent it also had breakfast included in the price.

From Václav Havel Airport to Prague city center take the AE (Airport Express) bus, the trip takes about 40 minutes and the ticket is bought directly from the airport counter and costs 60 Czech crowns (CZK) or about 2.3 EUR per person. I would advise to bring with you some Czech currency  in order to buy the tickets, otherwise you have to deal with the currency exchange offices in the airport that offer rip off exchange rates. You will get of at the “Hlavní nádraží” central railway station, which is a huge underground hub where you can access the buses, the subway, the S trains and especially the trams. I underline the trams because these are the main and easiest way of transportation in the city. The Czech capital is covered everywhere by tramlines, and they come every three minutes. The trams have dedicated stations and dedicated lanes, and around half of them are of the latest generation of Skoda trains. Tram tickets are found at any cigarette or food kiosk and are divided according to the length of time. A 30-minute ticket costs 24 CZK (1 EUR), and one 24-hour ticket costs 110 CZK (4.3 EUR) and can be used from the moment of validation on any line and any time you want until the expiration date.

[Read more after pictures]

Continue reading “Prague dream vacation”

Expat beginner’s guide to moving to France


Probably many people today ask them selfs or consider moving to another country for various reasons. France is among the top destinations, alongside England and Germany for expats. They either leave due to financial difficulties and go looking for better paid work or go to take recognized studies. I’m sure in every country the accommodation process is different, I’m going to tell you how it’s going down here. France is not exactly a country that makes your life easy when you are new comer: the bureaucratic system is remarkably similar to the one in my home country Romania,  and not in a good way: it is heavy, bushy and requires a lot of running around and patience to get the essentials papers you need. But let’s start with the beginning:

  1. I am starting from the premise that you are leaving your country with a secured job already and you’re visa status is ok.  If you go to any country without a clear source of income you have a good chance that you will just wander a little around and return to your country with your tail between your legs as soon as the money runs out.  First of all , make sure you take enough cash to survive a month or two until you find decent accommodation. Without  2000 EUR in your pocket,  do not even think to head for the airport. Secondly, be sure to take your Identity Card, Passport (not necessarily in the EU, but it helps a lot), Birth Certificate in Original and be sure to make a translation and a legalized copy of it before you arrive , because here it costs around 50-60 euros to make a legal translation of this document; Marriage certificate, divorce certificate if you have , all translated, a few ID size pictures of you, and if the company will not provide accommodation (permanent or temporary) you should start to look for cheap hotels in the city. A hotel if booked in advance and for long term (one month or two) can be relatively inexpensive, costing 35-40 EUR per night.

2. A local phone number: This is the easiest step to accomplish and you will need it to complete all the next steps. We have chosen the operator  Lycamobile, which offers for 15 Euro per month  Continue reading “Expat beginner’s guide to moving to France”

Ghidul imigrantului de mutare in Franta / Expat beginner’s guide to moving to France

Expat Beginners guide to moving to France

Probabil multi Romani in ziua de azi isi pun intrebarea sau iau in considerare sa se mute intr-o alta tara din diferite motive. Franta este in topul destinatiilor , alaturi de Anglia , Spania si Italia. Ei pleaca fie ca sunt in dificultati financiare si pleaca in cautare de munca mai bine platita sau ca se duc la studii recunoscute. Sunt sigur ca in fiecare tara procedeul de acomodare este diferit , eu o sa povestesc cam cum decurg lucrurile aici. Franta nu este chiar o tara care iti face viata usoara cand esti nou venit: sistemul birocratic este remarcabil de similar cu cel din Romania , greoi , stufos si presupune multa alergatura si rabdare pentru a obtine diferite acte esentiale. Dar sa o luam cu inceputul:

1. Pornesc de la premiza ca plecati cu un loc de munca deja stabilit , daca veniti in orice tara fara o sursa de venit asigurata aveti sanse mari sa hoinariti putin si sa va intoarceti in tara cu coada intre picioare imediat cum se termina banii In primul rand fiti siguri sa va luati destui bani cash sa supravietuiti o luna sau doua pana va gasiti o cazare decenta. Fara 2000 de euro in buzunar nu cred ca are rost sa va duceti la aeroport. In al doilea rand fiti siguri sa va luati la dumneavoastra Carte de Identitate , Pasaport (nu este absolut necesar in UE dar ajuta mult uneori) , Certificat de nastere in Original si fiti siguri sa va faceti o traducere si copie legalizata dupa el dinainte sa plecati deoarece aici costa injur de 50-60 de EUR traducerea legalizata a acestui document; Certificat de casatorie, divort traduse daca este cazul ,  cateva poze tip buletin , si daca firma nu va asigura cazare (permanenta sau temporara) ati face bine sa va uitati de hoteluri ieftine. Un hotel ieftin daca se rezerva din timp si pe termen lung (o luna – doua) poate fi relativ ieftin , injur de 35-40 EUR pe noapte.

2. Un numar local de telefon : acesta este cel mai simplu pas de realizat si va va fi necesar la absolut toti pasii urmatori. Noi am ales operatorul Lycamobile , care pentru 15 EUR pe luna iti ofera apeluri nelimitate in Franta si 3 GB trafic de internet. Pentru a cumpara cartela initiala deobicei vi se va cere un act de identitate pentru inregistrare numarului. Odata ce aveti cartela , o puteti reincarca direct de pe internet cu 10 Euro , acelasi pachet de telefonie si date. Aveti foarte mare grija sa nu pierdeti numarul si cartela , deoarece pe acest numar veti fi inregistrat la banca si la alte institutii. Exista si operatori cunoscuti precum Orange , dar au niste preturi incredibil de scumpe la abonamente (20-40 EUR pe luna).

Continue reading “Ghidul imigrantului de mutare in Franta / Expat beginner’s guide to moving to France”