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9 changes for residents and second-home owners in France in September

From an increased fuel discount to insurance reform, and a price increase for Amazon Prime, we look at changes that may affect you in the coming month

Photos showing a petrol pump, Amazon Prime, a kid going back to school, and an insurance file

Each month brings new changes in France and September is no exception Pic: Bunyarit / Silver Wings / ESB Professional / Yuganov Konstantin / Shutterstock

A new month brings new changes in France. We look at the main changes to expect in September as a new rentrée begins.

Fuel discount extension

The fuel discount at petrol stations is to be extended from September 1, after a new decree confirmed it. The discount will increase to 30 cents per litre (25 cents before taxes) for diesel and petrol. 

This new amount will continue for September and October, before dropping to 10 cents in November and December. The rebate, which began in April, is currently 18 cents per litre.

Small petrol stations are to receive €3,000-6,000 in compensation for the measure, depending on how much fuel they sell on average per month.

Insurance reform

From September, policyholders will be able to change insurer at any moment and for any reason, as the loi Lemoine comes into force.  

Read more: Insurance in France: Contracts will soon be cancellable at any time 

Amazon Prime cost increase in France

From September 15, the membership cost for Amazon Prime in France (and Germany, Spain, Italy, and the UK) is set to rise from €5.99 to €6.99, and the price of the yearly Prime subscription will rise from €49 to €69.90. Amazon said that the new prices will apply to all renewed subscriptions.

Read more: Amazon Prime fees to rise by €20 a year in France from September 

Restaurant voucher increase

The daily ‘cap’ on restaurant voucher (tickets restaurant) amounts will rise from €19 to €25. They will also enable holders to buy all kinds of food products.

Increase of 4% for financial aid

Inflation has caused financial aid and benefits to be revalued by 4% more for the basic rate. This will apply to retirement and disability funds, RSA, and elderly care support. 

Government consultation group

A new group called the Conseil national de la refondation will hold discussions from September 8, bringing together the private, public and not-for-profit sectors with members of the public to discuss areas including school and health reform.

It is part of President Macron’s pledge to consult more, rather than imposing his own ideas.

It will cover issues from how to get to full employment to how France can become more independent in industrial production, food and defence, how to achieve carbon neutrality, and reform of public institutions.

The government has promised that these ideas will lead to concrete and budgeted plans.

Rentrée financial aid

Eligible families will receive their rentrée financial aid (prime exceptionelle de rentrée) to help with the costs of children going back to school. More than 11 million households will receive the money from September 15. The amount is €100, with €50 extra per child.

Changes to anonymity of sperm or egg donors

From September 1, rules will change to enable children of donated eggs or sperm to know the medical history of their donor, once the child reaches age 18.

The change comes as part of a 'bioethical' law that was voted through a year ago. The aim is to make "access to personal origins" easier. Donors must now consent to their data being shared with any future offspring once the latter reaches age 18.

Proponents say that the law represents changing attitudes towards donor ethics, and shows that infertility between couples is becoming "less shameful".

It is also intended to give children "the right to know how they came into the world", Adele Bourdelet, of the Association des enfants du don told BFMTV.

Opening of funds for collège-age students

From September 1, families can apply for funds of €105-€459 per student of collège age (middle school). 

These bourses grants are also means-tested and can be added to the prime de rentrée scolaire, which depends on a family’s income, number of children and their age.

The collège bursaries, which are paid three times a year, can help pupils with their lunchtime canteen expenses and with buying resources such as textbooks.

Further information on applying for a bourse is available on the government’s website. 

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