English TV in France (Important to note that in 2014 things are constantly changing therefore until things settle down some information may not be correct)
English TV in France!
Most people bring their UK TV with them when they move to France, this is ideal for most uses and as the first priority is often to receive UK TV it will enable you to that with a Free-to-Air (FTA) digital receiver and Satellite Dish.
However, if you intend to purchase a new TV and bring it over to France then you should take certain issues into consideration. Firstly, that French TV's, unlike most UK TV's are compatible with most European systems, Secondly, if you purchase the TV in France and something goes wrong then it is covered by guarantee. If you choose the right make it can be up to 5 years onsite. I personally recommend considering using local supplier who will normally install it for free, he is also available if something goes wrong as part of the service.
France uses a transmission system known as SECAM L, the UK uses PAL-I, if you wish to receive French terrestrial TV which has six stations broadcasting throughout the country: TF1, France 2, France 3, Canal Plus, M6 and Arte then it may not be possible with your UK TV through an an Ariel, however, it is not problem as there are other options to view French TV see options "French TV" below. Click Here for link
Use SKY Digibox, Freesat or Free-to-Air (FTA) box!
UK TV in France is available using a SKY Digibox, Freesat or Free-to-Air (FTA) box via the ASTRA 2 Satellite. The ASTRA 2 Satellite's broadcasts all the (FTA) channels, which are open for anyone to receive, this includes all the free SKY and Freesat channels. Therefore receiving BBC and ITV in France is no problem also all English Radio stations. Channel 4 & 5 are now available on most receivers, it may be necessary to re tune the box, you will then be able to get these channel free of charge.
UK TV WITH SKY DIGIBOX: All the (FTA) Channels are available without a card Channel 5 is available with a Freeview card. This is not a subscription card but a one-off payment card. (It is now possible to get Channel 5 without a card by tuning the SKY Box manually see details below). If you wish to subscribe to Sky then there are many companies that offer this facility or alternatively you can subscribe via an English address. A lot of people continue their UK subscription to SKY and bring the card and SKY Box with them when they move to France. People often ask why they can I not purchase a card in France? The principle reason is that SKY does not have a license to operate in France, therefore it is effectively illegal to have a SKY subscription package in France and if SKY find out that you are using a subscription package in France they have an obligation to switch it off immediately canceling the contract.
How to view CH5 for free on a SKYBOX: To get ch5 it needs to be programmed into your receiver as an “other channel”, which is quite easy using Frequency =10.773, Polarity = H and Rate = 22000. Click here for full explanation.
UK TV WITH FTA BOX: The FTA Box's are available in France from Electrical Retail outlets, the price is usually in the region of 150.00€(Aquitaine Computers can supply FTA Box's), FTA Box's are often confused with the Freeview Box's that are available in the UK and France The French ones are easily identified as they have TNT on the packaging and only cost about 40.00€ they use standard TV Ariel FTA Box's are connected to a Satellite Dish. (See below for details on TNT)
UK TV WITH FREESAT BOX: The Freesat Box has been set up by the BBC and ITV as an alternative to SKY. When you purchase the box it includes a one off subscription to the service. They work of the same satellite as the other services therefore if your dish is tuned in correctly you will be able to plug it in and away you go. The advantage of the Freesat Box is because of the one off subscription more channels are available. These Boxes are easily available in the UK, prices vary so shop around for the best deal.
If you are purchasing a house in France and it was previously owned by English people then the Satellite will probably be aimed at Astra 2, if it was previously owned by French people then the Satellite will probably need to be realigned to the Astra 2 Satellite. This is not a big job for a competent person, and should not cost a lot of money.
What's on TV: One of the best ways is to visit the Yahoo website TV section it has full listing of UK TV programs and a lot of news about your favorite TV programs.
Why is the signal not a 100%?