Bristol is beautiful. I don’t know if the people who live here really understand just how beautiful this city is.
As a newcomer from South Africa I am blown away by the old buildings, the art gallery, the university, the parks and gardens. So thank you Bristol, and thank you to all my new friends, I could not feel more welcome if I tried.
Onward ever onward
There are three guarantees in life. Tax, change, and death.
This journal is mainly about change. I will pay the tax that I am obliged to pay and not begrudge Caesar what is due to Caesar. Death will find me. when it finds me. But until it does I will be elusive, fit, and as alive as a bee in a bottle.
At 81, and having moved a number of times in my life, from Pretoria to Kempton Park, back to Pretoria, back to Kempton Park, to Kensington in Johannesburg, high on the ridge, to Knysna, I was not daunted by the prospect of moving to Bristol in the UK. A slightly longer jump to a totally new environment and country, but just another move. Another change.
The transition from the idealistic dream of being a pastor and preaching the gospel to laying bricks and building homes, may seem extreme but in reality it is simply the manifestation of life. The nub of that being the fact that God laughs when we say we are planning to do whatever we are planning to do. In retrospect it seems that I was destined to build stuff. Either houses, or additions to houses, or the complete rebuilding of houses, or businesses. A. lawnmower repair business,
Let’s put it this way.
After particularly grim weather the evening before I made a point of putting up an Ad for Dad’s Garden & Landscaping company. This after delivering a pizza to their door in a howling gale. One that inched open ever so slowly to frame the smiling face a Dad’s very cute daughter handing me a two pound coin.
So to answer your question; are you expected to tip? No it is not expected.
But does it make a difference. Hell yes! It does. Tipping is not expected in the UK in the way it is in other countries. All staff in the UK, must by law, be paid at least the National Minimum Wage…wada…wada….wada
After a bleak winter lockdown there are some welcome signs of the changes to come.
First come the snow drops
Arundel rises out of the Sussex water meadows, turreted castle walls and the Catholic Cathedral dominating the skyline. Built on a steep hill, quaint bric-a-brac shops and tea rooms line the narrow streets.
If you are thinking of moving to Arundel it is home to a small community. There are no large supermarkets, malls or chain stores.
It is a small country town.
There are two very good primary schools and St Philip Howard’s Catholic Secondary in Barnham. The town is on the London Victoria Line with easy access to Bighton, Portsmouth, Southampton and Chichester. Otherwise there is no public transport and a car is necessary.
Uk courier work. To all interested parties.
Please note information i give is not advice per se but based on personal experience and may not be 100% accurate and up to date.
Serves only as guideline. There may be ommissions errors etc and not liable at all if there are any. JUST BASIC GUIDELINES.
If have code 08 lic as i knew it (all veh types including automatic) then can do simple direct exchange for British lic. Forms normally available at all post offices. See what it looks like in attachment photos ive taken for you (available if you email me ).
NB ALWAYS SEND IN ON “A TRACKED TO BE SIGNED FOR” BASIS. AS THIS ONLY WAY TO BE ABLE TO PROPERLY FOLLOW UP ON PROGRESS OF REQUEST TO EXCHANGE LICENSE. COST CURRENTLY £44/5 .
Depending on age will be valid until you 70. Remember to change / amend uk lic if move etc. Most times can be done on line. Please see these links.
If have heavy duty license ( which i had) then can do exchange but will get uk car lic with a “learners ” license for hd.
(I never did the hd here as was fresh out battling to survive etc. However i did research the probability and costs to do it).
This affectively means you would need to be trained to do an actual heavy duty license test by dvla. This training available through many various private companies. Avoid the ones that say can pass within 3/4 weeks. They normally dodgy. This hd training takes approximately 3/9 weeks if done properly. Costs can vary from approximately £2000 to £6000. Is important this course if hd needed as you do need to know the laws of hd driving here.
Courier work: (OPEN TO MALE OR FEMALE FROM ANY BACKGROUND WITH VALID LICENSE ETC)
REMEMBER WILL NEED IN TRANSIT INSURANCE IF USE OWN CAR/VAN WHICH KNOCKS YOUR PROFITS).
You will need to register as SELF EMPLOYED. Have obtained a ni number(available through tax offices normally or on line or telephonically) and preferably a tax number (but not crucial as the companies if reputable will help you get one. Different forms of taxation here available. Self employed. Enployed. Self employed/employed. Those 3 are the most common for self employed work. Yes can have the combination of self employed /employed). However you must get clued up in that area later but asap so dont pay double tax on tax that’s been deducted already at source.
Please remember most self employed contracts are based on “zero hours” contracts! Zero hours workers have unfortunately very little representation in the employment field for their rights as workers.
(HOWEVER GIVES YOU LOTS FLEXIBILITY RE WORK. IN MOST CASES CAN WORK IN OTHER FIELDS BUT NOT ALWAYS SAME FIELD SIMULTANEOUSLY.)
So always good to get written contracts stating exactly what is expected by you re hours, availability, etc and what company will pay you and WHEN AND HOW. Remember there is also an arrears payment due to you depending on when you start. Thats paid out if you leave company or only do short term work for them after you leave will get paid the last amount sometimes 2/4 weeks after leaving.
If any company offers you physical cash payments you know they dodgy. Avoid them like the plague.
Zero hours contracts must be read carefully over and over before accepting them and signing them. Avoid verbal zero hours contracts.
Most all companies will teach yoi normally how to use their equipment if new to the industry.
There may be a charge for the scanner which normally can be paid off. Costs vary around £75/150 if contracting privately.
If can work for company directly its better in my opinion as they tax you at source and you dont have to save tax and ni one side out of payments/wages.
However always still put a little into savings account separately in case company makes bugger up with tax/ni. Or tax man deems you not paid enough for any reason but always check that before just paying taxman extra. They renowned for also making tax blunders here.
Never be late with tax returns.
Big penalties for that! Start at £100 and upwards with big interest.
There are many forms of courier work .
Some examples are:
Self Employed sub contracting directly to the large courier companies ( ps dont always need a van. Could get away with a long estate 5 DOOR CAR. SMALL CARS ARE NOT ACCEPTED BY THEM ANYMORE IN MOST CASES). Would suggest you keep strong records of number of parcels you deliver (in most cases you get paid per number of parcels delivered. If you dont achieve the expected quota then get paid far less per parcel. However normally its achievable). Watch out for caveats in contracts. I did this work directly with a company and would be my preferred choice if i was able to work as driver again. NB AVOID LEASING VEHICLES FROM COMPANIES AS YOU JUST DONT MAKE PROFITS AND YOU END UP NORMALLY WITH BIG COSTS HAVING TO PAY FOR MINOR SCRATCHES AND BUMPS ETC.ETC.
HOWEVER SAME APPLIES TO WORKING DIRECTLY WITH A COMPANY- DO DAILY CHECK LIST THOROUGLY ON EVERY VEHICLE ALLOCATED TO YOU TO AVOID SIMILAR PENALTIES. DO NOT ACCEPT TO DO A QUICKIE RUN WITH DIFFERENT VEHICLE. IT CAN BE DETRIMENTAL IF NO CHECK DONE ON VEHICLE, FOR YOU LATER.
The company i worked for i was “employed” and had a shift system. So for example you work 6 hour shift but needed to do extra work for them outside of that shift you would get paid more (ie overtime) but only on certain days / shifts do you qualify for overtime. Not all is considered over time due to the zero hours contract.
Also if finished shift early they will let you go home on full pay if they dont have other “runs” to do. Ps most companies allocate a post code run to each courier whether emoloyed or sub contacting directly or indirectly. However flexibility is paramount as they may ask you to do someone elses run for many various reasons. Always query why the extra run in another post code far from your run!
Sub contracting to a sub contactor that contracts to the large companies. Me personally i would avoid them. If need more info on that will supply separately via above email.
BEING A HOME BASED MINI DEPOT IS A CONSIDERATION BUT LOTS OF LEGALITIES INVOLVED WITH NEIGHBOURS AND NEIGHBOURHOOD ETC. BUT I’VE SEEN SOME OF THEM VERY SUCCESSFUL BUT BLOODY HARD WORK. So again i would avoid until more exposure gained and knowledge obtained. Also break in risk by opportunists which could cost you big if no insurance.
MAKE SURE YOU KEEP CLEAN LICENSE AND DONT GET PENALTY POINTS AGAINST LICENSE. NO MATTER HOW MUCH YOU NEED JOB TO DRIVE TO MAKE MONEY DO NOT BE PUT UNDER PRESSURE TO BREAK ROAD LAWS. IE TRAFFIC LIGHTS / SPEEDING/ JUMPING LANES ETC ETC BY THE COMPANIES “PLEASE DO THIS QUICK RUN QUICKLY FOR US” APPROACH.
YES AGREE BUT MAKE NO PROMISES AS THE COMPANY HAS PROBABLY NOT KEPT TO THEIR TIME SCALE OF DELIVERY AND RISK HAVING TO PAY THE SENDER/ CUSTOMER BACK THE DELIVERY CHARGES UNDER THEIR UNDERTAKINGS THEY MAKE FOR ALL CLIENTS. That is no fault if yours as a courier driver.
Always fill in time sheets correctly. Always sign in /out keys and petrol cards for refuelling and best done after your run completed before next day if sure same vehicle will be allocated to you. Theres lots of preferential stuff that goes on but you get used to it if can live with silly pedantics.
PS ON RUNS WILL BE EXPECTED TO DO COLLECTIONS TOO IF THERE ARE ANY TO BE FORWARDED TO OTHER AREAS FROM WITHIN DEPOT YOU WORK OUT OF OR FOR.
This also includes picking up parcels for return to sender for a host of reasons. Be sure that they on your pick up list.
Basically systen works like this if all goes well with any one parcel:
Parcel collected. Has bar code label attached. Scanned into central system there and then on collection.
Taken back after run to depot. Scanned in again by receiving dept off your van.
Confirms to central computer parcel not lost or mislaid.
End of your responsibility if sytem ok.
Vice versa every parcel you take out is scanned onto your vehicle on your personal scanner. All parcels are packed into van in reverse order of delivery. Ie last delivery packed in first until first delivery at back of van or side door depending on size and volume of packages. ( YOU SIGN A DISCLAIMER BY THE WAY RE HEAVY PARCELS. CANT REMEMBER THE MAXIMUM WEIGHT SORRY.)
Always check nothing late come in for your run before leaving with office responsible for your run.
Never clock “start” of your run from warehouse until you actually start driving out of warehouse or outside warehouse. In contract their are normally bonuses etc but is affected by your start time on leaving warehouse. Your scanner is tracked at all times if scanner DOESNT go down (ensure fully charged scanner supplied to you at all times or major problems and paper work to be done on run getting signatures and making notes etc.)
If all goes well then every parcel scanned off vehicle at client home or business and they sign on scanner. That reports to central system parcel delivered.
In some cases parcels can be left with neighbours or “safe” places clients have nominated in event they out however check instructions on scanner or parcel /paperwork. Always take a trip sheet out with you in case scanner crashes.
(PS CERTAIN COMPANIES MAKES THEIR COURIERS DOWNLOAD THE DELIVERY APP ONTO THEIR MOBILES. IE THEY CAN EVEN TRACK YOU AT NIGHT WHEN OFF. I DIDNT LIKE THAT IDEA. THATS INVASION OF MY PRIVACY IN MY OPINION).
Many items may not be signed for by a minor for obvious reasons that parcel could contain something they shouldn’t see or come into contact with. It might even be a surprise gift FOR that child that parents dont want their child to know about yet. So be careful of that.
So you go on until all parcels delivered.
You then return to depot.
On return clock your return time on scanner. All vehicles subject to inspection on leaving and returning as security measure. On returning your vehicle also inspected for damages!!
Then if all clear you report back to office. (REMEMBER IN MORNING TO LIST YOUR OUTGOING MILEAGE ON SPEEDO AND ON RETURN ON TRIP SHEET BEFORE GOING TO OFFICE. ALWAYS CENTRAL LOCK VEHICLE AT ALL TIMES!!)
At office get a “all clear” on your scanner and they should reset it for next use by next courier or yourself and be put on charge. There are special codes allocated every day to every scanner and normally different code every day.
Without that code you cant do your job.
If told to start work for example at 7am SUGGEST you there 30/45 minutes before that to try get same vehicle and scanner etc etc..
I’ve tried to cover all the stuff i learnt and pass onto you
It may not be 100% accurate and correct now but should help you get basic insights into the courier work.
If i think of anything else i will pop another post.
www.katsgoneglobal.com/moving-to-the-uk found on Google
www.girlabouttheglobe.com/we-went-solo/making-move-abroad-moving-uk/ another off Google
Emsworth is a picturesque coastal village on the northern reaches of the Chichester Harbour Conservancy. Possible one of the most pleasant places to live in either Hampshire or West Sussex. Either, because the County border lies slightly West of the village centre. With the result, some of us fall under Havant and the others in Chichester. So you might end up in one or the other depending on where you end up.
It used to be a fishing village that was well known for local oysters and boat building in the early 1900’s and it has grown into a well- adjusted waterside village that has retained it’s charm. With a local harbour and marina that are protected by Hayling Island on one side and Thorney Island to the other it is still popular mooring with recreational sailors and local fisherman.
There is a quaint selection of small independent shops. Bakers, barbers, a hardware shop and two of the inevitable antique shops. As well as the local fish & chip takeaway, the village supports a variety of pubs, restaurants including 36 On the Quay, a recognised foodie destination.
There is a regular train service running from Portsmouth and Southampton through to Chichester with links to both London Waterloo, London Victoria and Brighton. The 700 bus also operates between Chichester and Portsmouth.
You do not need an international driving permit to drive in the United Kingdom. Foreign driving licences are valid for up to a year after first arriving in the UK after which it is necessary to either exchange it or pass the DVSA’s UK driving test.
But if your original licence does not come with an English translation it will be useful in proving that the licence is valid.
As I understand it, to exchange your licence, if you qualify, you have five years to do this but can only continue to drive for the first twelve months. Strictly speaking you need to have been living in Great Britain for at least 185 days before being considered eligible as permanently resident. After which you can apply to exchange your old licence and replace it with a UK licence.
But in practice I have heard of many instances where people have managed to get their new licences earlier. An anomaly I wouldn’t take a chance on. In the UK you learn to queue patiently without question. You are expected to follow the rules and regulations which you deviate from at your own risk.
if your licence was issued in Gibraltar, Jersey, Guernsey, Isle of Man or a ‘designated country’ you are eligible to exchange your licence without having to sit the DVSA’s UK driving test. Designated countries are considered to have similar standards and have an agreement with the UK. These include Australia, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Falkland Islands, Faroe Islands, Hong Kong, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland and Zimbabwe.
If you have an EU or EEA licence you can drive in the UK until agged 70 or your licence expires. If you’re aged 68 or over when you officially become a resident in Great Britain, you’ll be allowed to drive for 3 years. Once this time has passed, you will need to exchange your licence.
Prior to that however you are entitled to exchange your EU or EEA licence for a UK one at any time if you might wish.
If you have an EU licence that was exchanged for a licence from a non-EU country that is not on the list of designated countries it won’t be eligible to exchange and you will need to sit the DVSA’s test.
To start the process go to https://www.gov.uk/exchange-foreign-driving-licence.
You order form D1 from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). This will be posted to you
Complete the form and send it back with the prescribed fee, your old driving licence and the required documents. A passport number for a valid UK passport is sufficient for identification purposes. Otherwise if you do not have a UK passport you must enclose an original identity document such as a current and valid foreign passport, a biometric residence permit (BRP) issued in the UK, a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) national identity card, a travel document
If you do not have an EU or EEA passport, you’ll need to send in a visa that proves you have permission to live in the UK.
Photocopies or laminated certificates won’t be accepted.
You should get your new licence within 3 weeks.