Traveling to France during Covid-19: what you need to know before you go

If you plan to Trip in France, here is what you need to know and expect if you want to visit during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The basics

France has some of the toughest Covid-19 restrictions in the world. Although it reopened to visitors in the summer of 2020, the country has been quarantined twice since then, and is now reopening provisionally from a less restrictive third lockdown.

What’s on offer

The historic boulevards of Paris, the fashionable sweep of La Croisette in Cannes and the lavender fields and vineyards of Provence. France remains one of the most sustainable tourist destinations in the world.

With delicious food, even better wines, landscapes and cities to satisfy all types of travelers, it never disappoints.

Who can go

Travelers from Australia, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, as well as EU countries can enter provided they submit a negative result to the Covid PCR test -19 performed within 72 hours of departure and a statement that they do not have symptoms of covid.

Cross-border workers are exempt from the compulsory test.

At present, those from all other countries must have a “compelling” health, family or professional reason to justify their visit. The UK was added to this list on May 31.

France has introduced a sanitary pass (“sanitary pass”) which stores digital versions of users’ vaccination certificates, proof of a negative PCR or antigen test performed within the past 48 hours, or proof of a recent recovery from Covid (provided they tested positive more than two weeks ago and less than six months ago).

The pass, accessible via the French Covid-tracker TousAntiCovid app or as a QR code, has been approved for use for summer travel from July 1.

Paper versions of documents will still be accepted, along with photo identification.

The move comes as seven member states, Bulgaria, Czechia, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Croatia and Poland, deploy Covid-19 digital certificates, allowing EU travelers to move freely in member countries.

It is still unclear when France’s health pass will be extended to international tourists, but authorities have said it will be at some point.

What are the restrictions?

Travelers entering France from countries outside the EU for compelling reasons are invited to spend seven days in quarantine in a place of their choice.

The list has been extended to other family situations so that couples and parents separated between France and abroad can travel to visit each other and / or their children.

People arriving from French Guiana, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, India, South Africa, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Turkey, United Arab Emirates , Bahrain, Colombia, Costa Rica and Uruguay must present a negative PCR test. taken at least 36 hours before travel and subject to a 10-day quarantine.

From May 31, anyone arriving from the UK will need to be quarantined for seven days due to concerns over the Indian variant, which is spreading rapidly in the country.

What is the situation of the Covid?

France is one of the hardest hit countries in Europe, with more than 5.7 million cases and nearly 110,000 deaths as of June 4.

Cases were skyrocketing earlier in the year, with 117,900 new cases reported on April 11. But the numbers have dropped significantly since then, with 15,684 cases reported on June 3.

However, the situation remains critical, with lingering concerns about hospital capacity.

Authorities stepped up France’s vaccination campaign in response to the increase in cases in April. On April 6, the Stade de France, the largest stadium in the country, was transformed into a huge vaccination center, and at least 39 similar centers have opened in the country since then. More than 37 million doses of vaccination have been administered in the country as of June 4.

France relaunched its test and traceability application in October. AllAntiCovid is available for iPhone and Android devices.

What can visitors expect?

France is again in national containment on April 3 due to a sharp increase in coronavirus cases.

However, President Macron has since established a roadmap to carefully ease restrictions in the country, and some measures have already been lifted.

Domestic travel restrictions were lifted on May 3, meaning residents are now allowed to travel to the country again.

The nationwide nighttime curfew, which went into effect on January 16, was shortened from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. on May 19.

Primary schools and nurseries reopened on April 26 after being closed for three weeks, while high school students resumed indoor classes on May 3.

Outdoor restaurants, cafes and terraces reopen for outdoor service on May 19, with a maximum of six people per table, and non-essential stores will also reopen.

Spectators are allowed to return to the arenas, and museums, monuments, theaters, auditoriums with a seated audience can reopen with a maximum capacity of 800 people indoors and 1,000 outdoors.

Gyms can reopen from June 9, while indoor dining will resume in restaurants and cafes, with no more than six diners per group.

From then on, residents will be able to use the health pass, which stores proof of vaccination, negative PCR tests or evidence that the user has recently recovered from Covid-19, to attend stadiums and major events. .

The national curfew, which must be pushed back from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. from June 9, will be completely lifted on June 30.

Masks must be worn at all times on public transportation and in enclosed public spaces.

Useful links

Official website of the French government

Advice for foreigners wishing to travel to France

All Anti-Covid app

Official Covid-19 Notice

Our last blanket

Learn more about how France has imposed new Covid-19 restrictions and how feminist street art becomes commonplace around Paris.

In other developments, the European country passed a law protect the “sensory heritage” of its rural areas and its future for sleeper trains looks brilliant. Want to know what it feels like to try to become French? CNN Channon Hodge tried back in 2008.

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About Guillermo Russell

Guillermo Russell

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