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For the past few years, France has maintained its position as the world’s number-one tourist destination for several reasons, including its sheer diversity and ease of access from both short and long-haul markets.

There is something for every type of visitor, from skiing to beach holidays and countryside retreats to cultural city breaks. France is also home to some of the world’s most iconic monuments, and of course, French cuisine and wine has a reputation all of its own.

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Can British travellers go to France?

France is currently on the UK’s amber list, which means those arriving in the UK must self-isolate for 10 days. All travellers from amber list countries must book PCR tests to take on day two and day eight after arriving in the UK.

Those arriving into England may qualify for the test to release scheme, which will end the 10-day quarantine period early in the event of a negative test on day five. Travellers will still need to take their last PCR test on day eight.

The government currently advises against leisure travel to amber list destinations.

Travel to France
The French government implemented a traffic light system on June 9, and the UK is currently on France’s amber list.

Those travelling to France from amber list countries who are not fully vaccinated must only travel for essential reasons and must complete a form confirming this. The form can be found here.

Non-vaccinated travellers also need to show proof of a negative PCR test taken 72 hours before, or a negative antigen test, taken 48 hours before. They must also sign a sworn declaration that they are not suffering from any symptoms and haven’t been in close contact of anyone with Covid-19 in the past two weeks. Arrivals must also self-isolate for seven days in France, and take another PCR test at the end of this period.

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Travellers who are fully vaccinated (two weeks after the second dose of Pfizer, Moderna or AstraZeneca; one week after the single dose of Johnson & Johnson; or two weeks after the single dose of any of the four vaccines, if the traveller has previously tested positive for Covid-19) must show proof of a negative PCR test taken 72 hours before, or a negative antigen test taken 48 hours before. Fully vaccinated travellers do not need to prove an essential reason for travel, or self-isolate on arrival.

Travellers who are not fully vaccinated will also need to have an essential reason to leave France, if their country is on the amber list, like the UK. Fully vaccinated travellers do not need to do this.

For more detailed information about travelling between the UK and France, click here.

Travel within France
A curfew from 11pm to 6am is currently in place across France. Leaving home and travelling around is prohibited during curfew hours, with a fine of €135, and more in the event of a repeat offence. Public transport is still running to meet the needs of key workers.

Travel during the curfew period is only permitted in the following cases, and upon presentation of an authorising certificate:

  • To go to a place of work, training, or exercise.
  • For medical appointments that cannot be provided remotely, or to purchase medication.
  • For compelling family reasons (eg to provide assistance to a loved one).
  • Upon judicial or administrative summons.
  • To carry out a public service.
  • For people with disabilities and their carers.
  • In rail or air transit for long-distance trips.
  • To take your pet out within a one-kilometre radius of your home.

What plans are in place for France to reopen to tourism?

France is very much looking forward to welcoming British visitors again. The relaunch of tourism in France depends mainly on the respective government announcements on restrictions in both countries.

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We are continuing to follow the advice and recommendations set out by the French government and health authorities.

How can British travellers reach France?

The capacity and frequency of flights, trains and ferries to France has been severely impacted. However, there are still flights operating to more than 35 destinations in France from 15 airports across the UK. Both Eurostar, Eurotunnel and ferry operators are still ensuring the UK has very good connectivity to France.

What safety measures are in place across France?

Wearing a mask is compulsory in enclosed public places across the country for anyone aged 11 and over. This rule may be extended to any other places deemed relevant by local authorities, depending on the area’s health situation. Detailed information is available from the individual prefectures here. The map and updated information on the prevalence of Covid-19 in France are available on the French government website here.

Wearing a mask is also compulsory in outdoor public spaces, as well as on public transport, in taxis and ride shares. Travellers should ensure that the greatest possible distance is maintained between passengers or groups of passengers not travelling together. More information is available on the SNCF and RATP websites.

For indoor shops, markets and museums, the capacity is one person per four square metres. Outdoor seating in restaurants has returned to full capacity, but limited to tables of six. Indoor seating is now permitted, but only at half capacity.

Gatherings of groups of 10 or more are prohibited, with the exception of tour groups.

Cinemas, theatres and circuses can hold 65% capacity.

For more information on the Covid-19 situation across France, click here.

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Pictures: Shutterstock

Last updated June 10, 2021

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