France has announced that the country will reopen to international travellers on 9th June as previously planned, using a traffic light system to determine who can visit.
There are different travel restrictions for each group; the U.K. and the U.S. are on the amber list, which crucially only allows non-essential travel for vaccinated travelers. Additionally, all the European Union (EU) countries are rated green, meaning they can visit without any travel restrictions.
As reported in The Local, the world has been classified as:
- Green Countries: all the EU/Schengen area, plus the EU’s safe list. Presently, there are 8 countries which are on the EU’s safe list and allowed to enter freely – since 3rd June, these have been Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, Israel, Thailand, Rwanda and South Korea.
- Red Countries: these are countries where the virus is circulating and where there are some worrying variants: Argentina, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Brazil, Bolivia, Columbia, Costa Rica, India, Nepal, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Turkey and Uruguay.
- Orange Countries: every other country except those mentioned above, where the virus is under control without widespread worries of variants.
Furthermore, for each colour, there are different rules depending if people are vaccinated or not:
- Fully vaccinated travellers from Green Countries do not need to test for COVID-19. If they are not vaccinated, they will need to present a negative RT-PCR test conducted no more than 72 hours before arrival.
- Fully vaccinated travellers from Orange/Amber Countries will have to present a negative RT-PCR test conducted no more than 72 hours before arrival. If they are not vaccinated, they cannot travel, except for essential reasons. If they are still allowed at this point, they need to arrive with a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test and quarantine for 7 days (with another test on day 7).
- Fully vaccinated travellers from Red Countries can arrive in France but only for essential reasons, must have a negative RT-PCR test conducted no more than 48 hours before departure and quarantine for 7 days, with a negative test to leave self-isolation. Travel restrictions are the same for travelers from Red Countries who are not vaccinated, except they must quarantine for 10 days.
According to BFM TV, France will accept certification from one of the four vaccines already in use across the EU; Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca. As per the rules in France, people are considered vaccinated 2 weeks after the 2nd dose of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca and 4 weeks after having received the single dose of Johnson & Johnson.
France is using Pass Sanitaire, through the application TousAntiCovid- its own version of EU Digital COVID Certificate and is also providing free COVID-19 tests to tourists throughout the holiday season.
Until the unlock happens on 9th June 2021, all non-EU arrivals must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test result and are required to quarantine for 7 days.
The U.K. has put a similar traffic light system in place, allowing travel to restart from 17th May to 12 countries, altering the rules on 3rd June to take Portugal off the safe list.
Meanwhile, France has imposed stricter quarantine restrictions on arrivals from the United Kingdom.
What do you think of France’s reopening to international travellers? Let me know in the comments section below.