The UK is now on France's 'green list' which means that no compelling reason is required to travel to France (even if you are unvaccinated). The French government has also announced that from 1/4/22, you no longer need to complete a sworn statement (déclaration d'honneur) to enter France. You will still need to be able to prove your vaccination status and if you are aged 12 and over and not fully-vaccinated, you still need to submit a negative test result or a certificate of recovery (see below).
Other recent changes include:
From 14/3/22, the "pass vaccinal" and "pass sanitaire" are no longer required. These were previously needed to access bars, restaurants and ski lifts. but this is no longer the case from 14/3/22. Masks also no longer need to be worn in shops etc. they will just be required on transport and in medical establishments.
Earlier in February, the requirement for the so-called 'day 2' test on return to the UK was scrapped and the French government scrapped the requirement for a test pre-entry to France for all fully-vaccinated travellers. All children aged 12-17 who are not fully-vaccinated still need to submit a negative test (see details below).
You can read the full current travel advice to France from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office here - https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france/entry-requirements. You can read the official information (in French) here - https://www.interieur.gouv.fr/Actualites/L-actu-du-Ministere/Attestation-de-deplacement-et-de-voyage
What we know
In order to enter France, fully-vaccinated travellers aged 12 and over need to be able to show proof of their vaccination status. In order to be considered as fully-vaccinated, travellers aged 18 years and over who had their full vaccine course (e.g. 2nd dose of a two dose vaccine) over 9 months ago need to have had a booster dose, or they will need to follow the rules for unvaccinated travellers entering France. The NHS app can be used to show proof of your vaccination status. Those aged 12 who are fully-vaccinated but cannot get access to the NHS app, can download an NHS digital COVID pass from nhs.uk to prove their vaccination status.
Those aged 12 and over who are not fully-vaccinated need to show the result of a negative antigen test carried out less than 48 hours prior to departure OR a negative PCR test carried out less than 72 hours prior to departure or a certificate of COVID recovery (from a positive test carried out more than 11 days but less than six months previously, the certificate is only valid for six months from the positive test). All children aged 12-17 who are not fully-vaccinated are subject to the same travel regulations as unvaccinated adults (see above) whether or not they are accompanied by fully-vaccinated adults. Self-administered tests whose results are not certified by an approved private test provider (e.g. free tests provided by the NHS) are not valid for travel. Children aged 11 and under are exempt from all COVID travel restrictions.
Read the requirements and latest information - https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france
Returning from France
The UK's passenger locator form has been scrapped and there is no longer a requirement for a Covid test on return to the UK. Read full current guidance - https://www.gov.uk/guidance/red-amber-and-green-list-rules-for-entering-england
French ski resorts
Our resorts have been open for skiing since December. Health and safety measures to prevent the risk of COVID-19 have already been extensively tested.
The requirement for a "pass sanitaire" (COVID health pass, for those aged 12 years and 2 months to 15 years) or "pass vaccinal" (vaccine pass, for those aged 16 and over) has been lifted from 14/3/22. This was previously required to access ski lifts, bars and restaurants.
The NHS app can act as a COVID health pass to prove vaccination status if needed.
From 14/3/22, masks will no longer be required except on transport and in medical establishments.
If you test positive for COVID while you are away: Adequate travel insurance, including winter sports cover, is a vital aspect to booking a ski holiday. Insurance covers you for cancellation from the moment the policy is taken out and we require that clients have this in place. It’s important to ensure that your travel insurance will cover you if you test positive for COVID while you are away as you may need to extend your stay; without it you would then be responsible for any additional costs incurred. Many insurance policies now include cover for COVID. Read the policy terms carefully to ensure that it covers what you need. Fully vaccinated people who test positive will only have to isolate for seven days regardless of the Coronavirus variant they were infected with, but can leave isolation after five days if they have a negative antigen or PCR test result.
As with all measures, the situation is under constant review by authorities in light of the situation with the pandemic. We will therefore continue to monitor the situation closely.
Brexit - travelling to France from 01/01/21
We've summarised key points below. In the main, this will have no impact on travelling to France for holidays aside from:
- No visas will be required for UK citizens. Passports will still be required as before but they will require 6-months validity and must not be over 10 years old (you can check passport rules online). The UK has never been part of the Schengen passport-free European travel area, and therefore there have always been identity controls for UK travellers coming into the EU. This won't change and you won't see any difference in queues. You'll need to use separate lanes from those for EU/EEA/Swiss citizens.
- For those driving, an International Driving Permit will only be required if you only have a paper licence or if your driving licence was issued in Gibraltar, Guernsey, Jersey or the Isle of Man. This can be easily obtained from UK Post Offices for an approximate cost of £5.50.
- For those driving with their own car, you do not need to carry a Green Card from your car insurance company when you drive in the EU and Switzerland. From 28th September 2021, you'll need to display a UK sticker rather than a GB sticker.
- You should get a free UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) before leaving the UK (if you have a current European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) this will be valid until its expiry date). These are valid for EU countries. Travel insurance (which we have always insisted our clients have in place, as this is good practice) should also be in place as the GHIC or EHIC is not an alternative to travel insurance. You should be prepared to show proof of travel insurance for your trip on entry to France.
- Procedures for those wishing to travel with their pets will be more complicated and we would urge anyone wishing to do so to look into this well in advance of travel. Find out more about the new process - https://www.gov.uk/guidance/pet-travel-to-europe-from-1-january-2021
Any other questions?
Many questions our clients have been asking us over the few past weeks are covered on a dedicated ABTA page found here https://www.abta.com/news/coronavirus-outbreak
Peak Retreats is a member of ABTA and this helpful page provides the answers to some frequently asked questions relating to coronavirus and travel.
Our team is available to help clients on our usual office number during our office opening hours. For the time being however, we currently no longer accept holiday enquiries in person. Please call us for any enquiries relating to new bookings.