Several reports have come out today (Thursday the 16th of December) detailing the new France ban of entry for British travellers. French government spokesperson, Gabriel Attal also stated that the prime ministers’ office would make an official announcement today.
Specifically, the France ban will mean that travellers from the UK will not be able to travel to France without “compelling reasons”, this does not include tourism or business travel. This ban will go into place on Saturday the 18th of December.
French citizens travelling home from the UK, their spouses, Brits that live in France, and hauliers are all exempt from this ban. However, those who have a “compelling reason” to enter France will need to follow tighter restrictions, as follows:
- All arrivals from the UK to France will need to self-isolate upon arrival. If they provide a negative covid test result, this isolation will end at 48 hours.
- All travellers to France from the UK will need to provide a negative test result taken within 24 hours of departure from the UK.
“Paris says the ‘compelling reasons’ do not include travel for tourism and business. French nationals and their spouses are exempt from the new rules,” said Sky News.
Reports stated that this France ban was a reaction to concern surrounding the number of Omicron Covid cases in the UK. These measures were put in place in order to slow down the rate of cases entering France and buy time for their vaccine booster programme to run.
“From Saturday morning, only French citizens returning from the UK, or British people living in France, will be allowed to come to France,” said the BBC.
“Travellers will have to give a compelling reason to be allowed to enter the country. People arriving from the UK will have to isolate at a location they choose, their isolation will end after 48 hours if they show a negative test.”
Concerned about how this will affect the travel industry in the UK, Brittany Ferries told the BBC, “If confirmed, these new measures could be a hammer blow to our Christmas season. In the context of an Omicron variant that is passing through the French population as it is in the UK, further border controls seem as unnecessary as they are unwelcome.”
This comes amidst talk and reports of other countries possibly tightening restrictions for UK travellers and those outside the EU in the coming months.
Greece is said to be implementing the requirement for a negative PCR test result from UK travellers from the 19th of December. Italy also requires extra Covid tests and a 5-day quarantine on arrival for all unvaccinated travellers from the 16th. Finland may require a negative test result taken within 48 hours of departure, but a set date for this rule has not yet been disclosed.
As restrictions are changing in reaction to the Omicron variant, it’s important to ensure you keep an eye on the Foreign Travel Advice page to see what restrictions your destination have in place. And don’t forget to contact your trusted travel agent if you have any queries about your destination.
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