France Imposes Stricter Travel Restrictions for Unvaccinated Arrivals From 16 EU Countries

Travellers from 16 European Union Member States who haven’t been vaccinated against the Coronavirus yet are now subject to stricter entry restrictions when travelling to France.

Updating the rules of entry from the EU and abroad, the French Government has clarified that unvaccinated travellers from the following countries now need to test for COVID-19 within the prior 24 hours before reaching France, after these countries “have been placed under surveillance”:

  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • the Czech Republic
  • Estonia
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • the Netherlands
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia

Before November 12, travellers from the majority of these countries could present the results of a PCR or antigen test certificate taken within the last 72 hours. The rule has not changed for unvaccinated travellers from the rest of the EU and Schengen Area countries that are not listed above.

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Those who aren’t vaccinated, but have recovered from COVID-19 recently, are exempt from the requirement to submit a test result, no matter from which EU or Schengen Area country they travel to France.

Minors under the age of 12 are also exempt from the requirement to be tested before reaching France.

The decision comes at a time when the majority of EU countries are facing a spike up in the number of COVID-19 cases in their territory, in spite of the high vaccination rates throughout the block. Even the EU health agency, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (EDCD), had recommended less travel to these countries.

On November 12, France has also removed Ukraine from its green list and added it to the red list of countries.

This means that non-vaccinated travellers, and those who haven’t recently recovered from COVID-19, can travel from Ukraine to France only for absolutely essential purposes. The same are obliged to present test results of a PCR or antigen test taken within the last 48 hours before reaching the country. Upon arrival, the same are also subject to a ten-day quarantine period.

However, vaccinated travellers and those who have recently been ill with COVID-19 can enter by only proving their status, including for non-essential purposes like tourism, and without being subject to quarantine obligation.

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The decision to add Ukraine to the red list follows a recommendation of the EU Council to the Member States to impose more restrictions on Ukrainian travellers upon an increase in the number of COVID-9 cases in this country.

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