News Digest: Crêpes & Covid Rules

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News Digest: Crêpes & Covid Rules

France introduces the first phase of its two-step plan to relax Covid-19 restrictions, plus crêpes are on the menu for La Chandeleur. Here are the French news stories you need to know about this week.

1. France Eases Covid-19 Restrictions

While France continues tightening rules regarding vaccinations (see last week’s News Digest for the latest on the Vaccine Pass), the first phase of relaxing Covid-19 related health restrictions begins from tomorrow. From Wednesday, February 2nd, masks will no longer be mandatory in outdoor spaces, and large-scale events (which are currently capped at 2,000 attendees for indoor events and 5,000 for outdoor events) will once again be able to take place.

France also ends its compulsory ‘teletravail’ (remote working) rule, which required all eligible workers to work from home for a minimum of three days a week. Remote working remains a recommendation where possible, but it is no longer compulsory.

The second phase of lifting Covid-19 restrictions will start from February 16th and will include the reopening of nightclubs and the reopening of food stands in sports grounds and cinemas.

2. Tax-Free Interest On Savings Doubled

Interest rates on France’s popular tax-free savings account, the Livret A, have doubled from 0.5% to 1% as of today (February 1st).

All French residents have a right to open a Livret A, and the savings accounts are free from taxes and fees – you don’t need to declare it on your annual tax return either. You can save up to €22,950 in a Livret A, and there are no restrictions on withdrawals, making it a convenient option for short-term savings. However, if you’re looking for long-term savings and investment opportunities, it might be best to consider other options – read our article on savings accounts in France for more advice.

3. Pancake Day

If you live in France, don’t forget that tomorrow is ‘Pancake Day’! February 2nd is La Fête de la Chandeleur (or simply ‘La Chandeleur’) in France, and there are a whole host of traditions to celebrate the big day. Naturally, French crêpes are the star of the show, but before you break out the frying pan, be sure to read our 7 Need-to-Know Facts About La Chandeleur.

If you’re wondering what the French do for Shrove Tuesday – the day most Brits and Americans know as Pancake Day – it’s celebrated here as Mardi Gras, and crêpes often still make it on the menu. Our recommendation? Celebrate both and treat your French friends to some British or American-style pancakes on March 1st (just don’t dare to call them crêpes!).

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FrenchEntrée's Digital Editor, Zoë is also a freelance journalist who has written for the Telegraph, HuffPost, and CNN, and a guidebook updater for the Rough Guide to France and Rough Guide to Dordogne & Lot. She lives in the French countryside just outside of Nantes.

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Comments

  • bill marsano
    2022-02-01 06:19:51
    bill marsano
    No recipes? I'm all prime for La Chandeleur and NO recipes? C'est un gachis!

    REPLY

    • Zoë Smith
      2022-02-02 08:45:52
      Zoë Smith
      Sorry, Bill! How about you head over to our sister mag at Taste of France and try out some of these delicious crêpes recipes?: https://tasteoffrancemag.com/?s=crepes Bonne dégustation ! Zoe

      REPLY