News Digest: France Ends Pre-Departure Covid Tests for Vaccinated Travellers



News Digest: France Ends Pre-Departure Covid Tests for Vaccinated Travellers

There’s relief for vaccinated travellers planning a trip to France this week as testing rules are lifted, plus more changes to France’s national Covid regulations. Here are the French news stories you need to know about this week.

1. No More Covid Tests for Vaccinated Travellers

We announced in last week’s News Digest that France had extended the 24-hour window for pre-departure Covid tests for UK travellers. The good news is that France has now dropped the need for pre-departure Covid 19 tests entirely. This applies not only to travellers from the UK but from EU countries, the United States, and all other green and orange countries.

These new rules came into effect on Saturday, February 12th. Vaccinated travellers over the age of 12 will still need to show proof of vaccination (including a booster if necessary) and a sworn statement (déclaration sur l’honneur) as before. See the rules for travelling to France here.

2. Vaccine Pass Changes Come Into Law

France’s Vaccine Pass came into effect on January 24th, but today (February 15th) marks the introduction of even stricter rules regarding the pass. From now on, the maximum timeframe in which to receive your booster vaccine in France is four months – shortened from the original seven months – in order to maintain access to the Vaccine Pass.

If you do not receive your booster within the four-month timeframe, your Vaccine Pass will automatically be deactivated. You can reactivate your Vaccine Pass at any time once you have received a booster vaccine. Note that if you have already received a booster vaccine, this does not apply to you – as it stands, you do not need to get a second booster jab, even if your booster was received more than four months ago.

From today, there are also no more exemptions for those receiving their first vaccinations. Those getting vaccinated for the first time will now need to follow the two-shot vaccination programme and wait seven days after the second dose in order to access the Vaccine Pass.

3. Phase 2 of Lifting France’s Covid Restrictions

Tomorrow (February 16th) marks the second phase of the lifting of France’s national Covid-19 health restrictions. The relaxed rules already include an end to outdoor mask requirements, and they will now include:

  • No more restrictions on eating in cinemas, sports venues, and public transport. You may now remove your mask to eat or drink at these indoor venues.
  • The reopening of nightclubs, concerts and gigs.
  • Cafés and bars can now resume bar service (previously, the rules stipulated table service only).

From Monday (February 21st), primary school children in France will follow level 2 Covid protocols (instead of level 3), meaning no more masks outdoors, no limitations on social interactions outside of their class, and the return of indoor sporting activities.

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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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  • Harry Holmes
    2022-02-18 10:43:56
    Harry Holmes
    Zoe, Thank you for the pharmacy in CDG. Is there one in the Marseilles airport that activate for Americans fully vaccinated and boosted that can activate the QR code? Thank you. Harry


  • Harry Holmes
    2022-02-15 10:24:18
    Harry Holmes
    Is there a pharmacy where we can receive the French vaccine pass in DeGaulle airport upon arrival from the USA? We have received both vaccine shots and the booster.


    • Zoë Smith
      2022-02-17 11:43:40
      Zoë Smith
      Hi Harry. You can search for pharmacies here: and yes, there is one at CDG. It's called Pharmacie Bonassoli - here's the link:
      Be sure to check the opening hours as it closes over lunchtime and is closed on Sundays and Mondays.
      Best of luck for your travels!


  • Donald A Nunn
    2022-02-15 07:04:51
    Donald A Nunn
    What does "... will still need to show proof of vaccination (including a booster if necessary) mean? I keep reading about French entry requirements, but no one ever explains the booster situation. I am unaware of any exemptions from the Booster requirement. Do I have to get it in order to get into France? I have been double vaccinated. That is enough. I refuse to get a Booster. Does that mean I will never again be allowed to enter France? Au revoir France!


    • Zoë Smith
      2022-02-17 12:23:44
      Zoë Smith
      Hi Donald, Yes according to the rules laid out by the French government (which you can see here - in french - a booster is required after 9 months to be counted as 'vaccinated' for entering france.
      The British guidelines for travel to France state "Travellers aged over 18 and one month who had their full vaccine course over 9 months ago and have not since received a COVID-19 vaccine booster must follow the rules for unvaccinated passengers to enter France.
      The current rules for unvaccinated travellers depend upon where you are travelling from but you may need to have an Essential Reason for travel.
      Hope this helps clarify things! Best regards, Zoe