Any U.S. citizens who aren’t vaccinated for COVID-19 and want to visit France need to put their plans on hold — at least for now.
The European Union announced late last month that member states should reinstate travel restrictions such as quarantine and testing requirements for U.S. citizens who are not vaccinated against COVID-19. Following suit, the French government announced that beginning on September 12 at 12:01 a.m., unvaccinated travelers from the U.S. cannot enter France for non-essential reasons.
Here’s what you now need to know about traveling to France.
France’s government explains that beginning September 12, non-vaccinated travelers from the U.S. can only visit France for essential reasons. They also must present the negative results from a COVID-19 test conducted less than 72 hours before their departure for France, and then quarantine for seven days on arrival in France.
What is “essential” travel? The French government explains that “essential travel” includes French citizens and residents returning to France, students beginning academic studies in France, and people on business trips. Tourism, visiting family, and visiting a second home in France are not considered essential.
The good news for fully vaccinated travelers from the U.S. is that their requirements to enter France have not changed. The U.S. Embassy in France explains that fully vaccinated travelers from the U.S. will be able to enter France with proof of vaccination and a sworn statement attesting that they do not have symptoms of COVID-19 and have not had recent contact with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19.
It’s important to note that only the Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are accepted by France. Full vaccination is considered to be two weeks after the second dose of the Pfizer, Moderna, or AstraZeneca vaccine, and four weeks after the single dose of Johnson & Johnson.
A pre-departure COVID-19 test or quarantine are not required for fully vaccinated travelers from the U.S.
Know Before You Go
If you are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and are planning a trip, there is some data you should keep in mind.
First, almost 63 percent of France’s population is vaccinated for COVID-19, according to data from The New York Times COVID tracker. While an average of 11,516 daily infections was reported in France in the last week, cases have decreased by 42 percent from the average two weeks ago.
Nonetheless, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a “Level 4: Very High Level of COVID-19” alert for France due to the country’s high number of cases. The CDC bluntly cautions “Avoid travel to France.”
If you are planning a trip to France, be sure to read all of our Lyon, Paris, and France coverage. Also, since conditions are changing so quickly, be sure to stay up-to-date with all of our travel news coverage.