France opens to SA travellers
With effect from Monday, July 19, fully vaccinated residents of South Africa (and of all France’s red-and amber-list countries) are permitted to travel to France without needing a compelling reason to do so, without requiring a PCR test or any test before departure, and without having to undergo any self-isolation or quarantine on arrival in France, according to a release from A Tout France, the French Tourism Authority.
The release lists the vaccines accepted by France and recognised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) as: Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and Covishield, and any others deemed similar by the French authorities.
However, unvaccinated travellers (or visitors not fully vaccinated) from the red list countries, (including travellers from South Africa, DRC, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles and Zambia to name the sub-Saharan Africa members of this group) must:
* have a compelling reason to travel to France,
* on departure, present a negative certificate PCR or Antigen Covid test taken within 48 hours of boarding,
* take an Antigen test on arrival, and
* undergo 10 days of self-isolation, monitored by the French authorities.
From yesterday, July 21, a ‘pass sanitaire’ (health pass), will be required by people over the age of 12 years, to attend leisure and cultural venues with more than 50 people present. Until August 30, minors up to 18 years old will be exempt from this.
From August 1, this health pass will also be needed to visit cafés, restaurants, shopping centres over 20 000 sqm, long-distance transportation (aircraft, buses and trains) and hospitals. Until August 30, minors up to 18 years old will be exempt from this.
It is no longer mandatory to wear masks outdoors, excepting at gatherings, (like queues, markets and stadiums), except in some tourism areas.
Wearing a mask is compulsory in enclosed public spaces, like shops, public transport, offices for all people aged 11 and over.
Museums, theatres, banks, monuments, churches, markets, shops, cafés and restaurants, parks, gardens, forests and beaches are all open, as are the usual public services. Discotheques, hotels, hostels, tourist villages, vacation resorts and camping and caravan sites are also open.
The Eiffel Tower, reopened on July 16.