The French government has declared that from Friday, France will lift its travel restrictions on those travelling from the United Kingdom. Travellers who have been vaccinated will no longer require a compelling reason to enter France and will not be needed to self-isolate once they arrive.
However, all the people travelling to France will have to take a negative Covid test 24 hours before leaving the UK. Jet2 reported a sharp increase in airline bookings to ski destinations as a result of the announcement. The news has been well received by both vacationers and the travel industry.
Travel industry rejoices
Eurostar said it would boost the number of its trips in the coming weeks due to the new changes, while Brittany Ferries said it was a huge relief. Christophe Mathieu, boss of the ferry company said,
I can only hope that we have seen the last border closure of the Covid crisis. Thousands of Brittany Ferries passengers have been disrupted and millions of pounds in income has been lost as a consequence of draconian measures like border closures.
According to travel data, around 17 million British citizens visit France each year. It is one of the most popular holiday destinations in the UK. ABTA confirms,
Thousands of people head there for ski breaks at this time of year, so this will be a huge relief for customers with holidays booked there for the next few weeks, who have been waiting anxiously for news.
We are still waiting for more details from the French government on entry requirements such as the rules that will apply for children. Travellers should continue to monitor the Foreign Office travel advice.
On December 18, France imposed the limitations in an attempt to stop the spread of the Omicron variant. However, with the change Jet2 has confirmed the resumption of flights to French ski resorts, with the company's CEO noting that,
This is the positive news that skiers and snowboarders have been looking forward to, and the spike in bookings for ski flights has been both sharp and immediate.
France strengthened its limitations earlier this month, requiring people to work remotely and restricting public gatherings to indoor events. Long-distance eating and drinking are prohibited, cafés and bars can only provide table service, and nightclubs are closed. Non-vaccinated people are still required to have a compelling reason to enter France and must isolate for 10 days upon their arrival. The French Senate approved a contentious bill on Thursday, requiring people to be fully vaccinated to access a variety of places, including bars and restaurants. It also eliminates the option of presenting a negative test to get entry.