Local news sources in France reported on Tuesday that the EU nation will drop all Covid testing requirements for fully vaccinated travelers that are currently in place by next week.
The change will affect all international arrivals aged 12 and over to France from outside of the European Union and Schengen Area, which includes those arriving from the UK as well as the United States and Canada.
Europe minister Clément Beaune made the announcement, stating that, “We again required tests in December over the Omicron variant. In the coming days we will announce that tests are no longer needed for vaccinated people.”
“This week there will probably be a new European protocol for vaccinated people arriving from outside the EU, with eased measures,” she added.
Current Travel Restrictions For France
At this time, all international visitors aged 12 and over coming from the U.S., Canada and the UK who wish to travel to France must show a negative Covid test result taken no later than 48 hours from arrival.
This travel entry requirement currently applies to all fully vaccinated arrivals from those countries on France’s “orange” list.
What About Unvaccinated Travelers To France?
Under the current guidance, unvaccinated persons are allowed to enter France for essential reasons only. Those travelers will have to present a negative Covid test taken no later than 48 hours from arrival, and 24 hours from arrival if you’re coming from the UK.
If you’ve arrived in France for essential reasons but are considering unvaccinated, you will not be able to access a number of services such as bars, restaurants, museums and long-distance trains.
Booster Dose Needed For France’s ‘Vaccine Pass’
And according to the latest updated travel rules for France, you are considered unvaccinated if you haven’t received a booster dose of the Covid vaccine after 270 days of having completed your full course (two or one dose, depending on the brand) of an accepted Covid vaccine for travel to France.
Following the guidance for the booster jab will allow you to get France’s “vaccine pass” to access most services.
To clarify, the official government website states that, “Since February 1st, 2022, in order to continue to be considered as fully vaccinated, persons aged eighteen or over wishing to enter the national territory must have received a dose of complementary messenger RNA vaccine no later than 9 months following the injection of the last required dose.”
This requirement is becoming more common in destinations throughout Europe, as well as parts of the United States.
Portugal And Greece Among Other EU Nations Removing Entry Requirements
This week’s travel update comes with other EU Member States who’ve recently relaxed their entry requirements for fully vaccinated international visitors.
Earlier this month, the EU countries of Portugal and Greece both scraped their negative Covid test requirements for all international arrivals who’ve been fully vaccinated against Covid. As two major travel destinations, this came as good news to fully vaccinated travelers. We’ll keep you updated on which country is next.
Other Countries Easing Travel Restrictions And Bans
Just last month, the nation of Norway removed its quarantine requirements for unvaccinated arrival. Testing requirements for entry will still apply to both unvaccinated and vaccinated travelers, however. The neighboring nation of Sweden recently removed all of its internal vaccine passports and mask mandates, citing a shift to a more living with the virus approach.
And, after international borders being totally closed off for also two years, Australia is scheduled to reopen its borders to fully vaccinated travelers from February 21st.
If you’re planning a trip to France, check the official government page for the latest travel entry requirements before your travels.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com