Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Paris and France in lockdown

The outbreak of Coronavirus - Covid-19 - classed as a pandemic on the 11th March 2020, has made its way across all the world and affected many countries and lives.

This is an unprecedented situation where precautions have been put in place to help slow the spread of the virus. Below we have been covering the main headlines for those interested in how France and Paris are acting. Our thoughts are with those who have lost family or friends and those who are affected.

17th March 2022

Since the 14th March 2022, France has changed its rules for Covid restrictions.

Wearing masks are no longer mandatory within classrooms, businesses, public services, and offices.  However, they must still be worn when using public transport, visiting care homes and hospitals, or other health services.

Meanwhile it is no longer required to show your proof of vaccination to enter a gym, restaurant, theatre, or other venues, or to board a train.  Despite this, unvaccinated people must still show a recent negative test or prove recent covid recovery to enter care homes and hospitals, or other health services.

Yet with the easing, there have been concerns about the rate of infections, and it is still very important to be careful and take precautions.

As this now stands, we are bringing the broad EUtouring coverage to a close. If you wish to travel to France, we strongly recommend you check official governmental advice for current regulations, documents you may need and to seek the correct course of action.

We wish everyone to stay safe and well, from all the EUtouring Team.

16th December 2021

From 11pm Friday, France is restricting UK travellers visiting its country. Those travelling must have a compelling reason, such as visiting family - but those travelling for tourism or business would not be allowed.

Additionally, there must be a negative Covid test within 24 hours, and once in the country to quarantine for a week. Although this can end after 48 hours if a second negative test is presented in this time.

As always, we strongly suggest reading official governmental advice if you have any plans to travel.

15th December 2021

A French Governmental spokesman has stated that France has not reached the peak of the country's fifth wave. This comes after the spread of the new Omicron variant which has started to spread throughout the country.

This has brought in new entry requirements such as anyone travelling outside of the EU - Including the UK - will require a negative Covid test result within a 48 hour window. This applies to everyone no matter their vaccination status. Separate rules apply for returning visitors from France, and we recommend those in this situation to seek information on their official governmental websites as this can change at a moments notice.

From last week, nightclubs in France were ordered to close for at least four weeks, in a hope to reduce Covid cases increasing. Alongside this, schools had mandatory face masks plus stricter social distancing measures put in place, and employers have been advised to set up working from home where possible.

As mentioned previously, France still enforces the "pass sanitaire" required to enter many venues and public spaces, including Christmas markets. This also takes into an account for Booster jabs, where they are mandatory for eligible people in France who wish to keep their pass sanitaire valid after January 15th. If a person's previous booster jab (or confirmed case of Covid) was longer than seven months ago then the pass sanitaire will not be valid.

7th September 2021

Both the UK and France are on each other's "Amber" list, meaning there are a variety of regulations and rules to follow if visiting the country.

For those visiting France, fully vaccinated arrivals will need to provide proof of their vaccination status, along with a 'sworn statement' (déclaration sur l’honneur), to certify you have not had any Covid-19 symptoms or been in contact with any confirmed cases.

For those who are not fully vaccinated, only those with essential travels reasons are permitted, with an International Travel Certificate stating as such. Additionally, a sworn statement as mentioned above will also have to be provided and a negative PCR or antigen test within 24 hours of departure. Lastly there is a requirement for self-isolation for 7 days with another PCR test at the end of this period.

In return to England from France you are required to take a Covid-19 test 3 days before you return, to book and pay for second test upon your arrival (before day 2) and to complete a passenger locator form. For those not fully vaccinated on return you are required to quarantine at home for 10 days and to take another Covid-19 test on or after day 8.

It is also worth noting that there are on-going protests in multiple French cities over the newly implemented "pass sanitaire" that restricts access to public spaces and services for those not fully vaccinated. We would strongly advise caution and to avoid these situations where possible.

3rd August 2021

France stays on the UK Amber+ list, meaning that even for those who are double vaccinated, you must still quarantine on your return.

On the French rule set, for those who are not fully vaccinated they require a negative test within the last 24 hours before arrival - though those who are fully vaccinated do not have to do this. For those requiring tests they can have costs attached and vary depending on the test used.

Rules in France stay in place for masks to be used in all enclosed public spaces, along with gatherings, queues, markets, stadiums and all public transport.

For events and spaces of more than 50 people, you are required to present a "pass sanitaire". From the 9th August, some forms of transport, services and venues (including restaurants, museums, bars and cinemas) hospitals and retirement homes through France will also require this pass to show their Covid-19 status.

More information for what qualifies for the "pass sanitaire" please visit the Government's website and keep up to date with local information from all countries involved before and during any travels.

28th June 2021

Various restrictions in France have been changed following lower daily case numbers alongside an increase in vaccinations in the country.

From the 20th June the curfew was lifted, after being present for two thirds of a year. Alongside this the easing of mandatory mask wearing requirements have changed; It is no longer compulsory to wear masks outside. Though it is still required in crowded outdoor locations like that of markets and stadiums, as well as indoor public locations and public transport.

Caution is still being advised and for people to act in a safe manner while out and about.

At the end of the month, it is planned for events to be able to run at full capacity for fans who can present proof of a negative Covid test or are fully vaccinated - Named a "Health Pass" either in a digital or paper format. This is of course subject to change if conditions change with concerns over new variants.

As always, we recommend checking the latest information from local and governmental advice and information.

27th May 2021

In France from the 19th May cinemas, museums, theatres, galleries, outdoor zoos and non-essential shops were allowed to re-open although with a limit of visitors based on different factors such as limited seats and based on venue size, alongside strict social distancing and hygiene.

We suggest that if you plan to visit anywhere to check and book in advance as reports are showing that places have been fully booked.

The previous curfew has also been changed. It now begins at 9pm, instead of the previous 7pm and continues until 6am the next day.

That being said, it may not be easy for those outside of France to visit. France is currently listed as amber in the UK government traffic light system, meaning that you should not travel there.

Additionally, France also requires proof of a negative PCR test within the previous 72 hours. From 31st May visitors from the UK must also quarantine for seven days.

Again, we strongly recommend checking the latest information with governmental advice and information.

1st April 2021

The previous lockdown that affected 19 distracts has now been extended to all of France from Saturday, 3rd April. You can read more of this from our previous update.

On top of this, schools are planned to close for at least 3 weeks, where remote learning will take place instead, this includes two weeks of spring holidays. Classes for children of key workers will remain open.

As always, we strongly suggest that those affected check local and governmental advice.

19th March 2021

France has announced a new lockdown, beginning from midnight of 19th March 2021.

This is set to last for four weeks and covers 16 departments of France. During this time only stores and shops selling essential goods may remain open which includes bookstores and school will remain open.

People can exercise within 10km (6.2 miles) of their home but travel outside of the region is not permitted without a compelling reason.

The curfew has been adjusted with the changing of daylight hours and is now from 7pm daily from the 20th March.

As always, we wish everyone to stay safe, and recommend that those seeking further information check the French Government website at the following address.

4th February 2021

Since the start of February, France has limited travel into and out of their country across all borders and travel types - sea, air and land.
While this includes the UK, a minister has clarified that haulers transporting goods to and from the UK wouldn't be affected.

Those who are still required to travel must show a document that has a "compelling reason" for entry, which can be seen at the following address and to present a negative test.

Additionally, some extra measures have been brought in place within France:
- Non-food shopping centres with an area larger than 20,000 square meters are to close.
- Increased police presence to monitor people and gatherings are following the 6pm-6am curfew.
- Working from home is strongly encouraged.

Unfortunately, it is said that 400 malls and 25 thousand businesses are affected by the new closures.

12th January 2021

France continues to battle Covid-19, with daily curfews still in place starting at 8pm - starting at 6pm in some departments of the country - to 6am the next day.

Cultural venues like that of theatres and cinemas continue to stay closed at this time, until at least the end of January.

As always we urge everyone to stay safe, only travel if it is essential and to follow the Governmental guidelines from the website below.

11th December 2020

From the 15th December 2020 the stay at home order will be lifted in France. Sadly though, the French Government have stated that they are not at the end of the second wave, and they had not reached objectives they had set for the 15th.

Due to this a new curfew is being put in place: daily 20:00 - 06:00.

Additionally museums, cinemas, theatres and sport venues have had their opening dates pushed back another three weeks.

Bars and restaurants will stay closed until at least 20th January 2021.

This does mean from this date that people can travel across the country once more.

The curfew will be waived for Christmas Eve. Families will be allowed to celebrate Christmas, but with a maximum of six adults altogether.

Although, the curfew will stay in place for 31st December - New Years Eve - where the virus could spread more.

7th December 2020

Paris, and France, continues to stay in a lockdown until the 15th of December. The future challenges and specifics about how things may re-open is still being considered in ways which will be appropriate to keeping everyone safe and well.

Although sadly, the Paris Airshow is just another cancelled event, with Disneyland Paris also pushing back its reopening until at least February.

For some good news, hotels such as the Hotel Avenir Montmartre, have been housing homeless people during the epidemic, securing safety and working closely with a charity to help those in need.

29th October 2020

It has been announced that from 30th October 2020, France is going into a new lockdown. This is expected to last until December 1st at the earliest.

This is similar to the previous lockdown from March, where all people wishing to leave their homes must have a form classed as an Exemption Certificate stating their reasons, and they should only leave for essential work or medical reasons.

Compared to before, what is different this time, is that public services plus factories and schools will remain open for the benefit of the economy and children's educations. Although adjusted measures state that children from the age six and up will be required to use a face mask.

As always, we urge people to visit the governmental websites and local news for information tailored to them, during these unprecedented times.

16th October 2020

From Saturday, 17th October 2020, Paris is among 9 cities in France that will be enforcing night-time curfews to stop the spread of the virus.

Paris and its suburbs, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Rouen, Grenoble, Toulouse and Montpellier, will all be enforcing a curfew from 9pm to 6am the next day. All businesses, public services and locations are expected to be closed by this time and people should be in their homes. This is expected to last at least four weeks.

Those who must still travel for trips to the hospital or pharmacy are still permitted, and one must have a special certificate to show for proof. Pre-booked trains and planes which arrive after curfew are also allowed in this situation.

Outside of these locations public gatherings have also been restricted, with parties, weddings and more banned in public spaces.

We would like to continue to wish everyone the best of health during these difficult times.

5th October 2020

Unfortunately, due to the rise in cases throughout France there are many areas classed as within an Alert Zone, with places such as Bordeaux, Lyon, Toulouse, Rouen, Nice and Montpellier being under High Alert. In these places gyms have closed, public gatherings are limited to 10 people, with local fetes and student parties being prohibited.

However, Marseille and Paris along with the departments on the outskirts of the city including the departments of Hauts-de-Seine, Seine-Saint Denis and Val-de-Marne are now classed as Critical Alert Zones and the above restrictions are in place along with others.

From Tuesday, 6th October 2020, the alert level in Paris is being raised to its maximum level after cases have risen over recent weeks and the following regulations have been put into place for at least two weeks in addition to those above:

All bars will shut from Tuesday.
While restaurants and bistros can remain open, they must adhere to new sanitary arrangements and must close before 10pm.
It is strongly advised for those who can, to work from home.
University lecture halls must be under half full.
Wearing a mask is mandatory in enclosed public spaces and outside in some areas and towns including Paris, Marseille and Lyon.

The French Government has more information on which exact departments are under alert zones and their levels, we suggest that anyone living or travelling within France to check the Government website for the latest news and status.

We wish everyone well and to stay safe under these new guidelines.

16th September 2020

In France, recent weeks have brought more cases of Covid-19 - also known as Coronavirus - where there is a rise in cases being reported in comparison to prior months. Restrictions are still in place as previously mentioned, with a vast number of departments being placed on "red alert" where restrictions are tighter to help stop the spread of the virus.

We strongly suggest those who are currently there or are required to travel to check local and governmental advice from the official French Government at the link below.

For those who may wish to travel for leisure, we would strongly recommend trying to travel at a safer time, for both you and your family's health and for everyone's sake. Do not forget to please carefully check for the regulations that are specific to your country, such as any quarantine procedures, travel requirements, etc.

12th August 2020

Fears of a second wave are approaching in France, where new rules have been put in place. Namely masks are required in enclosed public spaces and must be worn outside while in busy areas of Paris by anyone aged 11 and up.

The bans on mass gatherings of more than 5,000 people has been extended.

We recommend everyone to take precautions and to be safe if and when they travel, to help prevent the rise of infections.

23rd July 2020

More locations listed below have their doors open to visitors once more. Each location will have its own rules and regulations, varying from face coverings, amount of people within a building through to only accepting card payments or bookings in advance - with this in mind we still strongly recommend looking ahead of time before visiting.

La Cinematheque
Musee Rodin
Musee Picasso
Musee Eugene Delacroix
Musee Grevin
Musee de la Poste
Musee du Quai Branly
Grand Rex

13th July 2020

While the virus is more under control it is still vital to remember to maintain social distancing, wash your hands regularly, and wear face coverings when possible, as the French health minister reminds everyone to not let down their guard.

For updated news in Paris the following locations and services have now since re-opened:

Musee des Arts Decoratifs
Musee Nissim de Camondo
Grande Arche
Palais Garnier
Petit Palais
Grand Palais
Bateau Mouches
Les Invalides

6th July 2020

In France from the 22nd June, all schools - excluding high schools - reopened. Schools named "Lycees" for 15 to 18-year-olds have also started to reopen but students are not required to attend. Cinemas were also another venue that has seen its doors open once more, with beaches also being open under tight restrictions.

Since our last update multiple notable locations have also started to open their doors once more. Including that of:

Tour Montparnasse
Saint-Denis Basilica
Musee d'Orsay
The Eiffel Tower
Cite des Sciences
Pompidou Centre
Musee du Louvre

Care must be taken when visiting places and we highly recommend you contact locations first as each venue may have its own regulations in place for bookings and visitors.

19th June 2020

With the easing of restrictions taking place all over France, many locations have started to re-open. Although some of the below places are now open, we still highly recommend checking in advance.
Many places only allow prior reservations, a certain amount of people at once, and social distancing is still being enforced.

These locations are now open once more:

Arc de Triomphe
Les Catacombes de Paris
Musee Jacquemart-Andre
Musee des Arts Decoratifs - gradual re-opening
Musee Nissim de Camondo
Palais de Tokyo
Palais de la Porte Doree
Chateau de Fontainebleau - Gardens only
Chateau de Versailles

We will continue to provide updates as Paris and the country slowly returns to the "new normal" and allow visitors once more.

16th June 2020

From the 15th restrictions in France have been eased up further. Mainland France is now within a "green zone" virus alert level, while overseas territories stay at "orange".

Cafes and restaurants can now re-open, including indoor seating in Paris if social distancing is still followed.

Family can visit loved ones in retirement homes once more, which will be a welcome change for many.

For those travelling, the borders are now open, but those travelling from the UK or Spain are being asked to go into a two-week voluntary quarantine upon arrival. For the UK mandatory quarantine is still required when returning.

From 22nd June schools would be allowed to reopen, except for high schools.

2nd June 2020

As of today, France has entered its Phase Two of easing restrictions. A large majority of France is now within a Green zone, Paris is now within an Orange zone.

Under Phase two you will find that bars and restaurants can re-open within green zones, but within the orange zones it is outside dining only. This has been a popular change for many who are now taking their chance to enjoy the nice weather and be outside once more.

Additionally, parks and gardens in Paris are once more open, allowing for more space to exercise or for gatherings fewer than 10 people at a time.

26th May 2020

France continues to be split into the previously mentioned green and red zones. Paris at this time is still within a red zone, meaning parks gardens and schools for 11-18-year olds are closed.

Residents no longer must provide travel certificates of their journeys or where they intend to go for trips up to 100km (62 miles). Longer journeys meanwhile still require a certificate.

Shops have been allowed to reopen (except for Paris shopping centres), as can leisure centres and cemeteries.

Restaurants and bars remain closed at this time.

As always it is recommended to check in advance with local and governmental information as this situation develops.

12th May 2020

France has started to slowly ease its lockdown and will continue to do so over the next few weeks. This is mainly split into two regions, classed as green and red zones, dependant on how many covid-19 cases are within a region.

Currently, Paris and its suburbs, are within a red zone. For now, this means public gardens and parks will remain closed.

For areas that are within green zones, it means primary and nurseries opened on 11th May, schools for 11 to 15-year-olds from 18th May, and 15 to 18-year-olds not opening before June.
Meanwhile in Paris, schools reopening are prioritised to socially disadvantaged children and the children of key workers.

In green zones, cafes and restaurants may be allowed to open "as early as June".

Face masks are being enforced on public transport.

9th April 2020

Unfortunately, as of 9th April the number of COVID-19 cases in France has risen to over 73,000 cases, with over 20,000 of these being in Ile de France and the French President has announced a complete lockdown in Paris with outdoor exercise also banned to try and control the spread of Coronavirus.

And sadly, as of writing this update, within the country, there has been over 8,500 deaths. Our thoughts are with the many friends and families of those affected.

18th March 2020

As of 18th March, France itself has seen over 7,730 confirmed cases of Covid-19, with 2,100 being in the Ile-de-France region. Due to this the French Government has now banned people from leaving home without a specific reason, such as for specific work situations, and all non-essential establishments are now closed.

However, the lockdown is continuing and even more stringent rules are in place with fines applicable for those that do not comply, as unfortunately the number of cases of Covid-19 has risen in France to over 25,000 as of 25th March 2020, with over 6,500 in Ile de France region and a terrible 1,000 plus deaths within the country.

The measures the French Government have taken, is to restrict movement to stop the spread of the virus. This means that without due certificates or reasoning for leaving your place of home/residence, you can be fined €135. The French Government has the information to print out, along with more information, valid reasons and an FAQ at the above website.

16th March 2020

As of 16th March, the French President has now announced that ALL non-essential places are to close on a temporary basis due to the Coronavirus, which has been classed as an epidemic in France, and this means places such as libraries, gyms, leisure centres, sports venues, shopping malls, clubs, bars, cafes, restaurants, etc, even though some establishments can do home deliveries but are unable to accept guests.

In addition, we have had reports that all schools, colleges and child care centres are also being closed from Monday 16th March 2020 for a minimum of two weeks.

When it comes to hotels in Paris, buffet breakfasts have been banned and current recommendations are for in room food services only, with any hotel bars and restaurants only open to guests staying at the establishment and meals provided filmed individually, although this could change with even more stringent measures put in place.

We will continue to update this information, but for more details of Paris events or locations that may be affected please see the official Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau website with their news and updates.

Another point is that although Paris public transport is still running, there are fewer trains and the Metro also has a reduced service, plus as you have probably already heard, many flights have been cancelled.

So as you can no doubt appreciate, please plan any travel and events responsibly and safely, and check in advance with the hotel or venue itself if anything is closed or if you wish to ask for refunds.

8th March 2020

As of writing this, France itself has seen 2,500 cases of Covid-19, with 500 being in the Ile-de-France region. Due to this the French Government has banned public gatherings of more than 1,000 people.

Therefore as we stated earlier, all non-essential places are closed and hence multiple Paris venues, events, shows, museums, tourist attractions, etc have either cancelled or postponed many events or temporarily closed due to the pandemic and some of these include...

- Eiffel Tower - Closed
- Disneyland Paris - Closed
- Louvre Museum - Closed
- Musee d'Orsay - Closed
- Musee de l'Orangerie - Closed
- Chateau de Versailles - Closed
- St Patricks Day Parade - Cancelled
- France-Ireland VI Nations - Postponed until October
- Moulin Rouge - Closed
- Chateau de Fontainebleau - Closed
- Paris E-Prix - Postponed until October
- Musee Eugene Delacroix - Closed
- Paris Half-Marathon - Postponed until September
- Grand Palais Exhibition - Postponed
- Musee Jeu de Paume - Closed
- Harlem Globetrotters - Postponed
- Paradis Latin - Closed
- Les Invalides - Closed
- Musee de l'Armee Exhibition - Postponed
- Theatre de l'Odeon - Closed
- Vertical at Eiffel Tower - Postponed until September
- Theatre des Champs-Elysees - Closed
- Pompidou Centre - Closed
- Cite des Sciences - Closed
- La Cinematheque - Closed
- Paris Bridal Fair - Postponed
- Paris Manga Sci-Fi show - Cancelled
- Catacombes de Paris - Closed
- Maison de Radio - All performances cancelled to April minimum
- Comedie Francaise - Closed
- Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris - Postponed to October
- Paris Tattoo Convention - Cancelled
- Musee Picasso - Closed
- Musee Rodin - Closed
- Musee Jacquemart-Andre - Closed
- BNF (Bibliotheque National de France) - ALL sites Closed
- Palais de la Porte Doree - Closed
- Institut du Monde Arabe - Closed
- Musee des Arts Decoratifs - Closed
- Musee Nissim de Camondo - Closed
- Palais de Tokyo - Closed
- Musee Cluny - Closed
- Tour Montparnasse - Closed
- Saint-Denis Basilica - Closed
- Arc de Triomphe - Closed
- Palais Royal - Closed
- Sainte Chapelle - Closed
- Pantheon - Closed
- Chateau de Vincennes - Closed

Numerous shows at Paris venues have also been cancelled or postponed to future dates. Some of these venues include...

- AccorHotels Arena - Bercy Arena
- Olympia
- Opera de Paris
- Philharmonie de Paris
- Salle Pleyel
- Zenith Paris
- Bataclan
- Grand Rex
- Opera Bastille
- Grande Halle la Villette
- La Cigalle
- Dome de Paris - Palais des Sports
- Theatre de la Ville
- La Seine Musicale
- Stade de France

However, please look online first before trying to contact a place by telephone as there are limited resources for any company and the influx of calls to certain establishments has also been problematic to the telephone companies, hence hindering emergency services, etc.

Sources:,, RATP, SNCF, Routers, Paris local, BBC News