Tips & News

France Now Requires a Health Pass for Cafes, Domestic Travel and the Eiffel Tower

As of August, you'll need a health pass for many daily -- and some distinctively French -- activities.

Photo by jotily/Getty Images Pro/Canva

By Cailey Rizzo and T+L SEA Staff

Jul 27, 2021

WHETHER YOU’D LIKE TO ENJOY that distinctively French pastime of sitting in cafes, or the rather less “local” but still iconic act of climbing the Eiffel Tower, you will need to present proof of vaccination, a recent negative Covid-19 test, or proof of immunity via previous infection. 

France’s Parliament has passed a new law that will take effect in August limiting access to restaurants, cafes, planes, long-distance trains and other venues to those who have been fully vaccinated, recently tested negative or can show antibodies.

As of last week, France had already implemented the same regulations for visiting cultural sites, museums, sporting events and cinemas.

At the Eiffel Tower, which had only recently reopened to the public after a nine-month closure due to the pandemic, employees scanned QR codes for digital health passes on the country’s app TousAntiCovid. Those who weren’t vaccinated lined up for a rapid COVID-19 test, the Associated Press reported

The new bill, which is likely to affect many aspects of daily life, was extremely controversial and provoked protests across the country. Nevertheless, between the time French President Emmanuel Macron announced the proposed rules and when parliament approved them, Covid-19 vaccinations surged, with records of numbers of people getting jabs.

Macron said on Twitter that as of Monday, 40 million residents — or about 60 percent of the population — had received at least one vaccine dose, with 4 million people receiving jabs in just two weeks.

Paper or digital documents will be accepted as proof for the health pass. It will initially be required of adults only, but will expand to apply to everyone aged 12 and up on September 30. All workers in the health care industry will need to be vaccinated by September 15.

Upon its reopening to foreign tourists in June, France classed each country globally in a “traffic light” system, with entry requirements depending of country of origin and vaccination status.

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