France axes Covid-19 testing requirement for fully vaccinated UK travellers from today

Martin Lewis urges holidaying Brits to check EHIC before travel

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Fully vaccinated British travellers will no longer have to take a coronavirus test before departure when travelling to France. The news was announced on Twitter today.

Guillaume Bazard, France’s consul-general in London, announced the change on Twitter, and said: “As of February 12, tests will no longer be necessary for travellers with a complete course of vaccination heading from the UK to France.”

The country considers anyone who has received their most recent dose within the past nine months as fully vaccinated.

Children under the age of 12 years old are exempt from the requirements.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) states: “Fully vaccinated travellers aged 12 and over must continue to provide:

“Proof of vaccination and a sworn statement self-certifying you’re not suffering from COVID-19 symptoms and haven’t been in contact with confirmed cases in the 14 days prior to travel.”

It added: “France will accept the UK’s proof of COVID-19 recovery and vaccination record at the border.

“The French Government recognises any vaccination certificates which conform to the EU Digital Covid Status Certification framework, illustrating that you are fully vaccinated with a vaccine authorised by the European Medical Authority.”

Those entering the country must have had their final vaccine dose administered at least seven days prior to travel for Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna or 28 days after a single dose of Johnson & Johnson.

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However, unvaccinated Britons need to have a “compelling reason” to travel to France.

They will also need a negative test carried out less than 48 hours before departure to the country.

Unvaccinated travellers may also be subject to a random test on arrival.

Anyone who tests positive will have to isolate themselves.

The news has been welcomed by those wishing to head off for a break over the February half-term holidays.

Cross-Channel train operator Eurostar said more than 125,000 people were booked to travel between the UK and the continent during the holiday.

The move comes just days after Spain announced it will drop its entry requirement for passengers aged 12 to 17 from non-EU countries, such as the UK, to be fully vaccinated.

The UK also recently eased its rules for arriving travellers which removed all testing requirements for eligible fully vaccinated arrivals.

Travellers only need a Passenger Locator Form now.

Arrivals who are not recognised as fully vaccinated will only need to take a pre-departure test and a PCR test on or before day two after they arrive in the UK.

Children aged 12 to 15 in England will be able to prove their vaccination status or proof of prior infection through the digital NHS COVID Pass from February 3 for outbound travel.

Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, said: “We made the right calls at the right time and thanks to our vaccine and booster rollout it’s paying off – allowing us to safely remove nearly all COVID-19 travel restrictions for vaccinated travellers.

“We already have one of the most open economies in Europe with the least restrictions, and because of the changes today we now have a travel sector to match it.

“This final step in our stable and safe full return to international travel is a major boost for UK tourism, setting Britain free ahead of the crucial half term and spring holiday season.”

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