IMMIGRATION GUIDE in the COVID-19 CONTEXT

16 September 2021

Can I enter France? Shall I present a PCR test? Can I apply for a visa? What documents shall I present upon entry? Will I be subject to quarantine?

In the current COVID-19 context, all these questions are frequently raised and can cause a lot of confusion for travellers. Regulations change regularly, but this guide aims at answering the questions in light of the situation as it is as we write.

A new set of measures has been put in place from the 17th of July 2021. From this date the French authorities will reduce the restrictions to enter France for travellers who can provide a proof that they have received one of the vaccines recognized by the authorities.

Are admitted by the French authorities the vaccines recognized by the European Medicines Agency:
Janssen, Pfizer / Comirnaty, Moderna, AstraZeneca / Vaxzevria/Covishield.

The vaccination schedule is considered complete 28 days after the administration of a dose for Janssen vaccine and 7 days after administration of a second dose for other vaccines.

1. What are the countries with open borders with France?

Since the 9th of June, traveller have been divided into 3 categories according to their country ofdeparture.

Travellers entering France from another European country are allowed in with no restriction linked to Covid-19. This covers the following countries:

✓ Other European Union Countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus,
Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy,
Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia,
Slovenia, Spain and Sweden
✓ EFTA countries & European microstates: Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway,
San Marino, Switzerland

Some countries in the European area have been placed under surveillance. For unvaccinated travellers from Cyprus, Spain, Greece, the Netherlands and Portugal, a negative PCR or antigen test of less than 24 hours is required.

Travellers from Australia, Bahrein, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Hong Kong, Japan, Jordan, Lebanon, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Ukraine, Uruguay, Union of Comoros and Vanuatu are not subject to a compelling reason to enter France.

Please note that not all these countries are part of the Schengen Space, thus depending on nationality of traveller, a visa may be needed to cross borders.

All the above-listed countries are referred to as “green countries”.

The countries in which a variant of interest has been observed will be considered as red countries. Are currently considered as such: Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Georgia, Indonesia, Iran, Maldives, Morocco, Mozambique,
Namibia, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Seychelles, South Africa, Suriname, Tunisia, Turkey.

All the countries not mentioned in one of the above categories will be in the amber category.

2. What are the compelling reasons that authorise to enter in France?

Travellers from amber countries which are not vaccinated with one of the vaccines recognized by the French authorities will be submitted to the list of compelling reasons:

✓ French or EU nationals and their family
✓ Third-country nationals holding residence permit and having their residence in France => this excludes first arrivals after issuance of the D visa
✓ UK nationals and their family who benefit from the withdrawal agreement, police at the borders and British officials discharging their duties, border police officers and customs officers, Channel Tunnel staff
✓ Third country nationals holding a long stay visa for family reunion or refugee family reunification, beneficiaries of subsidiary protection and stateless person
✓ Transiting travellers, flight, cargo, train, bus or vessel personnel, international carriers of goods
✓ Diplomatic or International organizations staff working in France.
✓ Foreign healthcare workers supporting the fight against Covid-19.
✓ Students with proper visa & proof of address in France
✓ Teachers and researchers employed or invited.
✓ Third country national with a « Passport Talent » long-term visa (VLS) and their family.
✓ Travellers in transit for less than 24 hours in an international zone.

The list of compelling reasons is further restricted for all travellers from countries on the red list:

✓ French citizen, and their family.
✓ EU nationals and their family whose main residence is in France.
✓ Third-country nationals holding residence permit and having their residence in France => this excludes first arrivals after issuance of the D visa
✓ Citizen of a third country holding a long-stay visa issued for the purpose of family reunion or reunification of refugee families, beneficiaries of subsidiary protection and stateless persons.
✓ Land, sea and air transport sector workers or transport service providers, including drivers of vehicles carrying goods intended for use in the territory, as well as those who are only in transit, or travelling as passengers returning to their home base or for training purposes.
✓ Diplomatic or International organizations staff working in France and their family.
✓ Travellers in transit in the international zone for less than 24 hours

3. What documents  need to presented when entering?

Vaccinated Travellers from all country vaccinated need to present

✓ a proof of the vaccination status.
✓ a sworn statement of absence of covid symptoms and of any contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19 dated and signed*.

Travellers not vaccinated with one of the vaccines recognized in France, will have to present different proof according to their country of origin:

Travellers entering France from one of the countries on the green list shall present at the border with:

✓ a certificate of recovery older than eleven days and less than six months or a negative PCR or antigen test not older than 72 hours before departure.
For travellers from Cyprus, Spain, Greece, the Netherlands and Portugal, a negative PCR or antigen test of less than 24 hours is required
✓ a sworn statement of absence of Covid symptoms and of any contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19 dated and signed*.

Travellers entering from a country on the amber list (see question 1) shall present at the border with:

✓ a negative PCR test taken less than 72 hours prior to departure or a negative antigen test taken less than 48 hours prior to departure.

For travellers from the United Kingdom a negative PCR or antigenic test taken less than 24 hours prior to departure is required.

✓ a sworn statement of absence of Covid symptoms dated and signed*.
✓ a sworn statement to undergo antigenic or screening test upon arrival in France, dated and
signed*.
✓ a sworn statement to remain under self-isolation for 7 days upon arrival in France and to take
a biological virological screening at the end of the isolation period, dated and signed*.

Travellers entering from a country on the red list observed (see question 2) shall present at the border
with:

✓ a negative PCR or antigenic test taken less than 48 hours prior to departure.
✓ a sworn statement of absence of Covid symptoms and of any contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19, dated and signed*.
✓ a sworn statement to undergo antigenic or screening test upon arrival in France*.
✓ a sworn statement to do a 10 days quarantine organise by the authorities upon arrival in
France*
✓ Proof of home address or proper accommodation (hotel or equivalent), specifying, where applicable, how control officers can gain access to confirm compliance with the quarantine or isolation measures, except in cases of isolation in an accommodation facility provided by the administration (territorial isolation support units have been set up to assist isolated persons) or of transit in an international zone

*Those documents are available on:
https://www.interieur.gouv.fr/Actualites/L-actu-du-Ministere/Attestation-de-deplacement-et-de-voyage

4. What types of applications can consulates process now? In which origin countries?

Consulates in all countries can issue all types of visas to France, vaccination situation will determine if travel is possible toward France.

In red countries, proof of complete vaccination schedule is required before applying for the visa.

5. When is a test needed? Is quarantine required upon arrival?

✓ France requires negative PCR test or antigenic test to be presented at the airport before boarding by all travellers aged 12 and more not vaccinated
✓ Travellers from the amber list who are not vaccinated will be required to self-isolate for seven days on arrival.
✓ All people traveling from countries under the red list will be tested upon arrival in France.
✓ Travellers from countries from the red list who are not vaccinated will be required to do a 10-day quarantine organized by the authorities.
✓ When it is not possible to get PCR test before travelling, one shall obtain an exemption from the French consulate in their departure country.
✓ They will be tested upon arrival and will be sent to a place identified by the authorities to self-isolate for 7 days.

Important: Passengers in transit staying in the sanitary zone of the airport and remaining in transit in France for a maximum of 24 hours do not need to present a PCR test to the French authorities. They will need to comply to requirements of the final destination country only.

6. What about the curfew/lockdown/health pass?

In accordance with the European rules, to limit the transmission of the virus has been put in place in France the health pass (= passe sanitaire).

The health pass is the presentation digital or by paper of one of the following proofs:

✓ Complete vaccinal schedule.
✓ a negative PCR or antigenic test taken less than 75 or 48 hours.
✓ a negative PCR test confirming recovery of Covid-19 between 11 days and 6 months old.

It is now requested for the bellow places:

✓ Professional seminars of more than 50 people not within the company premises.
✓ Health, medical and social establishments (except for emergency situation).
✓ Long distance travel (interregional) by flights, TGV, Intercity and night trains, buses.
✓ Restaurant, bars, terraces.
✓ Stores and shopping center of more than 20 000m2 according to local prefet decision.
✓ Cinemas, theater, sports and culturals show, conferences rooms, exhibition halls.
✓ Open-air establishments, including zoological, attraction and theme parks.
✓ Stadiums, sports facilities, swimming pools, sports halls.
✓ Casinos, game rooms and bowling alleys.
✓ Monuments, Museums.
✓ Libraries, media libraries (except university and specialized libraries, BPI).
✓ Sports competitions.
✓ Other events, cultural, sporting, recreational or festive, organized in public space or in a place
open to the public and likely to give rise to a control of the access of persons.
✓ places of worship for events not having a cultural character.
✓ Ships and boats, such as cruise ships.
✓ Discotheques, clubs and dance bars.
✓ Outside festivals, from a total of 30 stands or attractions.

It is possible to request the conversion of a proof of vaccination done abroad into a french health pass.
https://www.demarches-simplifiees.fr/commencer/passe-sanitaire-etrangers

Summary Tab

Green countries:
Member States of the European Union as well as Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland and the Vatican; Australia, Bahrein, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Lebanon, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Ukraine, Uruguay, The United States, Union of Comoros and Vanuatu

Proof of VaccinationCompelling reasonNegativ result to a
covid-19 Test
before boarding
Test upon arrivalQuarantine
YesNoNoNoNo
NoNoLess than 72h
before boarding
24h for Cyprus,
Spain, Greece, the
Netherlands and
Portugal
NoNo

Orange countries:
All countries not mentioned in green or red list.

Proof of VaccinationCompelling reasonNegativ result to a
covid-19 Test
before boarding
Test upon arrivalQuarantine
YesNoNoNoNo
NoYes – see list for
orange countries
Less than 72h
before boarding
24h for United
Kingdom
Random antigenic
test
Self-isolation 7 days

Red countries:
Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Georgia, Indonesia, Iran, Maldives, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Russia, Seychelles, South Africa, Suriname, Tunisia, Turkey.

Proof of VaccinationCompelling reasonNegativ result to a
covid-19 Test
before boarding
Test upon arrivalQuarantine
YesNoNoNoNo
NoYes – see list of
compelling reason
for red countries
PCR or antigenic
test done less than
48h before boarding
Antigenic test
mandatory
Quarantine of 10
days controlled by
the authorities

Useful links:
https://reopen.europa.eu/fr/
https://www.interieur.gouv.fr/Actualites/L-actu-du-Ministere/Attestation-de-deplacement-et-de-voyage
https://solidarites-sante.gouv.fr/soins-et-maladies/maladies/maladies-infectieuses/coronavirus/toutsavoir-sur-la-covid-19/article/flyers-a-destination-des-voyageurs
https://media.interieur.gouv.fr/deplacement-covid-19/
https://www.gouvernement.fr/en/coronavirus-covid-19

SANTA FE IMMIGRATION SERVICES

Your immigration contacts at Santa Fe Relocation, France are :

Aurélie Vasseur
Immigration Manager France
Santa Fe Relocation France
T: +33 1 80 38 31 26
E-mail: Aurelie.vasseur@SantaFeRelo.com

Sarah Laalayli
Immigration Specialist
Santa Fe Relocation France
T : +33 1 80 38 31 35
E-mail: Sarah.laalayli@santaferelo.com

The information contained in this guide is current as of 16th of September 2021 and is offered for information purposes only. Nothing in this guide is intended to nor should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise offer any advice which is capable of being relied upon. Santa Fe does not and is not able to guarantee the outcome or approval of any particular immigration application.

This guide contains information on topics which are subject to legal, governmental and/or regulatory rule and authority. No warranty, representation or any other assurance is made that the content of this guide is true, accurate and complete. Law and regulation, especially concerning rules related to immigration and visa policy or availability, remains subject to change on short notice and constantly evolves over time.

The information provided in this guide is, at best, of a general nature and is not intended to nor should be relied upon as a substitute for the advice of an appropriately qualified professional and/or competent government authority with specialised knowledge who can apply it to the particular circumstances of your case.

Please contact a Santa Fe immigration expert with any queries you may have relating to your specific immigration related matter. Neither the individual authors, Santa Fe or any employee, agent, director, shareholder or consultant of Santa Fe take any responsibility for the results or consequences of any attempt to use, rely upon, disseminate or otherwise adopt any of the information contained in this guide and any liability is hereby disclaimed.

 

Select login type

If you haven’t received your login details then please get in touch with your relocation contact

Login as an assigneeLogin as a client

Santa Fe WeChat QR code
ID: SantaFeRelo