COVID-19 : the situation in France

29 May 2020

Information for international journalists and tour operators

ATOUT FRANCE - France Tourism Development Agency

In view of the positive evolution of the health situation in France and in Europe, and according to the European Commission’s recommendations, France has lifted all movement restrictions at its internal European borders (land, air and sea) from June 15th (June 22nd for people coming from Spain).

People coming from the European area can therefore enter the French territory without any restriction related to the Covid-19 pandemic. By way of reciprocity, only visitors from the United Kingdom remain subject to quarantine restrictions upon arrival.

From July 1st, France will also gradually and differentially re-open the Schengen area external borders, depending on the outside country's  health situation.

Since June 22nd:

On June 22nd, the French Government announced new reopening measures for the summer to be applied all over the country, except for Mayotte and French Guiana, where the virus is still active:

  • Cinemas, casinos and gaming halls are opened again and summer camps can welcome young people all over the country, in strict compliance with sanitary protocols. 

From July 11th (end of the health state of emergency on mainland France):

  • River cruises will again be authorized; in coordination with European partner countries, it may be decided to resume sea cruises between European ports for ships whose capacity does not exceed a limit set by ministerial decree;
  • Stadiums and racetracks will be opened to the public, with a maximum capacity of 5,000 people. As for performance halls, activities involving more than 1,500 people will have to be declared, so that the respect of sanitary protocols can be guaranteed.
  • The maximum capacity of 5,000 people for major events, stadiums and performance halls is in theory in force until September 1st. A further review of the national epidemiological situation will be carried out mid-July to decide whether rules can be relaxed for the second half of August.

From September 1st:

Subject to a new assessment of the epidemiological situation, the return from the summer holidays may be marked by further relaxation:

  • Opening of establishments hosting fairs, exhibitions and shows;
  • Authorization of events gathering more than 5,000 people;
  • Potentially, opening of nightclubs and international maritime cruises.

Please find here the Government's recommendations updated in real time.

Caroline Leboucher, Atout France’s Managing Director : 

« From June 15th, France welcomes again tourists and visitors from all over Europe, which is a huge joy for all the professionals in the sector. As of July 1st, some non-European travelers will also be welcome back (depending on their country’s health situation) in hotels, camping, restaurants, museums or tourist attractions in our territory. Thanks to the actions taken, the health situation has positively evolved and the French tourism stakeholders have implemented all the necessary measures to ensure their clients safety, thanks to the strict application of health protocols approved by the government, with the promise, however, of keeping intact the spirit of vacation and the French art of living!  »

Specific quote « professional events and meetings industry »:

« France, and especially Paris, are privileged destinations for many professional event organizers. The destination and its capital are well classed in the latest ICCA ranking (respectively in 3rd and 1st position in terms of the number of congresses hosted). The Government’s announcement to authorize again the organization of fairs, exhibitions and shows as of September 1st was welcomed with satisfaction by corporate events and trade show professionals. This gives the sector and its French and international customers the visibility needed to resume activity in this key economic sector. »








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