Paris to keep its expanded outdoor café terraces until summer 2021

The emergency measure to expand the outdoor terraces of Paris cafés to allow for more social distancing is set to be extended until the summer of 2021.

Paris to keep its expanded outdoor café terraces until summer 2021
Many cafés have expanded their outdoor seating area. Photo: AFP

When France lifted its strict lockdown in April, cafés in Paris were initially only allowed to open their outdoor terrace areas.

That restriction was later lifted, but many cafés had already been granted permission by the mayor to expand their cramped terraces – with many annexing parking spots and smaller streets to create larger spaces for their customers to spread out in.

The terraces have remained popular over the summer, with many café owners reporting that their customers feel safer and more comfortable outside in the open air.

Now Paris City Hall says it will extend the temporary permissions until June 30th 2021.

READ ALSO 'Everyone wants to be outside' – how Paris cafés are coping with the new health rules

Deputy mayor Emmanuel Grégoire said that the extension would be granted “given the extent of the crisis that is hitting the sector”.

Around 8,000 Paris cafés have been granted extensions, although they are accompanied with strict conditions, including that the extended part of the terrace must close by 10pm.

Since the end of the lockdown Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo has worked hard to adapt the landscape of the city to permit as much social distancing as possible – with the creation of more pedestrianised streets to allow for café terraces to expand and the creation of extra cycle lanes to reduce he need for people to crowd onto public transport.

The Rue de Rivoli has become a cycle-only route since the lockdown ended.

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Macron announces free condoms for under-25s in France

French president Emmanuel Macron has announced that from the beginning of January, condoms will be available for free in pharmacies for young people.

Macron announces free condoms for under-25s in France

Speaking while on a visit to Vienne in south west France, the president said: “In pharmacies, condoms will be free for 18-25 year-olds. This will begin on January 1st.

He added: “It is a small revolution of prevention.”

Since 2019 condoms have been available on prescription from doctors and midwives, with the cost reimbursed via the carte vitale health card.

However, Macron’s announcement goes a step further and makes them available on an over-the-counter basis from pharmacies, without the need for a prescription or to obtain a reimbursement via the health card.

Since the beginning of 2022, women aged between 18 and 25 have been offered the contraceptive pill, IUDs, contraceptive patches and other long-term contraceptives for free, while all women can now access the morning-after pill for free. 

Under-18s are already entitled to free contraception, but there were concerns that some women were stopping contraception once they turned 18 because of the cost.

The French government also launched on December 1st a new advertising campaign around AIDS – reminding people that with correct treatment AIDS patients can end with an undetectable viral load and therefore be unable to pass on the virus.

The campaign, which is appearing on billboards around France, is a play on words on séropositif (HIV positive).