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Curfew, bars, travel and health passports: What rules are in place in France right now?

Wednesday, June 9th marked the day that France moved into the third phase of lifting lockdown - here's what the new rules say.

Curfew, bars, travel and health passports: What rules are in place in France right now?
With curfew relaxed, nightlife can begin again in France. Photo: Ludovic Marin/AFP

Bars, cafés and restaurants can reopen indoor spaces – previously allowed to open only their terraces, bars and cafés can now reopen indoors as well, with a 50 percent limit on capacity and a maximum of 6 people per table. Anyone drinking or eating inside will have to provide their contact details and cafés are setting up QR codes that customers can scan.

READ ALSO QR codes and sign-ins – how France’s reopened restaurants will keep track of customers

There’s a change to outdoor areas too, as terraces will be able to operate at 100 percent of their normal capacity, albeit still with the 6-person limit on tables.

Bar service will not be allowed either indoors or outdoors.

International travel sees big changes with the introduction of the traffic light system which ends restrictions on vaccinated travellers from many non-EU countries – full details HERE.

Curfew moves back to 11pm from 9pm. Anyone out between 11pm and 6am will still need an attestation justifying their essential reason for being out, but bars etc will be able to stay open until 11pm.

READ ALSO How France’s curfew will work this summer

Health passports come into use for events within France. The French health passport is already up and running on the TousAntiCovid app, which now has a ‘my wallet’ section where you can scan in either vaccination certificates or a recent negative Covid test. From June 9th, this will be required to enter certain large events in France including concerts and sports matches.

READ ALSO When and where do you need a health passport? 

Gyms and swimming pools reopen for the general public, with limits on the total numbers of people allowed and strict health protocols in place.

Events of up to 5,000 people are again allowed, with a health passport. Large events such as concerts and sports matches can start up again, up to a 5,000 person limit. Entry will be via the health passport with proof of either being fully vaccinated or having been recently tested.

Spas reopen for the general public, at full capacity.

Shops, museums, cinemas and tourist sites get an increase in their customer capacity. These reopened on May 19th but had to allow 8 square metres for each person. That limit drops down to 4m sq per person on June 9th, meaning less restrictions on entry numbers. Meanwhile cinemas and theatres can move up to 65 percent of their normal capacity, up to a maximum of 1,000 people, or 5,000 people with a health passport.

Most larger museums, galleries and tourist sites are still operating a policy of advance booking only, so check in advance of your visit and some of the bigger sites have chosen to reopen later in the summer.

IN DETAIL When are France’s tourist sites reopening?

Remote working – government advice for everyone who can to work from home full time comes to an end, but this does not mark a mass ‘back to the office’. The protocol published by the Labour Ministry says only that the 100 percent remote working recommendation ends, but advises a gradual and phased return to the office, with the exact details worked out between employers and employees. 

“This must be the starting point of a move to find the right balance between face-to-face and remote working, and to put in place new practices,” said Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne.

Weddings or civil ceremonies are allowed but the venue must be at no more than 50 percent of its capacity, while funerals have a maximum of 75 attendees.

And what stays the same?

Gatherings of more than 10 people in public places remain advised against, unless health protocols are in place.

Masks are still compulsory in all indoor public spaces, at pain of a €135 fine. While some local authorities have lifted the rule on masks in outdoor private spaces in most of France, including virtually all of the big cities, masks remain compulsory outside as well.

Nightclubs remain closed.

Member comments

  1. Events up to 5000 people allowed, yippy! Yet when you sit outside your 7th friend has to sit at a seperate table! It all makes so much sense!

    1. Just use some common sense, which seems to be lacking in certain sections of today’s society.

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Energy bills, remote working and ‘coup’ phrases: 6 essential articles for life in France

What you can expect from your energy bills in France in 2023, how serious winter blackout warnings actually are, remote working in France and a word with multiple meanings - here are six essential articles for life in France.

Energy bills, remote working and 'coup' phrases: 6 essential articles for life in France

France’s freeze on gas prices comes to an end at the end of 2022, while the four percent cap on electricity price rises also expires – however the government has now announced the price caps for 2023.

We’ve done sole calculations and figured out what the new price rates will mean for your monthly energy bills.

EXPLAINED: What your French energy bills will look like in 2023

Now, we don’t want to put a downer on your day, but blackouts are a distant possibility in the months ahead.

RTE – the independent, electricity system operator of France – has laid out what a worst-case scenario might actually entail, and what would need to happen before we reach that point.

Revealed: The worst-case scenario for blackouts this winter in France

More possible bad news, we’re afraid. Travellers planning a trip between France and the UK in 2023 are likely to face ‘massive disruption’ caused by a combination of the EU’s new digital visa system and the UK government’s unwillingness to work in a constructive manner with French or EU leaders, a former British ambassador to France has warned.

Fears of ‘massive disruption’ of travel between France and UK in 2023

Modern technology means that many jobs can be done from anywhere in the world with only a laptop and a decent wifi connection – but what are the rules if you are working remotely in France for a company back in your home country?

Because this is a relatively recent phenomenon, it’s not always easy to find information on this – so from immigration paperwork to taxes, here’s what you need to know.

Working remotely from France: What are the rules for foreigners?

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French is a difficult language to pick up. We know. Understanding is not helped by the fact, for example, that there is one four-letter word that pops up repeatedly, in a bewildering array of different meanings. So, here’s our definitive guide to getting to grips with ‘coup’.

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