This week in France: What you need to know

The Local
The Local - [email protected] • 18 Oct, 2021 Updated Mon 18 Oct 2021 09:46 CEST
This week in France: What you need to know
A visitor walks past a sign, displayed at the entrance of the Beaugrenelle shopping center, requesting visitors to provide a mandatory Covid-19 health pass to access the mall in Paris on August 16, 2021. - A health pass is now mandatory in France to access most of the public spaces or to travel on intercity trains following the Government's plan to squeeze infections and encourage vaccination. Since August 16, the health pass is also required to access shopping malls over 20,000 square meters in areas with high infection rates. (Photo by BERTRAND GUAY / AFP)

From taxes to traffic, health passports to the start of the school holidays, here's what is happening in France this week.



Another 12 départements are added to the list where primary school children do not have to wear masks in class as Covid case numbers fall. This rule now covers 79 of France's 101 mainland and overseas départements - find the full list here.


MPs debate a bill to extend the possible use of the health passport until summer 2022. The original pass sanitaire (health pass) law runs out on November 15th, but can be extended if MPs agree. The government wants to keep in place the possibility of using the health pass until next summer, but has also spoken of the possibility of it being scaled back in certain areas, or certain sectors. This will not happen before November 15th, however, according to the government spokesman.



The deadline to pay the property owner's tax, taxe foncière, falls on Wednesday, October 20th this year if you are paying online. The deadline for people paying by mail was the previous week. If you have not yet had a bill, check your online impots.gouv account or pay a visit to your local tax office to ensure that everything is up to date.


First reading in the Assemblée nationale of the 2022 budget.

READ ALSO How the 2022 budget will affect your finances


Real Madrid and France footballer Karim Benzema appears in court over the sextape blackmail case that saw him barred from the French squad before his recall ahead of Euro 2020.


Paris' famous Crazy Horse cabaret reopens after more than 19 months of pandemic-related closure, one of the last major tourist attractions to reopen.



Cheaper UK travel tests go on sale on Friday. If you're planning a trip to the UK there is a slight rule change to be aware of. Although all arrivals into the UK still need to book and pay for a Day 2 test before leaving France, from Sunday, October 24th these tests can be the cheaper antigen (lateral low) tests instead of PCR tests. These can be booked online from October 22nd, from the UK government's list of approved suppliers. Full details on the changes HERE.


Paris traffic is likely to be heavy on Friday evening since schools break up for the Toussaint (All Saints) holiday. The autumn holiday isn't quite such a big thing as the getaway for the summer holidays, but traffic forecaster bison futé has issued an amber warning for the greater Paris region on Friday. Traffic may also be heavier than normal elsewhere. 


If you're not one of those leaving Paris, there is a Lost in Frenchlation screening on Friday night.

The cinema club regularly screens French films with English subtitles and this week it is Onoda: 10,000 nights in the jungle. Young Japanese soldier Hiroo Onoda is sent to fight on a remote island in the Philippines just as World War II is about to end in this extraordinary portrait of a forgotten soldier. Refusing to believe the war is over, he will carry on fighting until 1974. The film from French director Arthur Harari, which is based on a true story, is in Japanese but will feature English subtitles.

The evening will kick off with drinks at L’Entrepôt cinema bar at 7pm, followed by the movie screening at 8pm. Tickets are available online here, and cost €8.50 full price; €7 for students and all other concessions.


Across France the Toussaint (All Saints) school holidays start. The dates for the two-week holiday are the same across France. In reality most children will break up on Friday, but some schools have Saturday morning classes so the official holiday dates are always counted from Saturday.


The rule change to UK travel test rules, as outlined above, comes into force from Sunday, October 24th. 


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