The French vaccine pass is required for anyone over the age of 16 to enter a wide range of venues like bars, restaurants, museums, cinemas and even long-distance train carriages.
Most people use the TousAntiCovid app to store the pass on their smartphones – and others carry around paper proof of vaccination or recent recovery from Covid necessary to hold a valid pass.
But what if your phone has run out of charge? And what if your paper vaccination certificates are now crumpled beyond recognition after hours of punishment in your pocket?
Fortunately there is a solution. Last year, a French company called Evolis developed a technology that allows businesses to scan a QR code from the TousAntiCovid app or vaccination certificate, send the information to a printer and then produce a credit-card-sized plastic version of the pass.
Voila….. On y est !https://t.co/7oo2u5Q2Kl
— Philippe Lesot (@LesotPhilippe) January 21, 2022
Increasing numbers of businesses in France are buying access to the Evolis technology – specifically the printer – which is sold for €1,290. The printed cards show the QR code which shows proof of vaccination or recovery, as well as your first name, second name and date of birth.
Pharmacies, supermarkets and even some bakeries and tobacconists are now offering clients the chance to print their vaccine passes onto plastic cards for just €3. There is even a website where you can order such a card online for €5, postage included.
The cards could be particularly useful for skiers who are now subject to vaccine pass checks at ski lifts. Rather than fumbling around for your phone or vaccination certificate, you could simply attach the card to your salopettes, or hold it alongside your lift pass.
Children between the age of 12-15 are not required to hold a vaccine pass but still must hold a health pass. In theory you could also get this printed onto one of the cards, but you should check this with whichever establishment is responsible for the printing. Children younger than this do not need a health or vaccine pass.
If you have not yet completed your full cycle of Covid vaccination, it may not be worth investing in one of these cards. This is because with each shot, you receive a new QR code.
These cards may not be practical for tourists because to use a vaccine pass in France, you need a QR code that is recognised by the French system.
If you were vaccinated in the EU, Schengen zone or UK then you can scan the QR code on your vaccination certificate straight into the French app. This is also the case if you previously had a health pass and need to add a booster shot in order to keep it valid.
If you received your vaccination in the UK, it may not be worth getting this card because the NHS vaccination certificate QR codes reset every 30 days.
If, however, you were vaccinated in the USA, Canada, Australia or any other non EU/UK/Schengen country then things are a little more complicated. Once in France, you will have to take your vaccination certificate to an approved pharmacy in order to get a QR code that can be used with the French app. Full details HERE.