‘La Vie Est Belle’ is a French saying, and it roughly translates to ‘Life is Beautiful’ in English. Wait, why are we suddenly remembering French sayings, you ask?
That’s because after Switzerland and Germany, another European nation has decided to open its borders to Indian travellers, and you guessed it right, it’s France!
Travellers will be pleased to know that France has reopened its borders for Indians travellers vaccinated with Covishield, the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute of India.
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With this, a total of five vaccines are now being accepted for arrival in France: the one-shot Janssen vaccine by Johnson & Johnson, and the two-shot Pfizer (Comirnaty), Moderna, AstraZeneca (Vaxzevria), and AstraZeneca (Covishield).
With Covishield now being accepted as a proof of vaccination, French authorities have moved India up from the red list to the amber list. France does not permit travel from countries in the red list, irrespective of the vaccination status of the travellers. However, travellers from countries in the amber list can travel if they are vaccinated, or on pressing grounds if they are unvaccinated.
In line with India moving up to the amber list, the French authorities have released a new set of travel guidelines for vaccinated Indian travellers.
As per the new guidelines, there are no restrictions to entering mainland France if a traveller is fully vaccinated. Such travellers are not required to quarantine as well, as long as they carry the following two things:
> A valid proof of vaccination (for two-shot vaccines such as Covishield, the second shot must have been received at least seven days before travelling).
> A sworn declaration (which can be downloaded here) that states that they do not have COVID-19 symptoms and have not been in contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case in the last 14 days.
Travellers who already have a valid Type ‘C’ Schengen Visa for 3–5 years can also travel without any restrictions, as long as they’ve received two shots of any of the above-mentioned vaccines.
French authorities have also stated that there will be no quarantine for children under the age of 12.
Please note that unvaccinated travellers, or those vaccinated with vaccines not currently recognised by France, are still required to provide a ‘compelling reason to enter metropolitan France’, along with an RT-PCR/antigen test report. They must also complete testing on arrival, self-isolation and other formalities which can be checked in detail at our COVID-19 Guidelines Tracker page.
Travellers are also advised to reconfirm the entry guidelines with their respective airlines before travelling, since guidelines are subject to change on short notice.
In line with the new guidelines, French visa authorities in Delhi have started accepting applications from July 27, and the authorities in Mumbai are expected to begin accepting applications from tomorrow, July 30.
The recognition of Covishield in yet another country and the relaxed guidelines indicate that international travel is slowly but surely opening up again for Indian travellers.
Stay tuned with us for the latest travel updates!