France’s Covid-19 ‘health pass’: Where it is mandatory and what will change on August 9

·2-min read

France has made it obligatory to show a passe sanitaire (health pass) – proving that you are vaccinated or have tested negative for Covid-19 – for access to public venues for more than 50 people since July 21. On August 9 the health pass requirement will be extended to a range of new settings, including long-distance transport, restaurants and cafés – even France’s famed outdoor terraces.

The controversial extension of the health pass that will come into force on August 9 has already sparked protests, but the government is determined to press ahead and make the pass a key part of the fight against Covid-19. The Constitutional Council, France's highest legal authority, will rule on the new legislation August 5. But the government is moving forward with its plans on the assumption that it will be approved and has said it will allow for a one-week adjustment period as businesses bring themselves into line with the new rules.

Any of the following documents can be used as a health pass in France:

  • Proof of having completed a vaccination programme (two doses of an EU-approved vaccine: Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca or Johnson & Johnson)

  • A negative PCR or antigen test taken within the last 48 hours

  • A Covid-19 recovery certificate that is less than six months old

Anyone who enters an establishment without showing a valid pass can be fined €135 for a first offence.

Where a health pass is required

From July 21: Cultural and leisure venues of more than 50 people

  • Cinemas

  • Libraries

  • Nightclubs, discos and bars with dancing

  • Gaming rooms, casinos

  • Museums

  • Zoos, amusement parks, circuses

  • Swimming pools and sports centres

  • Theatres

  • Concerts and festivals

  • Indoor sports facilities

  • Cruise ships, ferries

  • Hotels, holiday resorts and camping sites with swimming pools, playgrounds or other entertainment facilities

>> Covid-19 'health pass' comes into force for access to French cultural venues

From August 9

  • Cafés and restaurants, including outdoor terraces

  • Fairs, trade shows and conferences

  • Care homes and retirement homes

  • Long-distance transport (airplanes, intercity trains, TGV, overnight trains, long-distance buses)

  • Medical establishments (with the exception of emergency rooms)

  • Hotels, holiday resorts and full-service camp sites (with the exception of camp sites that only offer accommodation, lodges and guest rooms)

>> French parliament approves law requiring Covid pass for restaurants, travel starting in August

Access to shopping centres is permitted unless otherwise decreed by local authorities in the event of a regional outbreak.

The health pass rules will apply to minors age 12 and over starting September 30.

The rules are set to apply until November 15 unless renewed by a parliamentary vote.

Source: The French government

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