A tourist boats travel along the River Seine near the Alexandre III bridge and the Eiffel Tower in Paris July 15, 2013. Picture: REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
A tourist boats travel along the River Seine near the Alexandre III bridge and the Eiffel Tower in Paris July 15, 2013. Picture: REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Travelling to France? Everything South Africans should know to plan their trip

By Clinton Moodley Time of article published Aug 4, 2021

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Vaccinated South Africans can finally take their much-anticipated holiday to France- without the need for quarantine or Covid-19 tests.

Besides strolling through the streets of Paris, travellers should also add Nice, Marseille and Lyin to their bucket list.

If you are travelling to France, Air France shares some things you should know.

The accepted vaccines

You can travel to France if you have the following vaccines: Pfizer/Comirnaty, Moderna, AstraZeneca/Vaxzevria/Covishield, Janssen.

Always have your vaccination card on hand

Travellers will have to show proof of their vaccination throughout their journey, so keep it in a place where you can retrieve it easily.

Agnes Angrand, the deputy director of the French tourism authority, Atout France, suggested travellers carry their original vaccination card with them, extra photocopies of the card in their luggage and one photographed on their phone.

Once at the destination, travellers will have to show their vaccine card to access museums, concerts, sporting events and even cafés.

Go old school - make a reservation

With attractions reducing the number of people visiting, booking a reservation is vital. Some attractions allow you to make your reservations online, so you can schedule your activities even before you depart for your destination. Travellers can also reserve rental cars and train tickets, Air France said.

"Not only will making a reservation guarantee that you enjoy attractions, like seeing the Mona Lisa up close at the Louvre, this is also true for rental cars and train tickets," Air France told IOL Travel.

Don't forget to adhere to restrictions

Covid-19 regulations still need to be followed when in France.

Travellers have to wear their masks in public indoor spaces, on public transportation, in taxis and in ride-hailing vehicles.

"Tourists are encouraged to keep an eye out on signs around the country about masks and limits to the number of patrons allowed inside a particular area," Air France advised.

Back to South Africa

Before you leave France, all passengers have to show a negative Covid-19 test taken at least 72 hours before departure. This applies to vaccinated travellers as well.

"Finding a testing site in France is relatively easy. If you would rather get tested at the airport before your flight, you may need to make an appointment before you arrive, and the fee may be more expensive," Air France revealed.

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