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One year after the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and despite the arrival of vaccines, the health situation remains unstable around the world. While we thought we would see the end of the tunnel last summer, the situation has been escalating for several months in many countries, and the emergence of variants is not helping matters. To somehow contain the spread of the epidemic, some governments have decided to act and close their borders. This is the case with France which, since January 31, 2021, has closed its borders to travelers originating from non-European Union countries.

Entry into France is still authorized, but under certain conditions ... Who can enter France? For what reasons? What are the formalities? Everything is explained in this article.

Note: this article is updated regularly, following changes in French and European regulations. Last update: March 18, 2021.

The 20 accepted reasons for entering France


To be able to enter France, you must first prove that your trip meets a "compelling reason" except for Australia, South Korea, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Singapore.

What is a compelling motive? The French government has drawn up a list of 20 scenarios that can justify a trip to France, divided into 3 categories: health, family and professional.

Compelling health reasons:

  • Urgent hospitalization
  • Support for a person requiring urgent hospitalization

Compelling family reasons:

  • Death of a family member
  • Visit to a person whose prognosis is vital
  • Travel to France as part of the exercise of custody rights recognized by court order
  • Assistance to the elderly, sick or disabled who do not have any other support
  • Summons by a judicial or administrative authority
  • Legal or economic impossibility of remaining in the territory in which the person is located
  • Safety of the person
  • Return to the main residence when the trip was started before January 31, 2021
  • Student moving to France for the second university semester as part of a program at a higher education institution
  • Married couples and civil partnerships but one of whose members is established abroad for professional reasons
  • Minor children attending school in France while the family home is established abroad
  • Couples with children, one living in France, the other abroad and separated
  • Students in a situation of taking a competition
  • Return to the main residence when established in France

Compelling professional reasons:

  • Missions essential to the pursuit of an economic activity, requiring an on-site presence that cannot be postponed
  • Health or research professional contributing to the fight against Covid 19 or participating in cooperation operations of major interest in health
  • One-off missions related to the exercise of public authority prerogatives that cannot be postponed
  • High-level professional sportsmen for participation in meetings validated by the Ministry of Sports

Regardless of the "compelling reason" for which you wish to go to France, you must be able to provide a document attesting to the veracity of your reason.

All the necessary documents to cross the French borders

Depending on whether you are entering France from a country in the European area (EU member states, Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland and the Vatican) or from any other country, the documents requested will be different.

You enter France from a country in the European area

Reaching France from a country in the European area requires two documents:

1. A negative PCR test of less than 72 hours.

A document attesting to a negative result on the "RT-PCR-COVID" virological screening test (nasal test) dated less than 72 hours will be required from you when crossing a border. If you cannot find a testing center near you, we invite you to request information on the locations of testing centers from your French Consulate.

2. A declaration on honor (different from that for travel from a country outside the European area) indicating that:

  • You have no Covid symptoms,
  • You are not aware of having been in contact with a person positive for Covid-19 in the 14 days preceding your trip,
  • You agree to do a PCR test upon entering France.

You can download the declaration to be completed by clicking here.


You are entering France from a country outside of the European area (except for Australia, South Korea, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Singapore).

In this case, you will need to provide three documents.

1. A negative PCR test of less than 72 hours.

A document attesting to a negative result on the "RT-PCR-COVID" virological screening test (nasal test) dated less than 72 hours will be required from you when crossing a border. If you cannot find a testing center near you, we invite you to request information on the locations of testing centers from your French Consulate.

2. A declaration on honor (different from that for travel from a country in the European area) indicating that:

  • You have no Covid symptoms,
  • You are not aware of having been in contact with a person positive for Covid-19 in the 14 days preceding your trip,
  • You agree to do a PCR test upon entering France,
  • You agree to isolate yourself for 7 days upon your arrival in France,
  • You agree to do a PCR test once you have passed your 7-day quarantine.

Download the declaration to be completed here.

3. A certificate of travel to France.

On this certificate, you must indicate the nature of your trip, which must be for a compelling reason. You can download the document by clicking here.

You enter France from Australia, South Korea, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Singapore.

Reaching France from Australia, South Korea, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Singapore requires two documents

1. A negative PCR test of less than 72 hours.

A document attesting to a negative result on the "RT-PCR-COVID" virological screening test (nasal test) dated less than 72 hours will be required from you when crossing a border. If you cannot find a testing center near you, we invite you to request information on the locations of testing centers from your French Consulate.

2. A declaration on honor (different from that for travel from a country in the European area) indicating that:

  • You have no Covid symptoms,
  • You are not aware of having been in contact with a person positive for Covid-19 in the 14 days preceding your trip,
  • You agree to do a PCR test upon entering France,
  • You agree to isolate yourself for 7 days upon your arrival in France,
  • You agree to do a PCR test once you have passed your 7-day quarantine.
    Download the declaration to be completed here.


Note that the information and procedures listed above change periodically. We strongly recommend that you keep yourself informed of any updates to this article on a regular basis.

Remember to be careful and try to limit your movements as much as possible.