France extends ban on UK travel ‘until further notice’ due to rise in coronavirus cases

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France announced last month that Brits were banned from entering France following the detection of a new strain of coronavirus. These restrictions were due to be lifted on January 6 but have now been extended to last for some time.

French Prime Minister Jean Castex said on Thursday that the ban would be in place until “further notice” until the situation in the UK improves.

He added that the health crisis in France had become even more “fragile”.

The news comes as a new strain of coronavirus has now been detected in the country.

The new variant, which saw the UK barred from several countries, means that coronavirus cases continue to rise.

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With the nation in its third lockdown, people can’t travel abroad unless it is essential.

Essential travel includes for work, education or health reasons. 

Other exemptions include truck driver and train operators who are still allowed to cross the border if tested negative for Covid-19 on UK territory. 

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) regularly updates its travel advice for Britons which lists who may enter the country.

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It details that “French nationals and nationals of the European Area and their spouses and children”, are permitted into the country as well as “British and/or third country nationals who are either habitually resident in France, the European Union or the European Area, or who must travel for essential reasons (as specified by the French government”. 

The last group who is allowed to travel into France includes “British or third country nationals travelling for certain exceptional reasons” (as specified by the French Embassy London’s list).

It adds that people due to travel to France should contact their travel operator.

Anyone travelling from the UK to France will have to present a negative coronavirus test to travel authorities taken 72 hours before departure.

As well as providing a negative test, arrivals from the UK also have to provide extra information.

The FCDO added: “Arrivals from the UK will need to complete both a ’sworn statement’ (déclaration sur l’honneur) form self-certifying they are not suffering from symptoms associated with coronavirus and have not been in contact with confirmed cases in the preceding fortnight, and a signed ‘travel certificate’ (attestation), confirming their reason for travel.

“These can be found on the French government’s website.”

Health Minister Olivier Véran said that there are currently 19 cases of the new variant in France, which is expected to rise.

He added that there will be an increased level of monitoring the new strain, particularly in schools. 

Three cases of the South African variant have also been reported in France. 

France is also not on the travel corridor list meaning anyone entering the UK from the country must self-isolate for 10 days.

Other countries who also have a ban on UK travel include Greece and Spain.

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