12 questions about France’s easing of lockdown measures


A three-step plan to get France out of the lockdown will begin on Saturday, November 28, when stores will reopen and daily exercise limits will be extended.Two other phases have been described which will take France out of lockdown on December 15 and then see restaurants and cafes reopen on January 20, 2021.

We’re answering some of the most frequently asked questions about the new measures.

Can we go on vacation abroad after December 15th?

Yes. If the Covid-19 situation is under control, from December 15 you will be able to move freely in France and also travel abroad.

It is important to check the travel restrictions of the destination country and to keep abreast of the restrictions in France before your return.

Can my friends who live in the UK come and visit me for Christmas?

Yes. If France’s lockdown is dropped and replaced with a curfew on December 15, that will be possible.

They will have to respect the curfew rules.

Can I now return to my second home in France?

From December 15, it will be possible to return to your second home in France.

How many people can we invite for Christmas dinner? And are they allowed to stay after 9:00 p.m.?

French Prime Minister Jean Castex asked people to “limit the number of people at the table” because these “moments of festive and friendly gatherings, where we let our guard down … are particularly risky”.

He did not give an exact figure, but said “concrete recommendations” would be announced before the Christmas holidays.

It should be remembered that the curfew will only be lifted on December 24 and 31. So if you’re having a dinner party on December 25, all of your guests will need to be home before the 9:00 p.m. curfew.

We plan to return to the UK on December 20th, when a 9pm to 7am curfew will be in effect. Can we leave before 07:00?

When the curfew went into effect in October earlier this year, there was an option on the long-distance travel exemption form. This allowed people to leave their homes to take trains, planes, ferries, etc. who had to leave during the curfew hours.

People were asked to complete the exemption certificate (travel certificate) and keep a copy of the ticket with them as proof.

If you plan to leave your home before 7:00 am to take a train or ferry, then this should be allowed.

Otherwise, you risk a fine if you are stopped by the police.

Can my home hairdresser come back to me?

Yes. From Saturday November 28, all shops and services will reopen. This includes home services such as hairdressers, cleaners, etc.

Likewise, hairdressers and beauticians will be able to reopen their shops.

Current exemption forms (travel certificates) still valid after Saturday?

New forms will be created and made available from Saturday 28 November. These should take into account new rules such as purchases and exercise limits.

Keep an eye on the Home Office webpage for more information.

Can we go beyond 20 kilometers for shopping?

Yes, it is already possible today. Travel for shopping is not limited in distance or time. For all businesses, whether they are deemed essential or not, then there should be no distance limit.

Is driving into the forest and then going for a walk acceptable as part of the daily exercise allowance?

Yes, from Saturday November 28 you can take your car to the forest and enjoy a walk as part of your daily exercise.

Remember that you should stay within 12 miles of your home and stay no longer than three hours, including the time it takes to drive to and from the location.

Find out how to calculate your 20 kilometer radius here.

Can we meet friends while we exercise? For example, now that the exercise limit is 20 kilometers / three hours, can I go hiking with friends?

For the moment no. It is still forbidden to meet people in public or in their homes.

The relaxation of exercise limits that will take effect on Saturday, November 28 is not intended to allow visits with family or friends.

This will be possible from December 15th.

What sports are we allowed to do now?

From November 28, all individual sports are allowed, within three hours and within 20 kilometers of your home.

This includes jogging, cycling, golf, horseback riding, sailing, swimming, fishing, hunting, etc.

Team and contact sports are still prohibited until at least January 20.

Starting Saturday, November 28, schoolchildren will be allowed to return to outdoor extracurricular activities. From December 15, this will also extend to indoor activities.

What is the probability that France will have less than 5,000 cases of Covid-19 per day in mid-December? And what happens if this goal is not met?

The lockout in France will end on December 15 if the average number of daily Covid-19 cases falls below 5,000 and the number of Covid-19 patients in intensive care units falls to between 2,500 and 3,000 or less.

If so, a 9:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. curfew will be established in place of the lockdown.

The Minister of Health, Olivier Véran, declared at a press conference on November 26 that “for more than three weeks now, the number of cases is in constant decline.

“At this rate, we could meet our target of 5,000 cases per day on average by the second week or the end of the second week of December,” he said.

President Emmanuel Macron said in a November 24 speech that “the number of daily positive cases has fallen sharply. It was over 60,000. Last week there were an average of 20,000 cases per day. ”

The government has not yet announced what will happen if the targets are not met, but it is believed that the lockdown measures will be extended.

Read more:

Daily update: Coronavirus and the situation in France


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