A negative Covid-19 test is currently mandatory for anyone entering the UK from abroad, including from France.
The test must be taken within three days (72 hours) of leaving France and the results must be in English, French or Spanish.
The UK government website states that the test can be a PCR test or an antigen test as long as it meets the performance standards of specificity ≥97%, sensitivity ≥80% at viral loads above 100,000 copies / ml.
Rapid antigenic tests are readily available in many pharmacies across France. You can come in and make an appointment. However, you will need to consider whether the tests used meet the above standards.
Otherwise, the safest bet is to book a PCR test in a lab or some airports.
All Covid-19 tests in France are free for people residing in the country.
This is not always the case for non-residents. Some laboratories bill people who are not part of the French health system.
Prices vary from € 30 to € 70.
For a precedent Log in article We asked several French laboratories about their policies on PCR testing for those outside the French healthcare system, with varying results.
A laboratory group in the Alpes-Maritimes said tests were charged between € 55 and € 70, a second laboratory in the same department said they were free but a medical prescription was required.
A third, in Charente-Maritime, said his tests are free, while another in Brittany said they were “around € 50”.
The easiest way to find a place to take a Covid-19 test is on the government website sante.fr. Just type in the department you are in and you’ll see a list of all the labs offering testing.
There is also a map of all the testing laboratories with the relevant contact details.
Please note that the search function on the map does not always work. You might be better off zooming in on the area you live in to find the nearest testing center.
The connection checked the map to find the test center closest to our reader and found a Eurofins laboratory in Digne-les-Bains.
We called the center and were told that people who do not have a Vitale card can be tested but will have to pay € 50.84 for a Covid-19 PCR test.
The laboratory advised to book online.
Sante.fr provides laboratory phone numbers and you can make an appointment by calling directly, but staff may not speak English.
You can also make an appointment via Doctolib.fr without a social security number. All you need to do is sign up for a free account. You will then need to provide your address, postal code and city.
Type “test” in the search bar, then choose the option ” COVID-19 screening PCR test (nasopharyngeal swab)»From the drop-down menu to search for appointments.
It is also possible to book Covid-19 tests online via the Covid Express tool. However, this does require you to have a valid French social security number.
Some airports in France, such as Orly and Charles de Gaulle in Paris and Nice Airport, offer Covid-19 testing services.
You can check your nearest airport’s website to see if you can take a Covid-19 test there.
There may be fees for people who are not part of the French health system.
Free tests for tourists
French European Affairs Minister Clément Beaune said on May 15 that Covid-19 tests would be free for tourists coming to France this summer, including owners of second homes.
However, no further details have been announced on how it works.
PCR tests will be free for tourists visiting France this summer
Explained: Covid-19 rules for travel to and from France
How to recover money in France for a Covid test taken abroad