UK-France border closure: Can my British partner come?

The rules have been slightly relaxed to allow certain people to enter France if they are able to present a negative coronavirus test

23 December 2020
Picture illustrates a couple together at Christmas during the Covid-19 pandemic. It will be possible for British partners of French nationals to travel to France this Christmas
By Connexion journalist

Reader question: I am French and I live in the UK with my British husband. I am supposed to spend Christmas with my family in France. Is he able to come with me now?

Short answer: Yes, as long as you get a negative coronavirus test

France’s government announced that from midnight December 22, certain people will be allowed to enter France from the UK as long as they can present a negative coronavirus test taken within 72 hours of departing. 

The government states that the people who can now enter are:

  • French and EU/EEA nationals, as well as their partners and children. Typically for Covid-related restrictions, this includes pacsed and long-term live-in partners. The Connexion has asked for official clarification on this and if it will be required to present any proof to travel companies. 
  • British or non-EU/EEA citizens who are residents in France or another EU country
  • People who are required to make essential journeys (see a complete list at the end of the article)

Regardless of their nationality, all travellers over the age of 11 will have to present a laboratory analysis document showing a negative result of a Covid-19 test to travel companies - airlines, train and ferry companies etc. - taken in the past 72 hours. 

If it is not possible to get a PCR test, certain antigen tests are also acceptable. A full list of those can be found here (in English). Read more about this here and read a personal account of trying to find the right antigen test in the UK here

This arrangement will remain in place until January 6, when it will be reviewed. 

Full list of people allowed to enter France for essential reasons:

  • Non-EU/EEA nationals, holders of a valid French or European residence permit or long-stay visa, whose main residence is in France or who are in transit through France to their main residence in a European Union country or equivalent.
  • Non-EU/EEA nationals in transit in the international zone for less than 24 hours
  • Member of a delegation on an official mission or the staff of a diplomatic or consular mission, or an international organisation having its headquarters or an office in France, as well as their spouse or children
  • Foreign health professional contributing to the fight against Covid-19
  • Foreign crew or personnel operating passenger and cargo flights, or travelling as a passenger to position themselves at their base of departure
  • Foreign national providing international transport of goods
  • Crew member or person operating a commercial or fishing vessel
  • Students holding a VLS or VCS for studies or internships (excluding the VCS Competition), or coming for less than 90 days from a country exempt from the VCS, or minors in school, who can prove that they have a place to stay in France.
  • Professor or researcher employed or invited by a French educational institution or research laboratory who travels for study and teaching purposes
  • Non-EU/EEA nationals with a VLS "talent passport"
  • Persons benefiting from a laissez-passer issued by the Direction générale des étrangers en France du ministère de l’intérieur, to facilitate the exercise of an economic activity, to reunite with partners or for medical reasons.

Read more:

Covid-19: tests for France residents returning from UK

France imposes UK travel ban for 48 hours

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