Curfew hours have been extended to 18:00 to 06:00 in 15 departments across the east of France in response to the local Covid-19 situation from today, January 2.
Government spokesperson Gabriel Attal made the announcement yesterday on TV channel TF1, saying: "The virus continues to circulate in France... with a disparity between the territories".
In the rest of France, the curfew hours will remain 20:00 to 06:00.
List of department where the curfew now begins at 18:00:
Territoire de Belfort
Five other departments were expected to be on the list but have not been included. These are, Aube, Haut-Rhin, Yonne, Allier and Ardèche.
The list of departments will be re-evaluated in a week's time.
"If the situation were to deteriorate further in certain territories, the necessary decisions will be taken,” Mr Attal said.
He said that the new curfew hours will apply uniformly across the department, without a distinction between rural and urban areas.
Anyone wishing to leave their house during these hours should use the same exemption certificate (attestation de déplacement) as is already available for the 20:00 curfew.
Mr Attal said that this weekend there would be a “very big tolerance” for people returning home after Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Practicalities of the extended curfew
The Alpes-Maritimes prefecture has published a list outlining the practicalities of the 18:00 curfew.
These measures are expected to follow in other departments although there may be slight variations.
Shops, personal services (hairdressers, beauticians, etc.) will close at 18:00. In other words, it will no longer be possible to go shopping after work for many, for example.
Picking up food from restaurants will also no longer be allowed after 18:00. Home deliveries may continue though.
Movements related to professional activity are not changed however you will need an exception certificate provided by your employer if you are an employee.
Sports and exercise
Outdoor sports and exercise will no longer be possible after 18:00.
Taking dogs for a walk will still be allowed, the same as during the 20:00 curfew. Anyone doing this should fill out an attestation de déplacement.
Childcare / education and training services
Childcare services, education services and vocational training services can remain open after 18:00.
Staff working there must fill out an attestation de déplacement, ticking the box: activité professionnelle, enseignement ou formation
Pupils, parents, school transport drivers, etc are also covered by this exemption.
Extracurricular activities scheduled after 18:00 will be “tolerated” until the end of the holidays on January 3. From Monday, they will have to stop at 18:00.