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Railcard sale ends, doctors to strike: The week ahead in France

We also look at President Macron’s state visit to US, the Paris Olympic ticket ballot opening and more

We look at what this week has in store for people living in France Pic: Alexandros Michailidis / Joel_420 / Gerard Bottino / fifg / Shutterstock

Half-price railcard sale ends today

A sale by French rail operator SNCF on its carte Avantage railcards is due to end today (November 28). 

Under the sale you can purchase a card for €24.50 as opposed to the usual €49.

The discount applies to the carte Avantage jeune, adulte and senior – whether they are being bought for the first time or renewed – and means that the card will likely pay for itself with the first journey. 

A carte Avantage enables passengers to access 30% discounts on single journeys within France or Europe at weekends, in the week with a child or return journeys including an overnight stay on a weekend.

It also means a 60% discount for up to three accompanying children aged between four and 11 and capped fares for all second-class tickets. 

Journeys taking less than an hour and a half will therefore cost no more than €39, those lasting less than three hours will be no more than €59 and longer trips will be capped at €79.

Interior minister in New Caledonia 

Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin is visiting New Caledonia today to continue talks on the future of the territory.

The week-long visit will be the first made by an interior minister since New Caledonia’s independence referendum in 2021, in which residents opted resoundingly for ‘no’ but which was also boycotted by a large proportion of those in favour. 

However, the independence movement continues on the archipelago, and Mr Darmanin is set to meet with its representatives, along with other political groups, to hold discussions. 

Psychiatrists, medical laboratory workers and GPs to strike 

On Tuesday (November 29), psychiatrists across France are expected to strike in protest against an “unprecedented crisis” in terms of “material, financial and human resources”. 

Protesters are set to meet at 11:00 in front of the health ministry in Paris, calling for better working conditions.

On Thursday, laboratory biologist unions have also called their members to strike. 

French independent GPs are then also set to strike on Thursday and Friday (December 1 and 2). 

Read more: Why GPs in France are threatening to strike in December

Doctor unions say the movement will be “massive” but official figures on the number of GPs taking part have not yet been published. 

Women’s Forum Global Meeting 2022 

On Tuesday and Wednesday (November 29-30), the 17th edition of the Women’s Forum Global Meeting will take place in Paris. 

This annual forum aims to “transform the power of women’s voices and perspectives into forward-thinking economic and policy initiatives for social change”. 

The event will involve business leaders, lawmakers and other “agents of change” from more than 175 countries. 

Restaurateur who refused hijab-wearing woman entry on trial 

A restaurant owner will go on trial on Tuesday over her refusal to allow a man and his mother entry to eat because the mother was wearing a hijab. 

The owner of the Chez Patxi restaurant in Hendaye in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques told the woman that she was “dressed like in prehistoric times.” The scene was filmed and shared on social media. 

The owner appeared in front of a Bayonne court on November 15, charged with religion-based discrimination, and the prosecution called for her to pay a €600 fine. The judges will hand down their judgement tomorrow. 

President Macron makes state visit to US 

President Emmanuel Macron will be visiting the US on Wednesday to meet President Joe Biden for discussions on nuclear weapons and economic protectionism. 

President Macron will visit Washington and New Orleans, and will be received by both President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris. 

France plays last group stage World Cup match 

Also on Wednesday, France will play its last group stage World Cup match against Tunisia. 

The match will begin at 16:00 in France, with les bleus looking to make it three wins out of three after their victories over Australia and Denmark last week. 

Regardless of the result, France are guaranteed to progress to the next round.

Paris Olympic tickets 

From Thursday (December 1), members of the public will be able to sign up to a ticketing draw for the Paris Olympic Games in 2024. 

This will remain open until January 31. Then, on February 15, those who are successful in the draw and are members of the Club Paris 2024 (the official hospitality provider of the olympic and paralympic games) will be able to buy ticket packs giving access to three different sports events. 

These ‘multi-ticket’ packs can be personalised based on the preferences of the ticket holder and seat availability. 

People will find out if they have been successful in the draw by email and will have 48 hours to choose their events.

February 19 will mark the opening of ticket sales to people who have been chosen in the ‘multi-ticket’ draw but who are not members of the Paris 2024 club.

In May 2023, those who are successful in the ballot will be able to buy individual tickets. 

Those not chosen by the ballot will have the opportunity to buy tickets later in the year.

Read more: Paris Olympics 2024: How can I become a volunteer?

Read more: Paris 2024 Olympic Games: ticket sales calendar revealed

Advertising screens turned off in Paris at night 

Thursday will also be the day on which advertising screens will begin to be switched off between the hours of 23:45 and 06:00 in most cases to help save energy and reduce light pollution. 

Operators that fail to comply with the new rules will be subject to sanctions. 

Louvre-Lens celebrates tenth anniversary 

Sunday (December 4) will mark the tenth anniversary of the opening of the Louvre-Lens art museum. 

Lens is situated around 200km north of Paris in Pas-de-Calais, and its Louvre receives artworks from the Paris gallery to display on a medium or long-term basis.

The Lens museum was inaugurated on December 4, 2012, by then-President François Hollande, first lady Valérie Trierweiler, former Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti, the director of the Louvre Henri Loyrette, Lens mayor Guy Delcourt and former Prime Ministers Lionel Jospin and Pierre Mauroy. 

One of its key aims was to bring art to the local traditional mining community.

Read more: Louvre sister museum in old French mining city brings culture to all

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