SNCF workers are expected to strike across the country on Wednesday (July 6), over “growing inflation and the absence of a general pay rise since 2014”.
It is expected that this strike will particularly affect TGV Inoui, Intercités and Ouigo services, although finer details have not yet been published.
Passengers are advised to avoid travelling at rush hour if possible, or to take a bus.
Cabinet reshuffle: new government ministers appointed
A cabinet reshuffle is taking place today (July 4) in France, with a first Conseil des ministres cabinet meeting expected to be held this afternoon.
Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne has been working with President Emmanuel Macron over the weekend to decide on changes to the composition of the new government.
Former health minister Olivier Véran has already been named as the government’s official spokesperson, as Olivia Grégoire is moved to a ministerial post working with small and medium-sized businesses and artisans.
Three ministers lost their seats in the recent legislative elections and so must be replaced. They are Health Minister Brigitte Bourguignon, Minister of the Sea Justine Benin and Ecological Transition Minister Amélie de Montchalin.
Yaël Braun-Pivet, who was serving as minister of the overseas territories, will also have to give up this role, as she has been appointed president of the Assemblée nationale.
There will be about 30 ministers in the cabinet, with MPs from the Macron-affiliated MoDem and Horizon parties joining those from Renaissance (formerly La République en Marche !).
President Macron wants all of his ministers to work on tackling the effects of soaring inflation on French spending power, and the new bill aimed at protecting the population from rising prices should be presented to the cabinet this week.
Hot weather ahead this week
Two weeks after the heatwave which hit France in June, temperature records are set to be broken once again in the south east of the country this week.
Some areas could see temperatures of 40C, according to BFMTV, and in the rest of France the hot weather will be accompanied by rain and storms.
Local weather service Météo Languedoc predicts that Nîmes will be most acutely affected by the heat, especially on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
National weather forecasting service Météo France is also predicting temperatures of between 35C and 40C in the area.
Fête du cinéma 2022 – tickets at €4
France’s annual Fête du cinéma has begun, and will last until this Wednesday (July 6), with many cinemas offering tickets for just €4.
Some of the films which you can enjoy at this reduced price include the Baz Luhrmann biopic Elvis with Austin Butler and Tom Hanks, Toy Story spin off Lightyear (Buzz l’Éclair in French), French comedies Irréductible and Coupez, and Top Gun: Maverick.
The €4 offer does not include tickets for 3D screenings or other special events.
Black boxes in all new cars from now on
From Wednesday (July 6), new cars manufactured in the EU will all need to be fitted with a black box, which will record details of the vehicle’s movements including speed, acceleration, braking and whether or not seat belts are being worn.
This information will only be used in the case of a collision, where the 30 seconds before and the 10 seconds after impact will be stored and used by the authorities trying to determine what happened.
The boxes do not record any personal data on the driver or passengers, such as sounds coming from inside the car.
Tour de France arrives on French soil
After its first stages in Denmark, this year’s Tour de France will arrive in Hauts-de-France this week.
The racers will spend today (July 4) travelling, before cycling from Dunkirk to Calais tomorrow.
Wednesday will see the race pass from Lille Métropole to Arenburg Porte du Hainaut, Thursday from Binche to Longwy and Friday from Tomblaine to La Super Planche des Belles Filles.
Dutch racer Dylan Groenewegen won the third stage of the Tour yesterday (July 3), but the yellow jersey will be brought to France by the Belgian Wout van Aert.
The school summer holidays begin in France
School pupils across France will be breaking up for their summer holidays on Thursday (July 7).
Traffic is expected to be heavy on Friday and very heavy on Saturday, as families set off for their summer breaks.
The school holidays will also see the C’est mon patrimoine ! scheme begin. This programme offers young people the opportunity to visit France’s heritage sites, taking part in workshops, theatre events and other cultural activities while they are off school.
This year, more than 200 venues are collaborating with education institutions to put events on for pupils.
You can find out more here.