France will soon begin paying part of people’s clothing repair bills

It is part of a drive to cut waste, reduce CO2 emissions and help climate change

A woman repairing old denim clothes
You will soon be able to get a government-supported bonus to repair your clothes and shoes in France
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From fixing a hole in a favourite jumper to replacing the zip on an old pair of trousers, people in France will be handed a financial incentive to repair rather than replace worn-out clothing.

It will be in the form of money off clothing and shoe repair bills, announced Bérangère Couillard, France’s Secretary of State for Ecology.

Beginning in October, consumers will be able to get a reduction of up to €25, depending on the repair.

For example:

Bonus in euros



Unravelled seam on an unlined garment


A hole, snag or tear in an item of clothing or a broken heel


To glue a shoe sole

8 - 15

To repair a zip

10 - 25

Mend a lining


Repair a leather shoe

Why is the bonus being introduced?

The move is part of a bid to tackle the problem of so-called fast fashion, which is the high turnover of clothes in our wardrobes.

That is because producing clothes uses large amounts of natural resources and creates greenhouse gases that are responsible for climate change.

The fashion industry is responsible for 10% of annual global carbon emissions, more than all international flights and maritime shipping combined, according to the World Bank.

Repairing rather than replacing, therefore, seeks to reduce emissions by cutting demand for new clothing to be produced.

The bonus was laid out in the anti-waste law for a circular economy, passed on February 10 2020.

The government wants to increase by 35% the volume of repaired clothes and shoes in France by 2028.

According to Ms Couillard, the French “throw away 700,000 tons of clothing every year,” two-thirds of which “end up in landfill”.

How can I benefit?

The bonus will apply to all clothes and shoes, except underwear and household linen. It will only cover repairs, not adjustments.

Tailors and cobblers wishing to receive the bonus must be accredited by the Refashion organisation, which is co-managing the measure with the government. Any company offering a clothing and/or shoe repair service can ask for accreditation.

According to the French website Merci pour L’Info currently 250 companies have requested accreditation. The government hopes that 500 requests, from companies, at-home repairers and branded item repair services, will be submitted before mid-October.

It is hoped that enough clothing and shoe repair services across France will be accredited by the autumn so that no one has to travel 50 to 100 km to have their clothes repaired.

Read more: France doubles cash bonus for repairing appliances. How can I benefit?

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