‘Very difficult’: Traffic warning for first weekend of French holidays

Traffic jams expected across the country with second-home hotspots in particular set to see delays

If you are planning to drive this weekend, factor in the extra traffic
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Much of France is expected to see heavy traffic this weekend as the summer holidays officially get under way.

Paris and the surrounding area are expected to be especially bad on Friday (July 7), says France’s traffic forecasters Bison Futé.

It has issued a red warning - the second-highest level - for roads heading away from the French capital.

The rest of the country has been given an orange warning - the second-highest - for roads leading away from major population areas.

On Saturday, the red warning is lifted for Greater Paris but will be in place in Brittany, Normandy, and many departments to the north and south of the capital.

Roads entering larger cities are not expected to see any additional traffic throughout the weekend, however.

Motorists seeking sunny skies

On Friday, roads leaving Paris are expected to start facing congestion “from late morning, and particularly towards the afternoon”, said Bison Futé.

The A10 and A6 Motorways leaving the city are expected to see the brunt of the traffic, particularly with congestion around their toll gates.

On top of this, Paris’ ring road will see heavy traffic, as motorists navigate the outskirts of the city.

Afternoon traffic, exacerbated by commuters as well as holidaymakers, could “extend well into the evening”, the traffic site said.

#InfoTrafic #DépartVacances | Premiers gros départs ce week-end du 07 Juillet avec le début des vacances d'été en France. D’importants flux migratoires prévus sur les grands axes du pays notamment vendredi et samedi. Nos conseils et précisions ici➡️https://t.co/mfOdNTtMGb pic.twitter.com/TMVMZb8z9e

— Bison Futé (@BisonFute_MT) July 5, 2023

Traffic warnings across the country continue on Saturday, but the areas at highest risk are Brittany, Normandy, parts of the Centre-Val de Loire and Hauts-de-France.

This is due to a continuing influx of visitors to the region, coming to spend summer at tourist destinations or in second homes.

Heavy traffic on the A6 and A10 motorways is also expected, particularly around mid-morning.

Outside of the north of France, the A7 (between Lyon and the south of France) is expected to be saturated southbound on both days, as drivers from all over France congregate on the road as they head towards the Mediterranean.

By Sunday, traffic levels will return to normal, however preliminary warnings for almost all weekends of the summer holiday season (July and August) are in place.

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