France digital health pass requests are temporarily closed
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Editor’s Note: This article is regularly updated with new information.
Since November 2, the application process for Americans wishing to obtain the French health passport has been closed. Upon arrival at France, travelers are advised to take a negative antigen or PCR test to obtain a 72 hour pass.
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Since the announcement of the French health pass also known as the “sanitary pass,” the method of obtaining the pass has changed four times, the most recent of which temporarily barred Americans from qualifying. vaccination obligation to go virtually anywhere indoors in France until at least July 2022.
What brought us here
What initially seemed like a fairly straightforward process has turned into a permanent mess for travelers keen to fill up on croissants in Paris.
In July, the U.S. Embassy in France advised vaccinated Americans traveling to France to bring their CDC-issued vaccination card to a French pharmacy to convert it to an online French vaccination card system. Following this advice, many TPG readers said that French pharmacists either refused to help them or had no idea what they were talking about (including one who claimed that a pharmacist had cursed him at such a request) .
In light of the complications, the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and the Embassy issued updated guidelines in early August advising travelers to submit their health card applications by email:
“In accordance with the decision of the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron, we have set up with the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs a specific device allowing non-EU tourists already in France to receive a QR code which will be valid as French COVID certificate, ”Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, French Minister of State for Tourism, French Nationals Abroad and La Francophonie, said in a press release on August 9. “Foreign tourists can apply. To request a QR code, simply send us an email with proof of vaccination, ID, the downloadable request form and your plane ticket.
On August 27, they unveiled what was supposed to be a more streamlined online application system through two online applications – one for French nationals residing or vaccinated abroad and one for everyone, including non-European foreign nationals and tourists.
However, because they were presumably inundated with requests from tourists wishing to visit (over 4.5 million requests to date), the French government then announced a new online request for “non-European foreigners” to request a visit. conversion of a foreign vaccination. French health card certificate. But there was a catch: requests were only processed for travelers already in France or planning to be in the next few days.
Essentially, travelers were told not to expect to receive the health pass before their trip, even though it was necessary to take advantage of most activities in France. As you can imagine, this created a lot of problems. Many TPG readers have all detailed their unique proofs with the second and third iterations.
Applications are now closed to American travelers
This brings us to the last week of late October, when the online application portal popped up to prevent any submission of applications outside of French nationals.
The French Embassy in Washington, DC seemed just as baffled as the rest of us.
“I think there was a misunderstanding. The consulate here has NOTHING TO DO with the QR Code applications, which are all centralized in Paris, ”an embassy spokesperson said by email on November 1. “There has been no change in the procedures, and your readers just have to apply at the links below and in a few days they will have a response.
The aforementioned “corrected” link was anything but – it just asked you to apply for the pass as if you were a French national, which was of no use to anyone other than the French.
At this point, a second embassy reporter confirmed that the proceedings were temporarily halted on October 31.
“They are not taking new requests,” the embassy said by telephone on Nov. 1. “We always advise them to fly to France and get a temporary QR code that could be generated in a pharmacy.”
The spokesperson was referring to submitting a negative COVID-19 test for a temporary pass instead of a health pass. When the application process was online, such a temporary pass was a potential security. But right now, it’s the only option for Americans traveling to France who don’t yet have a valid health card.
“This system is open to non-European foreigners, tourists and students enrolled in French higher education establishments already in France, arriving for the start of the school year, or before September 5 for non-student foreigners,” said the embassy. noted October 5. “Requests for subsequent arrivals will be dealt with at a later date. “
When I cross-checked with the first embassy employee who suggested some sort of “misunderstanding”, I got this response: “Yes, you are right, this is the change that has just been made.”
Still confused? U.S. too.
Right now, American travelers should expect to have to go through the process of obtaining a health passport once already in France, as the app is closed to non-French nationals. However, be aware that it is risky to go there without the guarantee of being able to obtain the temporary health pass necessary to participate in many indoor activities.
Featured photo of visitors presenting their digital health pass at the Gaumont Multiplex Odyseum cinema in Montpellier, France, by Pascal Guyot / AFP via Getty Images.
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