Currently you need to be fully vaccinated to travel from the UK to France as the UK is on France’s Amber list.

If you’re travelling from Switzerland however, you do not need to be vaccinated as Switzerland is on the Green list.

What are the rules on flying from the UK to Switzerland (say Geneva), and then driving to France?

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    It would be much easier to just get vaccinated. It’s free and available everywhere in the UK.
    – JonathanReez
    Oct 31, 2021 at 20:38
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    Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – JonathanReez
    Nov 1, 2021 at 22:41

2 Answers 2


French law does not define what “coming from” (being “en provenance”) means. In particular, there is no questionnaire asking where you have been in the X days prior to entry, as there is some other countries and official websites make no mention of such a rule.

Intuitively, you are still “coming from” the UK if you are just having a layover somewhere. By the same token, driving from an airport very close to the border or spending exactly 24 hours in Switzerland shouldn't make a whole lot of difference. There is no hard and fast rule on how long you ought to stay in a green country to be considered as “coming from” that country but you should easily be able to decide for yourself if what you are doing is a genuine trip to Switzerland or just a “clever” way to go around the rules using a loophole and act accordingly. You also need to check Swiss rules.

Note that travel from amber list countries to France is not forbidden for unvaccinated people. It's restricted to “necessary travel” and requires testing and a quarantine. I assume you are considering a trip that is not allowed under those rules but it seems important to remember the distinction. Basically, if you are just trying to find a way to go to France for tourism, you may get away with it but you are clearly breaking the rules.

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    It might be worth asking on Law.SE what "coming from" means - specifically, whether travelling from an amber-list country to France via a green-list country counts as "coming from" the amber-list country, and how long you must remain in a green-list country before being admitted into France.
    – moonman239
    Oct 31, 2021 at 21:30
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    It's hard to see how travel through Switzerland to get to France is "breaking the rules" if there are no rules in France prohibiting it. Of course, I'm sure that's what they want you to think, but if that's not what they said...
    – FreeMan
    Nov 1, 2021 at 16:20
  • @FreeMan Why do you think there is no rule prohibiting it or a specific rule would be needed? Travelling from the UK without either a vaccine or a specific purpose is prohibited and that's exactly what the OP intends to do, whether transiting through Switzerland or not. Going through Switzerland is of course allowed but it doesn't change the rules that should apply. My point is that being “en provenance” is not limited to the last leg of a journey and does cover that scenario. It is also deliberately left to the appreciation of whoever might be in a position to enforce it.
    – Relaxed
    Nov 2, 2021 at 10:54

If you are not vaccinated, there are 2 possibilities:

  • You can't get vaccinated. Presumably that's for medical reason, but I am not aware of the regulations in your area, so there might be other reasons. In that case, the local authorities are probably providing you with some sort of paperwork explaining your situation. You might need to have it translated, and it might allow you to travel, possibly along with other requirements, such as regular testings for example. If you are in such a situation, you should update your question with information in that regard, so that someone more aware of the specific rules can give a proper answer.
  • You won't get vaccinated, because you don't want to. The French authorities have decided that they don't want you to travel in their country unless it is for a necessary travel. There's not much you can do about it. (Tourism is not "necessary", needless to say).

As with most laws ans regulation, any obvious attempt at a loophole is automatically closed, so travelling through another country doesn't magically make you not coming from the UK. (As a rule of thumb, that includes any explanation that includes the words not technically)

  • AFAIK something like 0.01% of the population is actually ineligible. Some people are allergic to PEG which is in Pfizer but those people can get the Astrazeneca vaccine (or vice versa, if allergic to Astrazeneca). In the US those allergic to Pfizer can get a shot of J&J (or vice versa). Its now also approved for pregnant women.
    – JonathanReez
    Nov 1, 2021 at 23:47

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