It was just over a year ago that I cancelled my summer 2020 bicycling trip to France due to Covid. At the time few of us realized how the coronavirus would impact our lives. I figured this trip delay was just temporary and that I’d soon be rescheduling it for the fall. Obviously that never happened. Here we are, a year later and Americans are still not able to fly to France or many other destinations in Europe.
But last week, the first glimmers of hope in more than a year appeared with the announcement that French borders would reopen soon. Assuming there are no dramatic increases in Covid levels, France is set to reopen its borders to fully vaccinated international travelers, including Americans starting June 9, just 36 days from now. The only details regarding how this will work is that visitors will be required to show either a vaccine certificate or proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test result.
While the prospect of travel to France for the first time since March 2020 is very exciting, it’s important to note that this is an ongoing evolving situation with little information available on documentation that will be needed and where it will be issued. As of today, there’s no approved plan in either the US or France regarding documents we will need to travel. While it’s certain that international travelers will need valid government issued health documents, what satisfies as “valid” for each country of entry has yet to be determined.
The bottom line, international travel prospects are looking up, but it’s likely that travel requirements and policies will be evolving in the upcoming months. This could make it challenging to choose a date for travel as well as making reservations for necessary services. Assuming that the border reopening goes forward as planned, travelers will also have to deal with changes in support services available to cyclists along major cycling routes. Many businesses have been closed or operating on limited schedules since spring, 2020 and it may take time for them to reopen. This could also complicate planning for those hoping to take a summer or fall 2021 cycling trip to France.
Beginning mid-May, I’ll begin a new series on my favorite routes to consider for a 2022 post-Covid bicycling trip in France. Each post will include several of the best resources to jumpstart your trip planning. For those pioneers interested in planning a trip this year, I’ll try to keep you up to date on travel requirements to France, as they evolve.
In the meantime, watch my instagram link (@francebybike) for photo teasers and hints of upcoming featured routes!