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2 of August 2021

Expatriates: How to get a Covid Health Pass in France

In his televised address on 12 July 2021, French President Emmanuel Macron announced the introduction of a health pass for access to certain places. What are these places? How does the health pass work if you are an expatriate?

Management Mobility Consulting gives you all the information you need here.


What is a health pass?


The health pass is a document containing a QR Code indicating that its owner has:


● Been fully vaccinated (2 doses) against the Covid-19 virus. Beware in France, it is necessary to wait 1 week after the last dose of Pfizer, Moderna or AstraZeneca vaccines and 28 days for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

● Contracted the virus and recovered from it

● Performed a negative PCR or antigenic test no more than 48 hours old.


Implementation dates


This health pass is already compulsory since 21 July 2021 for places of entertainment hosting more than 50 people. Here is a non-exhaustive list:

- Museums

- Theatres

- Cinemas

- Concert halls

- Nightclubs

- Open air festivals

- Sports halls

- Amusement parks

- Libraries

- Swimming pools

- Tourist attractions


The health pass is extended from 9 August to cafés, restaurants and bars indoors AND outdoors, as well as to the following means of transport: long-distance buses and trains (TGV and Intercity), domestic flights. 

As regards shopping centres with a surface area of more than 20,000m², it is the prefects who will decide whether or not to impose the health pass to go there.

These decisions will be based on the rate of Covid-19 cases in each French department.


In addition, health professionals are required to be vaccinated by 15 September at the latest.


Finally, the extension for adolescents aged 12 to 17 is planned for 30 September 2021. Note: it is not currently compulsory in schools.


The health pass has been put in place in order to fight against the 4th wave of Covid-19 which affects France with the Delta variant. If it is confirmed by the Constitutional Council, which will examine it on 5 August, it will remain in force until 15 November 2021.


The modalities for EU expatriates


How does the health pass work for expatriates who will be visiting France in the next few days, weeks or months?


If you come from a member state of the European Union, you can present a Covid-19 certificate in digital format or an approved European health certificate proving your vaccination or showing a negative PCR or antigen test.


Note: if your certificate has a European flag, this means that it is recognised in France in the same way as French certificates.


Conditions for the rest of the world


Depending on the country, the rules are not identical. We will explain them to you.


1 - You come from the United States


For American expatriates, the CDC vaccination card is not compatible with the French health pass system.

As the French government has not ruled on the conditions of access to France, it is recommended that you contact the US embassy in France.


2 - You are an expatriate from the UK


The French embassy has confirmed that the NHS certificate is valid on the mobile app or in print. You can also show your NHS letter.


Please note: the TousAntiCovid mobile application in France does not allow you to read the NHS certificate.


3 - You are from another country


We advise you to contact your embassy to find out the procedures, which are specific to each country and according to its classification as a green, orange or red zone.


Where to get vaccinated in France?


In France, you can have a PCR or antigenic test in pharmacies or medical establishments by appointment. If you are an expatriate in France and are not vaccinated, it is therefore recommended that you make an appointment in advance to have access to all the places listed above.

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