France bans tourists from the UK to enter France unless there is a compelling reason.

This French holiday special features the Holiday Guru answering questions on flight connections, Eurostar travel, and cancelling ski holidays.

Q. Q. We have booked a January ski vacation in Morzine. What should I do now? Do I have the right to a refund

Sylvia Simpson, via email.

No go: The French ban on UK visitors is a bitter blow for those who’ve booked ski trips. Pictured is a skier in the French Alps

No go: The French ban on UK visitors is a bitter blow for those who’ve booked ski trips. This is a photo of a French skier skiing in the French Alps.

A. This depends on whether you booked the chalet and flights at the same time as a ‘package’ holiday or not.

If you did, you will be due a full refund within 14 days of the holiday being cancelled, as it will be closer to the date of departure — usually about two/three weeks beforehand — if the French travel ban on British visitors, which began on December 17, continues. Under the Package Travel Regulations (2018), this is law.

You will be required to notify the chalet provider if the flights and chalet were booked separately. This decision is up to the provider, but most will be reasonable.

Different airlines have different cancellation policies. For example, easyJet offers the option to move your flight free of charge to another date. BA provides a voucher.

Q. We were planning to visit my brother’s family in Cannes over Christmas. Is this possible?

Edward Chase, via email.

A. No. The new French rules state that you must have a ‘compelling reason’ to travel from the UK to France. These include being a French citizen, a student enrolled in France, or a spouse or child of a French citizen — and a negative Covid result taken within 24 hours of travel will be required. You must be self-isolated for 48 hours upon arrival. After that, a negative antigen or PCR test will be required.

Compassionate ‘compelling reasons’ include the death of a close family member or a terminal prognosis.

The Holiday Guru tells one reader that their trip to Cannes (pictured) isn't likely to go ahead this winter

One reader is told by The Holiday Guru that their trip (pictured) to Cannes won’t be happening this winter. 

Q. I have a connection via Paris to Buenos Aires — what happens now? Do I have the right to travel?

Jen Ballard, via email.

A. You can travel as long as your connection is less than 24 hours.

Q. We have a second home in Provence and were planning to drive there next week for Christmas and the New Year — what are the rules? If we are the owners of property, surely we could go?

Email to Mr. and Mrs Johnston

A. Sorry, no. As above, you must have a ‘compelling reason’ and home ownership does not count. 

Q. Q.

Jan Lewis, via email.

A. Yes. It should, as France is not your final destination. Also, you’ll be transiting through France for less than 24hrs. Same applies to services to Amsterdam.

Holiday Guru reports that UK citizens are permitted to travel on Eurostar (pictured) to France if France does not end up being their final destination. 

Q. My partner and I booked flights from Edinburgh to Paris for a weekend away in late January to celebrate an anniversary — should we accept a voucher or postpone now?

Damian Kenworthy, via email.

A. Keep your eyes on the prize. The French ban could be lifted sooner than expected. In this case, the airline might cancel your flight. Ryanair and easyJet are common examples.

This would allow you to receive a full refund. You could also claim a coupon or delay your flight if the flight is cancelled.

Q. I have been fully vaccinated. Is the French rule still in effect?

Sally Somerville via email

A. Yes — your vaccination status makes no difference for travel to France. 

Q. Q. We should cancel our trip so that we can return to home.

Pete Kiddle, via email.

A. You don’t have to hurry back. You can return on the original date.


For advice and guidance, contact the Holiday Guru. Email