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France eases COVID-19 restrictions for vaccinated travelers from Britain

France eases COVID-19 restrictions for vaccinated travelers from Britain
Masked travelers are seen at Paris' Charles de Gaulle International Airport. France is one of the largest markets for British tourists, accounting for 14% of all overseas visitors. British tourism to France generated nearly $70 billion per year prior to the pandemic. File Photo by Yoan Valat/EPA-EFE

Jan. 13 (UPI) -- The French government on Thursday said it's easing travel restrictions for passengers from Britain who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, lifting rules that were put in place about a month ago.

In December, the government required all travelers from Britain to have a valid reason for entering France and mandated that they isolate for 48 hours, even if they were vaccinated.

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The move was a response to an explosion in COVID-19 cases in Britain driven by the Omicron variant.

Beginning Friday, British travelers will no longer have to self-isolate or show proof that their trip is essential.

However, British visitors still must show proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 24 hours of their arrival.

Prime Minister Jean Castex's office said the rule change was prompted by the predominance of the variant in both countries.

The World Travel and Tourism Council has said that once a variant reaches an endemic stage, border restrictions are no longer useful.

France is one of the largest markets for British tourists, accounting for 14% of all overseas visitors. British tourism to France generated nearly $70 billion per year prior to the pandemic.

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