Air Caraïbes at L’Esperance Airport in Grand Case.
MARIGOT–The French Overseas Ministry under new Minister Sébastien Lecornu has announced new COVID-19 provisions that specify terms and conditions for travel between France and its overseas territories.
For passengers wishing to travel to an overseas territory, travellers over 11 years old will have to produce a negative COVID-19 test carried out within 72 hours before boarding. This negative result is a pledge of security: it is mandatory and will be requested at boarding.
Passengers will also have to present a sworn statement that they have no symptoms and are not aware of having been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 within 14 days prior to the flight. From July 18, the airline will deny boarding to passengers travelling to an overseas territory who do not present either of these documents.
Passengers bound for French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St. Martin, St. Barthélemy, St. Pierre and Miquelon, Réunion and Mayotte are no longer subject to mandatory quarantine upon arrival. However, the public authorities recommend that the persons concerned scrupulously respect barrier/hand-sanitation measures, avoid public gatherings and busy public places, wear a mask during this period and undergo screening seven days after arrival.
These are important measures that make it possible to detect possible asymptomatic cases and minimise the risk of spreading the virus. For Pacific communities, specific rules – taken by local authorities – apply to healthcare reception.
In addition, for passengers coming from French Guiana or Mayotte, travellers coming from, or going to these areas of active virus circulation should continue to justify an overriding reason for travel. Pre-board testing is mandatory for passengers arriving from French Guiana and Mayotte where the virus is actively circulating, and who travel directly to another overseas territory where the virus does not circulate.
Upon arrival, they may be prescribed a quarantine measure by the Préfet of the territory (seven days) in order to further reduce the risk of contamination for people who could be in the incubation phase of the virus and, therefore, not detectable by the screening test. The rule for quarantine is to isolate oneself in one’s home, protect vulnerable people and loved ones, by refusing all contact and systematically using barrier gestures.
For passengers wishing to travel to France from an overseas territory, it is no longer necessary to justify a compelling reason to travel to mainland France. However, certain health conditions remain, such as temperature control before boarding and wearing a mask in the terminal and on the plane. Travellers must also complete a sworn statement that they do not have COVID-19.
In special cases for passengers coming from Mayotte and French Guiana to France, travellers coming from or going to these areas of active virus circulation should continue to show compelling reasons for travel. Under the decree of July 10, the government chose not to impose a test before boarding for flights from Mayotte and French Guiana to France, in order to not saturate the testing capacities of these territories and not to impose more stringent constraints against the movement between those territories and France.
In the absence of a pre-boarding test, 14 home tests will be recommended to them on arrival in France to protect their loved ones and their environment.