French Visa Requirements
Before you travel to France you need to make sure you are aware of any visa requirements to enter the country. We will take you through the basics so you don’t run into any troubles before you leave the airport. If you are wondering do you need a visa to go to France, this will depend on your nationality. This page also has some general travel tips about your travel documents and making sure they are safe.
Do you need a visa to go to France?
Travelers to France from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the USA that are staying less than 90 days do not need a visa prior to arrival. Instead, you will present your passport as you enter and it will be stamped.
With the first stage of Brexit now complete, there are no changes for citizens of the United Kingdom with regards to travel in and out of the EU. However, from January 01 2021 new rules will come into effect. Click here to learn more and keep up to date with the latest developments.
The Schengen Zone
France is part of what is known as the Schengen zone which is a group of 26 countries that, in effect, abolished their internal borders. As a result, once you are in the Schengen Zone you are free to travel between the member countries. The zone includes Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.
The citizens of many countries are able to visit the Schengen Zone without needing to apply for a visa before they travel. The full list of countries can be found here. If, however, your country is not on this list you will need to apply for a visa through the French embassy in your country before you travel. This is also shown in the link above.
If you are planning to stay in the Schengen Zone for more than 90 days in 180 you will need to apply for a visa before you arrive. Check with the French embassy in your country to check the requirements.
European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS)
A new scheme called the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) will commence at the end of 2022. It will only apply to travelers to the Schengen Zone who currently do not require a visa. This new scheme is not a visa but rather a check that you are a fit and proper person to enter the zone. This is similar to the US Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA). As a result of the new scheme, you will be required to apply online for authorization prior to travel. At the present time, it is expected that the process will take about 10 minutes and cost €7.
This website has lots of information about the Schengen Zone to help with any more detailed information.
A valid passport is required for any international travel so make sure you have yours well in advance of your trip. It is generally recommended you have at least 6 months until the expiry of your passport left at the end of your trip. For example, if your holiday ends on 30 June your passport should not expire before 31 December in that same year. One of the requirements to enter the Schengen Zone is that you have at least 3 months left on your passport from the end of your trip. If you do not have the required validity left on it you will be denied entry into the country you wish to travel to and may not even be able to board the flight.
While you are away your passport becomes a critical piece of documentation so a few extra precautions are worth it to keep it safe. The last thing you want to do on your holiday is spending hours or days getting a new passport. It is suggested that you take a copy or photo of your passport in the event it is lost and consider carrying a couple of passport photos with you should your passport get lost. Where possible we generally put ours in a hotel safe and don’t carry it with us unless it is necessary.
Getting consular assistance
If you are unfortunate enough to have your passport stolen or if it is lost the embassy of your country is the first point of contact. Listed below are details of foreign embassies in France for a range of countries. Many countries also provide online information specific to their citizens, details of which are also listed below.
4 rue Jean Ray
75015, Paris France
phone. 01 40 59 33 00
Travel advice for Australian citizens: www.smartraveller.gov.au
130 rue de Grenelle
75007, Paris, France
phone. 01 44 43 29 02
3, place de la Bourse
69002, Lyon, France
phone. 09 62 56 59 01
59 allées Jean-Jaurés
31000, Toulouse, France
phone. 05 67 31 45 53
Travel advice for Canadian citizens: www.travel.gc.ca
12 avenue Foche
75116, Paris, France
phone. 01 44 17 67 00
email. contact form on website
69 avenue du Roi Albert
06400, Cannes, France
phone. 06 77 69 14 36
Gare Maritime Sud
50100, Cherbourg, France
phone. 02 33 44 11 11
158 avenue Roger Salengro
69100, Villeurbanne, France
phone. 06 7040 14 01
Travel advice for Irish citizens: www.dfa.ie/travel-advice
New Zealand Embassy
103, rue de Grenelle
75007, Paris, France
phone. 01 45 01 43 43
Travel advice for New Zealand citizens: www.safetravel.govt.nz
United Kingdom Embassy
35 rue du Faubourg Sainte-Honoré
75383, Paris, France
phone. 01 44 51 31 00
email. contact form on website
Address not provided
phone. 05 57 22 21 10
10 place de Marseille-La Joliette
13002, Marseille, France
phone. 04 91 15 72 10
Travel advice for UK citizens: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
United States of America Embassy
2 avenue Gabriel
75008, Paris, France
phone. 01 43 12 22 22
Travel advice for citizens of the USA: www.travel.state.gov