France puts Seychelles on travel 'green list' – Hopes of tourism increase to the islands
Before Seychelles was moved to France's green list, leisure travel was not considered a compelling reason for travel for unvaccinated people. (Gerard Larose)
(Seychelles News Agency) - France has eased the health control measures at its borders for travellers going to and from Seychelles by moving the island nation from the orange COVID-19 list to the green list.
With the change that took effect on March 14, a traveller is only required to provide proof of being fully vaccinated upon arrival in France. Alternatively, if not vaccinated, a person needs to present a negative PCR test of fewer than 72 hours or a certificate of recovery from the virus of more than 11 days and less than six months.
French ambassador to Seychelles Dominique Mas outlined in a press release on Wednesday that the easing of health measures should help to increase the number of tourists from France coming to the archipelago in the western Indian Ocean.
"Unvaccinated people can now join us in Seychelles without having to justify the reason for their move, only a PCR test or a proof of recovery will be required at the entry to the French borders," said Mas.
Before Seychelles was moved to France's green list, leisure travel was not considered a compelling reason for travel for unvaccinated people.
The French government announced the change on the same day that Seychelles' health ministry said that vaccinated people can travel to the island nation without the need for a negative PCR test.
"With the lifting of the mandatory PCR test for vaccinated people going to Seychelles, which has just been decided by the Victoria health authorities, I am confident that this easing of the rules will encourage our compatriots to come and enjoy the hospitality of Seychelles," said Mas.
France established a traffic light colour-coded system in June 2021 by which it ranked countries according to their health situation in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Seychelles experienced a hike in COVID-19 positive cases in December attributed to the presence of the Omicron variant but since then numbers have decreased.
In the latest figures given by the Ministry of Health on March 14, Seychelles had a total of 231 active COVID-19 cases.
Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, was among 22 countries to be moved from the orange list to the green list.
The movement of French nationals to a foreign country or of foreign nationals to France is either prohibited or allowed under certain conditions if the said country is featured on France's orange list.
An unvaccinated person from an orange-listed country will have to continue to present a compelling reason to enter and "will still be able to be subjected to a random test upon arrival," according to the website of France's Ministry of the Interior. Travellers who test positive have to go into isolation.