Author Archives: Marion Pichardie

France: What is a ‘Pass sanitaire ?’

France would like to establish a “pass sanitaire” beginning of June 2021.

Even though no official date has been announced regarding the launching of such certificate in France, the government has planned to use it as a proof of vaccination against Covid-19, a natural immunity after being ill or a negative test result. Those who wish to access crowded events of more than 1000 people such as festivals or concerts will have to show their “pass sanitaire.”

This certificate would be in line with the EU-Wide “Green Digital Certificate” approved by the Europpean Parliament on 29 April. This should notably allow more secured travels within the Europpean Union.

On May 3, The Covid Scientific Council has announced being in favor of a “pass sanitaire” in France: “[this would be] used temporarily and exceptionally to allow people to go back to an almost normal life while minimising the risk of contamination.”

Photo by Petr Sevcovic on Unsplash

The certificates that compose the “pass sanitaire” can be integrated as a numerical format on the application TousAntiCovid, unveiled on 19 April, but will also be available as a PDF and paper format.

French President Emmanuel Macron assured that the “pass sanitaire” will “never be a right of access that differentiates French people. It will not be mandatory to access places of everyday life such as restaurants, theatres, cinemas or to visit friends.”

France continues to discuss the possible establishment of such certificate on its territory.

Want to read more global COVID-19 news? Check out our interactive map.

Photo by Fran Boloni on Unsplash

‘Covid passport’: What are the plans for the UK and Europe?

A “Covid passport” is likely to be in place before the summer, notably in the UK and France.

Governments in Europe are actively looking at how people could easily show their Covid status in order to access big events and, in the long-term, allow international travels in the best conditions.

What’s the situation in the UK?

A “Covid passport” would be a record of whether a person has been vaccinated, recently tested negative or has natural immunity after being ill with Covid-19.

Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the UK are currently working together in order to agree on a “consistent approach.”

The government plans to test the idea of a covid passport to allow people to return to large events, including concerts, theatres, nightclubs and sports events in England.

“This Covid passport is unavoidable to come back to a normal life, to go back to crowded places or to travel without being scared to be infected or infect others.” says Wendy from London, 29.

Photo by Colin Lloyd on Unsplash

During the Brit Awards at the London’s O2 Arena that will take place on 11 May, the 4000 people attending won’t have to wear a mask or be socially distanced but will have the obligation to present a negative Covid test result.

However, it has been announced that a Covid passport will never be required in settings such as essential shops or public transports.

What about the rest of Europe?

While a proof of a negative test is already required for international travels, Europpean officials have announced plans for an EU-wide “Green Digital Certificate” that would allow people to travel freely within the Europpean Union.

The holders of such certificate “should not be subjected to complimentary travel restrictions such as quarantining or Covid 19 tests” said the French parliament.

“All countries should try their maximum to agree among themselves and have a Covid passport that would be valid everywhere in the world.” points out Christophe from France, 59.

Photo by Krzysztof Hepner on Unsplash

At this moment, only Denmark has actively put in place their “Coronapass” since early April 2021. Danish people have to show the proof that they have either been vaccinated, immunised after being ill with Covid 19 or have been tested negative in the last 72 hours before being allowed in restaurants, bars, museums, stadiums, as well as hair salons or driving schools.

“The Covid passport won’t only be useful for leisure activities but will also make working life easier. For example, I’m a high school teacher and it’s a nightmare to work in those conditions. If such passports could apply to more places, that would make the teaching environment more efficient and comfortable to work in, just like it used to be.” Says Anastasia from France, 30.

Front image: COVID-19 Vaccination Passport, Photo by Lukas on Unsplash

Covid 19 conditions and vaccins: what do young french people think?

Photo by Matese Fields on Unsplash

While England’s condition is improving, in France (like in many other countries), young people feel like they are trapped by the current covid 19 situation, with a part of their youth “stolen.” Nonetheless, motivation, patience and hope are well present, with the vaccinations appearing as the key to get their normal life back.

“It’s true that being young now means not being able to plan and evolve professionally like we would in normal conditions. We are also very limited in the number of people we meet and places we can visit. And I think travelling and meeting people is an essential part of the health and flourishment of young people.” Tells Charlène, 26.

Photo by Elevate on Unsplash

“That’s true that we feel that we can’t live our life at the moment, but if making the sacrifice to not go out or see friends and families for a while means that it can help us get out of this pandemic, we have to do it and be patient.” Adds Jérémy, 25.

“And we are lucky to be in France during those difficult times. Help is given to young people or disadvantaged people for example. Our living conditions are much better than in other countries.” says Charlène.

Photo by Chris Karidis on Unsplash

As the vaccines arrive, many young people see the end of this dark period approaching.

“We have to get vaccinated to stop the pandemic, protect ourselves and the others.” mentions Jérémy.

“It’s a godsend. We need it to get our normal life back. Vaccins before have always proved to be efficient, why not that one?” points out Charlène.

Photo by Mat Napo on Unsplash

When seeing the massive vaccinations in England and the number of infected people decreasing, hope among young people arise even more.

“English people have started ahead of us. And seeing the efficiency of the vaccins proves us that it will do the same thing in France when we get to their point.” Thinks Christophe, 27.

Jérémy concludes: “France is a bit too passive in my opinion, we were slow to react compared to English people, but we are getting there. We’ll see in the next few weeks…”

Want to read more global COVID-19 news? Check out our interactive map.

Food in London: travel without taking the plane

Photo by Alva Pratt on Unsplash

It now has been a year since lockdown started for the first time in the UK due to the Coronavirus pandemic. It forced the majority of us to stay at home for a long period of time, preventing us from seeing friends and family as well as…travelling.

Even though it is still quite difficult to go anywhere at the moment, we are lucky to live in a city like London: there is no better place in Europe to find all kinds of food. Eating is one of the best ways to feel in another part of the world and to discover other cultures (or even feel like home when you are not originally from England).

With the restaurants re-opening on the 12th April, we provide you with the top 4 to try and feel in another part of the world.

Get rid of the anxiety to not be able to move far away easily!

Also watch Roots and culture: the power of food

Korea

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Korean culture and food have grown in popularity in the recent years. Eating a Korean meal means warmth and a great friendly atmosphere as the food is usually placed in the centre of the table and not in individual plates so everyone can serve themselves. You will be able to experience the delicious, varied and balanced Korean diet, from Bulgogi and Kimchi to Japchae and Bibimbap.

Go to Gogi Korean bar and Grill at 451 Edgware Road W2 1TH

Italy

Photo by Jakub Kapusna on unsplash

Known for its great cuisine, it is no wonder that Italian food is one of the most popular type in the world. Meals are a big event in Italy where several dishes (up to 6) are served one after the other (of course in London, you would mostly order one dish and a dessert). Their expertise in the making of pasta and pizza is undeniable and praised by many but there is so much more to Italian cuisine! Enjoy Pollo alla Milanese (Pan-fried chicken breast with spaghetti and tomato sauce), risotto or bruschetta.

Try out La Divina 134 Upper St, Islington N1 1QP

China

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Chinese food is known worldwide and is very popular. In China, dishes would be put on a round and moving surface in the middle of the table so people can turn it to reach the plate they want (but in London, dishes are usually simply put in the centre of the table). Beyond the traditional spring rolls and Cantonese rice, discover the specialty of the restaurant recommended below, dumplings and buns, delicious dishes among many that you can eat traditionally with chopsticks.

Go to Xi Home Dumplings and buns at 43 Chandos Place Covent Garden WC2N4HS

Mexico

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Want some more latino and tropical vibes? Head out to a Mexican restaurant where avocado is king and taste typical dishes such as burritos, tacos and enchiladas. With colourful restaurants and engaging music, you sure will enjoy your evening. Due to centuries of Spanish influence, Mexican people usually tend to eat late: 1.30-4pm for lunch, (which is the most consistent meal of the day) and 8-9pm for dinner, which consist of a lighter meal (usually tacos and soup).

Taste Mexico at Wahaca Oxford circus at 26-28 Great Portland St, Fitzrovia W1W 8QT