Most Covid-19 test requirements have been dropped, but if you still need one, testing is easy and results are fast. If you are planning a trip to Paris, where can you get a Covid-19 test to return home and what are the requirements? I’ll explain how to get a Covid test in Paris to return to the United States or other countries, and also how much Covid-19 tests cost in France, plus where you can get a Covid-19 test in Paris.
Current Covid-19 Travel Rules in France
Update June 12, 2022: As of midnight on June 12, 2022, the United States will no longer require a negative Covid-19 test result for travelers flying into the U.S. If you are traveling elsewhere, please check with your local authorities, airline, or cruise ship for current requirements.
Update February 12, 2022: To enter France from any EU member state, fully vaccinated travelers do not need to show a negative test result before or upon arrival, according to the French government as of February 12, 2022. (Still current as of April 22, 2022.)
Unvaccinated travelers must present a negative test to enter France, but if the traveler is from a designated green country, they won’t have to isolate or quarantine. Unvaccinated travelers from “orange” countries must have a valid reason for entering the country, submit to a random test, and self-isolate.
We’ll cover the three main areas where you can get a Covid-19 test in Paris:
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Labs, Private Clinics, or Pop-Up Testing Sites
Appointment Often Required | Convenient | Central Locations
It’s hard not to notice one of the many new testing centers in Paris since there are even pop-up testing sites throughout the city. Whether you go to a lab or a new testing site, appointments are often required. You’ll want to check the hours of operation and appointment requirements well ahead of when you need your test.
The French government has published a list of available labs and testing centers throughout France. The website is in French, so be sure to toggle your browser translation to English. To select a primary location, choose 75 for Paris.
The list of labs and testing centers is by sorted postal code. One hack is to look at the last number of the postal code for the arrondissement. For example, 75004 is the Marais because Marais is the 4th arrondissement and Paris is 75 postal code. There are many testing sites throughout the city, so choose a lab or location convenient for you.
Most of the labs list their information for appointments. You may notice some testing centers do not require an appointment. Many labs on the list, especially ones that require an appointment, are by Bioborne or BioClinic Be sure to pre-register on their websites to obtain an appointment and have a smooth process.
Before booking an appointment from home, you may want to ask your hotel if their guests have any experience with the testing center you have chosen in Paris. If you booked an appointment before leaving home, you can travel confidently, knowing you have that necessary travel chore done.
Budget Friendly | Quick Results | Various Locations
As of November 2, 2021, French pharmacies will be even busier since they are now the place where American travelers can convert their CDC vaccine cards into the Digital French Pass Sanitaire. That will cost €36. You can find all pharmacy locations on this map from the French government website.
Getting a Covid-19 test in Paris at a neighborhood pharmacy is the preferred method of most locals and travelers. Pharmacies are located all over Paris, and there will likely be several in your area of Paris.
Pro Tip: Please email or call your hotel ahead of your trip to find out which pharmacy they recommend in their neighborhood. It also doesn’t hurt to bookmark a couple of pharmacies.
Various pharmacies all over Paris offer rapid antigen tests. These tests meet the requirement for travelers flying to the United States. Be sure to research if the pharmacy requires an appointment but many accept walk-ins during certain hours.
For example, if you are headed to my favorite neighborhood, Le Marais, you might get off at the St. Paul Metro stop. Here is a link to the pharmacies near that metro stop.
Pro Tip: Be sure to ask your hotel ahead of time, where the nearest pharmacy is located that offers Covid-19 tests. Pharmacies are the quickest way to get your Covid-19 test results in hand. Results are returned to you within 15-30 minutes.
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Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris
Appointment Necessary | Last-Minute Option | Convenient Location
If you want a last-minute option to get a Covid-19 test in Paris, Charles de Gaulle Airport has a testing center. So unlike getting a Covid-19 test in Rome’s Fiumicino Airport, appointments are compulsory. Yes, you are likely going to the airport anyway, but do you want to add an extra 2 hours to your time in the airport?
Appointments for Covid-19 tests at Paris Charles De Gaulle are available online. The Doctolib website is in French, so be sure to translate to English in your browser or use Google Translate. From the booking menu, you can select antigen, PCR, or rapid PCR test. Doctolib handles the booking, but you will have to make an account to secure your booking.
Cost: €30 Antigen and €50 PCR
Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport Covid-19 Testing Center Details
The testing center is in Terminal 2E. If you are arriving by RER B train from central Paris, then take the escalator upstairs. The testing center is above the train station in terminal 2E.
The operating hours are limited: 7 am to 7 pm or as late as 8 pm depending on the day. Plan accordingly so the testing center is open for your scheduled flight.
The results are emailed to you, but you will also get a text message alert of your results. Results can take up to 90 minutes, so plan accordingly not to miss your check-in deadline.
If you are spending less than 72 hours in Paris and flying in and out of Charles de Gaulle, then you might as well get your test there. The testing center at Charles De Gaulle allows tests to be administered 72 hours before departure. Also, anyone with a valid flight ticket can take a test.
The Reality of Getting Tested at Paris Charles de Gaulle
I’m not too fond of unnecessary stress or time at the airport, so I view the airport as a last resort option.
Getting a Covid-19 test at the airport also means it will be too late to upload results to your airline’s app or use Verifly if you fly British Airways or American Airlines. It also means you will have to fill out the paper version of the health declaration form required to enter the United States.
Bonus: Take-Home Tests
Take-home tests purchased before leaving the USA are becoming increasingly popular for travelers. I think they are a good backup option, but I have never taken one. They cost about the same, or a little more, as a test in France. If everything goes smoothly, the test can take about the same time as getting a Covid-19 test in Paris.
The most significant caveat is that you never know how long it will take. The tests acceptable for travel to France require an online consultation. This summer, several outlets reported outrageous wait times for travelers. The discrepancy among wait times was a huge turnoff for me, and I would prefer to research ahead of time where to get a Covid-19 test in Paris and take just a mere 20-30 minutes out of my day as I’m exploring the city.