Christmas in France is subdued this year, similar to last year. The country has tightened its travel rules as France records a daily record of 91,608 COVID cases on Friday (24th December 2021), as the Omicron variant surges across the country and Europe.
The previous absolute record of 86,852 cases dates back to early November 2020, at the peak of the second epidemic wave.
In Paris, the mayor’s office announced on Saturday (December 18) that the fireworks and concerts planned on the famous avenue des Champs-Elysées for New Year’s Eve have been cancelled.
France already closed nightclubs from Friday (December 10) for four weeks in an effort to curb rapidly rising COVID-19 infections.
France records a daily record
The government estimates the figure will quickly exceed 100,000 new daily cases.
Pressure also continues to mount on critical care units, which have 3,208 patients compared to 3,147 on Tuesday, with 323 new admissions. 179 more deaths due to coronavirus were registered.
On Wednesday (December 22) the government-approved COVID-19 jabs for children five to 11 years old.
Christmas in France for the vaccinated
Vaccinations for children who are at risk for severe COVID-19 began last week.
The French health ministry has for now ruled out offering booster doses to teenagers, for whom vaccination started in mid-June.
It comes as the French government urged people to get tested and keep holiday gatherings small amid high infections due to COVID-19.
Prime Minister Jean Castex said that in the new year the “health pass” will turn into a “vaccine pass” with more restrictions on people who are unvaccinated.
From 15 January, all adults will need a booster jab at least seven months after being fully vaccinated in order to keep their health passes. From mid-December, people over the age of 65 will need one to have their health passes extended.
And from 30 January, all caregivers and firefighters in France will have to receive a third dose.