Rapid tests and lockdown rules at Nice Airport

Now that France has gone into lockdown, passengers going into and out of Nice airport must once again prove they have a legitimate need to travel. Meanwhile, voluntary rapid Covid testing is now available for travellers from certain routes.

With Friday’s lockdown in place in France, Nice Airport has announced that all passengers will again be required to present a health declaration, and any additional documentation needed to show that travel is necessary for personal, professional or medical reasons.

The airport authorities have stated there may be a reduction in flight schedules during this period and that travellers should consult their airline’s websites to keep abreast of the latest information.

Masks are strictly required both inside and outside of the terminal, as well as on board flights.

Nice Airport has also rolled out a voluntary Covid testing programme that will allow passengers from “red country” routes, such as the United States and Italy, to be tested and know in minutes whether they are positive or not. This service has been offered in Marseilles and Paris since last Monday, and now it is available in Nice as well.

The tests, whilst a good first line of defence, are not considered to be as effective as PCR tests, but as they don’t require a lab to be processed, can give results in as little as 10 minutes. This is a huge step forward for many travellers who had been required to present a negative PCR that was dated within 48 to 72 hours of travel and were virtually unobtainable due to laboratory backlogs.

The hope is that with testing in place at airports, the days of quarantine will come to a close, though experts say precautions must still be taken.

“From the moment the patient has a test, even negative, they must wear a mask on flights. Avoid removing it, and do not serve food or drink, so that there is no possibility for these patients who are moderately positive to contaminate their neighbours,” recommended Jean-Claude Azoulay, vice-president of the National Union of Biological Physicians, on Europe 1. “I think we should continue to do PCR tests and only use antigen tests when travellers really have not been able to get tested, or when there is a stopover.”