Travel Alert: France [July 30, 2021]

Travel Alert

Protesters in France plan to rally in city centers nationwide on July 31. The intent of the rally is to protest the government’s response to combat the spread of COVID-19, specifically to vaccinations for health care workers and the mandate that individuals possess a Health Pass in order to use certain facilities, patronize certain establishments, or attend functions, among other things.

In Paris, three demonstrations will take place. The protesters will meet at the Villiers Metro station at 10:00 before staging a march – possibly to Place de la Bastille – beginning at 12:00. The second group of protesters will rally in front of the BFM 2 television station on rue General Alain Boissieu beginning at 11:00; demonstrators will also gather at Place du 18 Juin 1940 in the city’s Montparnasse neighborhood at 14:30.

Organizers have also announced plans for gatherings in dozens of other cities across France, with those slated to take place at the following locations and start times likely to be among the largest:

  • Bordeaux: Place de la Bourse, 14:00
  • Clermont-Ferrand: Place de Jaude, 14:00
  • Dijon: Place de la Republique, 14:00
  • Grenoble: Place Verdun, 15:00
  • Lille: Place de la Republique, 12:00
  • Lyon: Place Carnot, 14:00
  • Marseille: Old Port, 14:00
  • Metz: Place de la Republique, 14:00
  • Montpellier: Place de la Comedie, 14:00
  • Nice: Place Massena, 11:00 and Place Garibaldi, 14:00
  • Perpignan: Place de Catalogne, 14:00
  • Rennes: Place de la Republique, 14:00
  • Rouen: City Hall (Hotel de Ville), 14:00
  • Strasbourg: Place Kleber, 13:00
  • Toulouse: Jean Jaures, 14:00
  • Valance: Prefecture, 12:00

Some events may include marches along roads near announced rally points. Unannounced impromptu gatherings could occur with little to no advance notice. Participation will vary significantly by location but gatherings in major cities could draw very large crowds. Paris will likely see the largest demonstrations. Additional related demonstrations are also possible across France on Aug. 1. Authorities will almost certainly deploy increased security to monitor all demonstrations. Large numbers of people and associated security measures will likely prompt localized transport disruptions; public transport services may be canceled or diverted. Activists associated with the Yellow Vests anti-government movement are likely to take part in several of the demonstrations. Actions attended by Yellow Vest activists have an increased potential for clashes and other security disturbances. Authorities could resort to riot-control measures, including

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