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Masks: mandatory indoors with some exceptions


Man wearing a mask in a grocery store by Xavier Minguella Minguella via ScopioIn accordance with new French health regulations, starting from Monday 20th, wearing a mask in closed public places has become mandatory in all of France. Without necessarily raising an alarm, the necessity to be slightly more precautious has encouraged the government to make it an obligation to at least respect certain health safety measures.

Social distancing was already expected from the start of the “déconfinement” on May 11th, but wearing a mask was only required in public transport and at best “highly” recommended elsewhere. The fine of 135 euros that was applied for not wearing a mask in public transportation but now is applied to all areas where masks are required.

For the few speculations as to when, where, and who should wear a mask, the French government has provided some significant clarifications:

Who do masks apply to?

For everyone’s safety, anyone above the age of eleven is expected to wear a mask. The age limitation has taken into consideration the re-opening of schools and expects students starting middle school to take the necessary precautions. Below 11 years old, masks are not required and even discouraged as it can be dangerous for young children.

Where is the mask mandatory?

  • Any public and confined place: restaurants, gyms, supermarkets, shopping centres, hotels, etc.
  • Restaurants: Masks are only mandatory while moving around the public spaces and between tables. In other words, unless seated, a guest is expected to wear a mask at all times if the restaurant is indoors.
  • Exercise clubs: If these clubs are indoors, wearing a mask will still be required. However, they’re only required when people are moving around and not when they’re physically exerting themselves. It’s actually very similar to the regulations people must follow in restaurants!
  • Not required: In any private buildings or outdoor spaces, wearing a mask is not required, though highly encouraged. This includes communal areas of residences, such as the foyer, mailrooms and trash areas.


When will the mask be required?

Wearing the mask was made mandatory by the French Government on the 20th of July. However, no end date has been given at the moment. We shall, therefore, be expected to wear the mask until further notice.

- Charlotte Gillet