What’s happening in the ski season 2021/22 to stay Covid Safe? The ski season is going ahead in France – and we’re excited here at Whitebeam Chalets. Ski resorts will be wide open and more than ready to see you ski or snowboard.
However, there will be restrictions to keep guests safe.
We predict that there will be a higher demand for the peak weeks for the 21/22 winter season, and we recommend that our guests book in plenty of time. We’ve all missed skiing so much.
There’s even a chance that resorts will limit the number of ski passes sold per week, so the gondolas and lifts aren’t overloaded.
Others will encourage recognised groups and families to stick together on enclosed lifts. Queues will be slower moving but safer all around.
It may be preferable to use uncovered lifts to access clean air, and queues are often smaller.
Here’s what’s in place to keep people safer during the ski season of 2021/22. We are more than happy to abide by the rules and encourage our guests to follow them too.
Wearing masks to keep Covid safe
There are different rules for different regions, but generally, it’s a requirement to wear a mask in indoor public places like transport, cinemas, shops, and toilets in France.
You should also wear one when entering or leaving a restaurant; see below.
They are also compulsory in busy outdoor spaces like queues, open-air markets and public gatherings.
Wearing a mask is the way of life here in France, and it will continue through the ski season.
We are sure you will be required to wear a mask whilst riding on enclosed lifts and possibly even on open lifts if you are sitting with people outside your group. It would be a nice thing to do anyway.
Whitebeam Chalets have experienced Peisey-Vallandry mountain operations during the summer of 2021 during the bike season. The lift operators were efficient and checked that each visitor wore a mask on closed lifts like the TransArc.
Make sure you have a mask at all times when visiting Peisey-Vallandry.
You will need to wear a mask on public transport when you travel here. Please see the travel section.
Covid rules in bars and restaurants in the French Alps
All restaurant staff must be double vaccinated, and they will wear a mask whilst serving.
There are times that you will be required to wear a mask, such as:
- On entering and leaving the restaurant.
- When you visit the toilet – even when walking past tables on outside terraces.
- When going to the bar. Some restaurants have discontinued bar service.
Smaller ski resort for Covid-safe ski holidays
Whitebeam Chalets would love to welcome you to our Covid-safe chalet in Peisey-Vallandry/Les Arcs.
Because Peisey-Vallandry is a small resort, there’s plenty of open space. Perfect if you feel you’d like to keep away from the crowds, just that little bit.
Our ski chalet – Chalet Cairn – is spacious and sits on a quiet road in a quiet village.
If you don’t book the whole chalet, you will likely share it with someone outside of your group, so be aware of that when booking.
Each room is ensuite, so the only time you would need to be in the same vicinity as other people is meal times or passing in the hallways.
The ski resort of Peisey-Vallandry is about 10 minutes away by free shuttle bus.
There are frequent public buses, and the bus stop is a 2-minute walk from the chalet. The bus driver always wears a mask, and riders must wear theirs.
Whitebeam Chalets will also offer a private ski bus between certain times morning and afternoon to keep you safe in your group – that is our standard service.
How Whitebeam Chalets give you a Covid-safer ski holiday
We cannot guarantee 100% that you will not get Covid during your holiday – we all have to be sensible about the risks.
You will be near other people who have travelled here from various destinations, especially if you’re on a shared chalet week.
However, we want to reduce the risk, and Whitebeam Chalets take special precautions during the ski season of 2021/22 and beyond.
Our cleaners always check that the following areas are thoroughly clean:
- Door handles.
- Waste height flat surfaces.
We air all rooms between guest visits for as long as possible.
Unfortunately, airing takes time and means you cannot check in as early. We kindly ask you to leave the chalet on time – 11 am for all guests.
Our fantastic cleaners will show up at the chalet at 11 am on the day of departure. We need to leave them to do their essential job so the next group can be safe.
Bedding is always washed and dried at high temperatures by our own hands in our wonderful laundrette. Our clearing team wash their hands before making each bed.
Chalet chef and host
Your chef and host are double (if not triple) vaccinated against the Covid-19 virus. They will wear a mask when cooking, serving and in the presence of guests.
Whitebeam Chalet staff wash their hands before and after jobs around the chalet.
We practice safety standards to protect all our guests against the spread of the virus.
Whitebeam Chalets keep your details on file and let you know if someone staying with you during your week develops symptoms.
Peisey-Vallandry is genuinely a wonderful place to come if you want to get away from it all. Not only is there downhill snow sports like skiing and snowboarding, but you will also find tranquil spots.
Have a drink outside on a restaurant terrace in the open mountain air, book a masseuse to come to the chalet or join the local yoga community in a large, open school gym (all participants will need to show proof of vaccination).
You can visit other areas, even on foot. The Vanoise Express is a huge cable car connecting Peisey-Vallandry to La Plagne. So you can pop over for a snowy walk and a light lunch.
Our Covid-safe tips for the ski season 2021/22
- Bring hand-sanitiser and keep a small bottle in your jacket pocket. Hand sanitiser tends to be more expensive in France than in the UK. And it will be costly in resorts.
- Avoid touching lift bars and handrails where possible.
- Bring more than one pair of gloves.
- Bring a bunch of facemasks because they get lost easily on the slopes. We hope you will hang on to them, though, to reduce litter on our beautiful mountains.
- If there is an accident, you will need a surgical mask to visit any hospital in the area. Surgical masks are available at the local pharmacy in Vallandry.
- We’ve seen washable snoods with protective masks inside them; these might be a good investment.
We’ve also got a blog post on what’s new for the ski season 2021/22 in Peisey-Vallandry and Les Arcs – there are some exciting updates.
Covid-19 cover in ski holiday travel insurance
You must ensure you have sufficient insurance for your ski holiday in France. We advise you to check that your policy covers:
- Inability to travel if you or a party member catches Covid-19 before the trip.
- Cover for an additional stay (in a different establishment) if you catch Covid-19 whilst on holiday. You cannot travel, and you must carry out the required quarantine here in France.
- Travel expenses to return home, like a change of flights and transfers, when you’ve had to extend your time here due to catching Covid-19.
- Incurred expenses and losses if you cannot travel due to government restrictions.
We know there are insurance policies that cover all of the above.
The MoneySuperMarket website is a great place to investigate insurance policies that make you feel secure when you travel.
Travel advice – the UK to France
PLEASE NOTE: RULES CHANGE ALL THE TIME. WE WILL TRY TO KEEP THIS UP TO DATE BUT WE TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR HEALTH OR YOUR TRAVEL TO OR FROM FRANCE, EVEN IF YOU READ IT HERE. WE HAVE DONE OUR BEST TO OFFER HONEST ADVICE. Please use the official links below for official advice.
We try to keep travel advice up to date, but please check government websites. This article is not official information.
- Travel from the UK to France – gov.uk (out of date at the time of writing, KD check)
The UK is currently on France’s amber list; double vaccinated travellers have had no problem getting into France from the UK.
There is no longer a need to self-isolate for vaccinated guests.
However, from 4th December, you will require a negative Covid test (and more) if you are outside the EU – this includes travellers from the UK, USA and Canada.
What non-EU vaccinated people will need to travel to France:
- Proof of both vaccinations – we recommend printing this as well as having it on the app on your phone. It will only be valid if:
- you travel seven days after the second shot (Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca (Vaxevria and Covishield). Those with single shots or those who have had Covid visit this page.
- A completed ‘sworn statement’ (déclaration sur l’honneur) to enter France.
- Scroll down that page.
- Hit TRAVEL TO/FROM AN AMBER LIST COUNTRY.
- Download the English version of the PDF.
- Print it out and complete it before you travel.
- Note that further testing may be required on arrival in France.
- A negative Covid-19 test Take a rapid-result antigen test within 48 hours of departure.
- Find a private test provider to take the test – often called ‘fit-to-fly’ tests.
- It must be able to detect protein N of Sars-Cov2. Check this when you book one. We are finding out if this is official information.
Travel to France with Children
Whilst writing this, the rules are that you can travel with unvaccinated children under 12; they need to present a negative Covid-19 test to detect protein N of Sars-Cov2.
Flights from Geneva
If you are flying to Geneva, you enter Switzerland before coming to France.
You must have proof that you are travelling directly to France. We recommend having your accommodation booking and transfer/car hire booking at hand.
You also need to complete this Covid-19 entry form. Here is the information from the Swiss government on Covid-19 and travelling to Switzerland.
Unvaccinated non-EU citizens
We do not accept guests over the age of 18 that aren’t vaccinated. You would also need a compelling reason to visit France, and skiing does not come under this category.
Travelling back to the UK from France
Currently, France is on the UK amber list, making it acceptable to travel if you have double vaccination.
At the moment, in December, here is what double vaccinated guests are required to do:
Before you travel back to the UK, you must:
- Complete a Passenger Locator Form.
- Book and pay for a 2-day COVID-19 Lateral Flow test.You can choose to send this to your house or go to a physical location.
- You will receive a test code via email to prove you’ve booked it; you need this for your Passenger Location Form.
- The test must be carried out two days after arrival in the UK. If you’ve opted to take the test at home, you digitally take a photo of the results and email it to the private pharmacy. If you’re negative, they send a negative certificate to you.
The above rules apply for the fully vaccinated under either:
- The UK vaccination programme.
- The UK vaccine programme overseas.
- An approved vaccination programme in Europe or the USA – not all are recognised in England.
How Brexit affects the ski season 2021/22
The ski season of 2021/22 will be the first next-to-normal season since the UK officially withdrew from the EU on 31st December 2021.
The benefits of freedom of movement have ceased for UK passport holders, which does mean longer queues whilst passports are checked – at airports and ferry ports. In our experience, this has been fine and well organised.
UK visitors are welcome to France for a maximum of 3 months.