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  • Writer's pictureJameson Farn

A May Day Coronavirus Update

Happy May Day everyone! It seems there is now a new glimmer of hope for the future of travel as the French Government announced late this week a series of dates that will see the end of restrictions by June 30, 2021. These key dates currently are: May 3 - local travel restrictions within the country lifted. May 19 - restaurant terraces and museums will reopen. June 9 - international visitors will be allowed back into France if they have been fully vaccinated with a recent PCR test. June 9 - Curfew will be at 11pm (currently 7pm) until 6am. June 9 - restaurants will reopen with a maximum of 6 people per table. June 30 - end of 11pm curfew. Please note the Government has said that the ending of restrictions restaurants/ museum etc will be based on the number of Covid cases not significantly increasing. If they do then local restrictions may again come into place.

This is an overall, tentative plan in place. As long as people keep getting vaccinated and our numbers continue to decrease.

It is all subject to change.

This is fantastic and positive news though we need to still expect a possible degree of local conditions/restriction this summer.

We’ve noticed for months now locally during these restricted times there is a feeling of hope as restaurants have been renovating for the new season, along with hotels and overall city buildings have been getting a fresh coat of paint.

There is a cautious optimism in the air. Speaking with our partners, the consensus is this will be just like last summer in many regards but busier with international borders being open to North Americans finally this year.

This means if you are planning to come to France, expect last minute changes and plan, plan, plan.

Summer 2020 was still surprisingly busy in terms of holiday villa rental bookings, everything was last minute but everything also still booked up with the main focus seemingly being on the Saint Tropez area first. Properties there booked up intensely to the point there was bidding wars on property rentals.

Then that whole dynamic moved between the Nice and Monaco area, which is always a hot spot.

The general feeling is with this summer now being open to North Americans, the bookings will be even more intense.

A good strong piece of advice if you are coming this way is, know what you want ahead of time, discuss it with who you are traveling with so decisions can be made, and include a very realistic budget range as it will save yourself time and efforts. We are happy to help as well.

Typically any villas with 4-5 bedrooms, a pool and close to the sea (or even with a good sea view) is going to be expensive no matter where it is, inland is where prices are traditionally lower. If you see a property listed somewhere without a price, that means it’s expensive.

Villa rentals are normally booked fast in the summer, but with the pandemic, decisions are made and places get booked even quicker now. Options are easy to provide but do yourself a favor and don’t hesitate too long as even last summer people would assume they had time to decide only to find out an hour or two later the villa they wanted booked up.

Villa rentals are also only done on a weekly basis, the longer you stay, the better negotiating power we have to get you a discount. Also, there is no such thing as a Covid discount, as the market is still very strong, we just naturally negotiate on everything on the behalf of the client.

With the Coronavirus still being present, this also means precautions will be in place everywhere, as hard and as unusual it may seem. Like last summer, if you are hoping to come to France but not allowed into the country yet due to where you live, owners will not want to spend time or even possibly book your stay as it puts their calendar at risk to losing out to a client that can visit. Owners of villas are going to ask a lot of questions as they will be fine with families and friends booking their property as one group, but don’t expect to be allowed to have large social gatherings of any kind, if caught doing so, you may be asked to leave by either the owner and/or authorities.

If you are looking to buy a property in France, this will be an exceptional time. Literally since week one of the pandemic, focus moved from vacation villa rentals to the property market.

People have been seeking properties away from cities that offer plenty of space, so anything in the countryside has been moving fast. Properties in the Mougins area as an example have been moving faster than in past years mainly due to Brexit and those wanting to be in more of a family style community with an international school.

Seaside villas and apartments are always highly warranted properties, and because people have been stuck at home more due to lockdowns, they have been able to take more time deciding on exactly what they want in terms of a property investment and anything near the sea always has the highest return.

We have also seen an increase in demand for newer, more modern properties for sale with those in the Provencal category being sought after by people looking for a renovation project. And everything is negotiable.

Whatever you desire coming to France this summer, we are very excited to know that the possibilities are now there for everyone to experience the French Riviera.


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