Go where the locals go in France. Hire a modern travel agent with ViaHero.

Is it Safe to Travel to France in 2024?

Updated September 7, 2023

Is it safe to travel to France? Mais, oui! Home to bustling cities, beautiful countryside, and (perhaps) the best food in the world, France is an excellent destination for travelers. 

Our locals in France helped us put together this guide to staying safe in their home country. It covers everything from the COVID-19 pandemic to tips for solo travelers. 

Looking for insider info on safety in France? Work with a local for on-the-ground access as you plan your trip. Learn more

France and the coronavirus pandemic

Travel to France is mostly back to normal. Vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers can visit France for vacation (although the CDC recommends getting vaccinated before travel). Negative COVID tests are no longer required for Americans to enter the country. And the government does not currently have a mask mandate either. But masking is still recommended on public transit and indoors in public. 

Because these rules can change and fluctuate at a moment's notice, we recommend connecting with a local who can help you stay up-to-date. 

France is a great place for solo female travelers

Woman in Paris | Tristan Colangelo/Unsplash

If you are permitted to travel to France, our locals say you shouldn't worry about going alone. Solo travelers will find plenty of spectacular things to do in France. So, enjoy! 

Whether you want to nurse a coffee and people-watch in Nice, explore a Parisian museum, or wander the beaches in Normandy, France offers plenty of wonderful activities.

Locals tell us that women traveling solo in France should feel safe nearly anywhere they go. They say that catcalling is no worse than any other European country, and female travelers shouldn't have any trouble getting around by car, train, or bus. 

Our trip planners provide some quick safety tips for solo travelers

  • Don’t walk alone in poorly lit and deserted areas.
  • Don’t accept drinks from strangers. 
  • American friendliness can be misinterpreted as flirtation—so be firm if you want someone to stop bothering you
  • If you’re on a long train trip using the Intercités de Nuit (night train) on SNCF, France’s national railway, ask for the special compartment for women and families. Even better, splurge on a private compartment on overnight trains.
  • Speaking of which, most French cities have great hostels with female-only rooms.

Benefit from insider advice—many of our trip planners are women. They can give solo travelers insights on what it's like to navigate the country alone. 

How ViaHero Works

Choose a local

Choose a local travel planner from your destination.

Message the local

Tell your local travel planner about your trip and preferences.

Get a guidebook

Your planner sends custom recs, itinerary, maps, reservations.

Pickpockets and scams are your only real concern

Locals tell us that pickpockets operate at popular tourist sites and on public transportation. Follow common sense and be vigilant. Locals note that Parisian thieves are very good at what they do (tourists have been frequenting Paris for centuries), so be mindful and aware of your surroundings—especially in big cities like Paris and Marseille

Our locals tell us these are some common scams to avoid: 

The string bracelet scam

In this scam, a street vendor asks if you want a “friendship bracelet.” If you say yes (and often, even if you say no), a string/bracelet is tied so tightly around your wrist that you can’t move and then they demand money for the bracelet. Their partner may pick your pocket while they have you “indisposed.”

The gold ring scam

This scam involves a seemingly innocent person on the street pretending to find a gold ring on the sidewalk. They then ask you if it’s yours. When you say no, they offer to sell it to you (some have stamped 18k on the ring). If you end up buying it, you’ll own a worthless piece of polished brass. If you say yes, they will give you a sob story about being poor and ask for money. 

The streets of Paris are largely safe at night

Paris at sunset | skeeze/Pixabay

Romantic, classic, and full of unique charm, Paris is easily one of our favorite places to visit in France. (And there are so, so, so many.)

Happily, locals tell us that, generally, Paris is safe at night. So enjoy those moonlight strolls, Parisian sunsets, and magical nightcaps at bars where Hemingway wrote his novels. 

Just keep in mind that some places are safer than others. Locals tell us that the Le Marais district, the Latin quarter, and the South Bank—popular hubs for tourists and locals alike—are vibrant and safe day and night. Montmartre and Les Halles can be a bit sketchy. 

Local Tip:

Be on your lookout whenever you’re in a heavily-traveled tourist area like the Champs-Elysées—the crowds are perfect places for pickpockets. 

What kind of traveler are you?
Let’s face it. People want different things when they travel. Rather than spending hours sifting through blogs and top 10 lists written by people who may have totally different interests than you, why not start by sharing a little about what’s important to you when exploring a new destination?
Select your travel preferences below and let a local travel planner with ViaHero take it from there. Your personalized France recommendations, itinerary, and maps are just a few clicks away.

The Paris Metro is safe to ride

Metro in Paris | Paris-Sharing/Flickr

Locals tell us that le metro is safe, but petty theft is common at crowded stations.

Just take common-sense safety precautions when using public transportation—like you would anywhere else. 

We know that public transit in a new country can be confusing, but locals tell us that transportation in France is easy to use.

You may encounter a protest—but don't worry

Protests and strikes are a part of life in France. It's something to be aware of, but most won't interfere with your trip. 

Marches never come as a surprise—check with your local to learn their schedule, and plan around it. 

Local Tip:

The French like to protest! But big strikes usually come with plenty of notice, so it's easy to create a travel plan to avoid them. 

"How did I ever not travel like this?! Ana’s local insight & planning was a game changer. It’s like having a digital concierge, travel agent, and local fixer all rolled into one!"
Sierra, recent ViaHero traveler to Portugal
Sierra, recent ViaHero traveler to Portugal

Emergency contact info you should know

  • Emergency - 112 (European emergency number like 911 in the US)
  • Police (24/7) - 17
  • Health emergencies - 15
  • US Embassy Paris - +(33)(1) 43-12-22-22, enter zero "0" after the automated greeting
  • Website - U.S. Embassy Paris
  • If you work with a local to plan your trip, they'll be available via phone in case you run into any issues
Still have questions about travel to France?
Why not ask someone who lives there? ViaHero connects you with a local to help plan your trip. They’ll create a guidebook based on your personal travel style.
You’ll see a unique side of a destination and travel independently—all while saving time and money in the planning process. Find a local today.

Looking for more info?