Modeling studies predict that global warming might severely affect bud dormancy release. However, growing empirical evidences suggest that long photoperiod might compensate for a lack of chilling temperature in photosensitive species. For now, attempts to integrate this effect into models remain limited. Here, we used French budburst phenological records for two main European temperate tree species, Fagus sylvatica (n = 136) and Quercus petraea (n = 276), to compare four phenological models accounting for a photoperiod effect, two of them proposing a new formalism of the effect of photoperiod, and three classical thermal models. We also investigated the effect of a realistic photoperiod cue on budburst dates in future climatic conditions. Consistently with the empirical literature, we find that models integrating a photoperiod cue were more relevant to simulate budburst dates for beech than for oak. However, contrary to the recently debated expectation that photoperiod might mitigate the trend towards earlier budburst date, we find that the compensatory effect of photoperiod on a lack of chilling maintains a trend towards earlier dates up to the end of the 2100. Our results also suggest that phenological rank changes between photosensitive and photo-insensitive species may be more pronounced at cold than warm trailing edge.