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60 Important French Travel Phrases For Your Next Trip To France

Essential French words and travel phrases

The most essential French travel phrases are Bonjour (hello), au revoir (goodbye), Où est? (Where is), C’est combien (How much is it?) and l’addition s’il vous plaît (the check, please). This page covers over 100 useful words and phrases which you can use on a trip to France.

French travel phrases: Essential words and phrases for trip to France.

French Greetings

If you are going to France it is very important to learn the basic greetings. While you might not speak French fluently just yet, the French people will really appreciate your trying to make an effort.

  • Bonjour Hello, good morning, good day
  • Au revoir Goodbye
  • Salut Hi/bye (informal)
  • Merci! Thank you!
  • Merci beaucoup! Thank you very much!
  • Ça va? How are you? How’s it going? (informal)
  • Bien, merci! Fine, thank you!
  • S’il vous plaît Please
  • De rien You’re welcome
  • Enchanté! Nice to meet you!

This page on our site covers French greetings in detail.

French travel phrases
Bonjour! Hello!
Au revoir! Goodbye!
Merci! Thank you!
L'addition The bill/check
Je voudrais I would like
S'il vous plaît Please
De rien You're welcome
C'est  combien? How much?
Où est? Where is?
Avez-vous? Do you have?

Asking directions

When asking directions in France, it’s very important that you know a few basic words. This page on our site covers asking directions in detail.

  • Où est…? Where is…?
  • Où est la gare? Where’s the train station?
  • Où est la gare routière? Where’s the bus station?
  • Où sont les toilettes? Where’s the restroom?
  • Où est la banque? Where’ the bank?
  • Où est un bureau de change? Where’s a exchange counter?
  • Je suis perdu I’m lost
  • Le plan city map

Asking for things

On your trip you’ll inevitably need to ask for things. This short list of words is a very good start. Learning the verb vouloir is a good idea as it means “to want”.

  • Je veux (slightly informal)
  • Je voudrais I would like
  • Donnez-moi Give me
  • Avez-vous? Do you have?
  • Auriez-vous Would you happen to have?
  • Qu’est-ce que c’est? What is it?
  • Nous avons We have
  • Nous n’avons pas We don’t have
  • C’est disponible It’s available

Restaurant phrases

One of the best places to try practicing speaking French is a restaurant. Here’s a short list of words in phrases you may use. This page on our site offers a very comprehensive list of restaurant vocabulary. In addition, this page on our site covers food vocabulary and this page covers beverage vocabulary.

  • Une table pour deux, s’il vous plaît A table for two, please
  • Je prends I’ll have (from the verb prendre, to take)
  • La carte menu
  • La soupe soup
  • La salade salad
  • L’entrée appetizer
  • Le dessert dessert
  • La boisson beverage
  • Le vin rouge red wine
  • Le vin blanc white wine
  • Le vin rouge red wine
  • La a bière beer
  • Le café coffee

Taxi/Uber phrases

If you find yourself in a taxi or Uber, some of the the following phrases should come in very handy.

    • Je vais à I’m going to
    • Je descends ici I’ll get off here
    • Voici l’adresse Here’s the address
    • Allez tout droit Keep going straight
    • Tournez à gauche Take a left
    • Tournez à droite Take a right

    Hotel phrases

    The following is a short list of words and phrases that you can use in your hotel. While most hotel staff speak basic English, it’s still nice to know these words in French.

    • L’hôtel hotel
    • Une chambre à deux double room
    • Un grand lit Double bed
    • La réception Check-in desk
    • Quitter la chambre To check out
    • La piscine swimming pool
    • Le petit déjeuner compris Breakfast included
    • Réserver une chambre To reserve a room

    Miscellaneous words and phrases

    The following is a list of miscellaneous French words and phrases which we feel are essential for a trip to France and belong on this list.

    • Je voudrais louer une voiture. I’d like rent a car.
    • Je voudrais acheter un billet. I’d like to buy a ticket.
    • Un billet aller-retour Round-trip ticket
    • L’aller simple One-way ticket
    • Le passeport passport
    • Les vacances vacation
    • Je voudrais annuler. I’d like to cancel.
    • Un voyage A trip
    • Bon voyage! Enjoy your trip!
    • Bon séjour! Enjoy your stay!

    Further your learning
    We feel that it’s a great idea to carry a French phrase book while traveling in France. Overall, we have used and like the Lonely Planet French Phrasebook & Dictionary. Another great companion for a trip to France is the Rick Steves French Phrase Book & Dictionary.

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    David Issokson

    David Issokson is a lifelong language enthusiast. His head is swimming with words and sounds as he speaks over six languages. Of all the languages he speaks, he's the most passionate about French! David has helped hundreds of students to improve their French in his private online lessons. When procrastinating working on his site,, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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