Essential French Vocabulary For Travel

Essential French For Travel

Essential French vocabulary for travel include words such as “bonjour” (meaning hello, pronunciation bɔ̃ʒuʀ), “au revoir” (meaning goodbye, pronunciation o ʀvwaʀ), “s’il vous plait” (meaning please, pronunciation s-il vu plɛ) and “merci” (meaning thank you, pronunciation mɛʀsi). On this page you’ll learn all the important words you’ll need to know for a trip to France. Keep reading!

Ways to say hello in French

There are many ways to say “hello” in French, which we cover in detail on this page. Here, we’ll look at the most common words.

Bonjour

The most common and formal way to say hello in French is “bonjour“, pronounced bɔ̃ʒuʀ. This word can also be used for “good morning”. This page on our site explains bonjour in detail and this page covers ways of saying “good morning“.

Salut

The second most common ways to say “hello” in French is “salut” (pronounced sal-oo). This word is much less formal and means both “hi” and “bye”. It should only be used with closer acquaintances and friends.

This page on our site covers salut in detail.

Ways to say goodbye in French

Au revoir

There are many ways to say “goodbye” in French, which we cover in detail on this page. The most common word for goodbye is “au revoir”, which we explain in depth here.

Bonne nuit

At the end of the day it will be necessary to say “good night”, which is “bonne nuit” (pronounced bun nwee). This page on our site covers how to say “good night”, as well as the difference between “bonne nuit” and bonsoir (good evening).

Yes and no in French

Oui

It is essential that you know the correct pronunciation of yes and no before a trip to France. The word for yes is “oui”, which is pronounced “wee”.

Non

The word for “no” in French is “non”, which is pronounced with a nasal -on sound. This page on Frenchtoday.com covers the French nasal sounds in detail.

There are many other ways to say yes and no. This page covers ways to say “yes” and this page covers ways to say “no”.

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Please and thank you

It is essential that you learn how to say please, thank you as well as you’re welcome for your trip to France.

S’il vous plaît / s’il te plaît

In French, there are two ways to say please: Use “s’il vous plaît” in formal situations and “s’il te plaît” in informal situations. This page on our site covers various ways to say “please” in French.

De rien

The word for “you’re welcome” in French is “de rien”. The pronunciation is a bit difficult as the “en” is a nasal “ɛ̃” sound as in the word “inviter” (to invite). This page on our site covers various ways to say “you’re welcome” in French.

How are you?

In French there are several ways to ask, “How are you?”. In formal situations, say: “Comment allez-vous?”. In informal situations, you can say both: “Comment vas-tu?” and “Ça va?”. This page on our site covers various ways of asking “How are you?”. This page observes the expression “ça va” in depth.

Introductions

It is absolutely essential that you learn how to introduce yourself and tell somebody your name and “nice to meet you?

Je m’appelle

In French, to tell somebody your name, say: “Je m’appelle”, which means “my name is”.

This page on our site covers how to say “my name is” in French in detail.

Comment vous appelez-vous? / Comment t’appelles-tu?

There are two ways to ask somebody’s name: Use “Comment vous appelez-vous?” in formal situations and “Comment t’appelles-tu?” in informal situations.

Enchanté

The French word for “nice to meet you” is: “enchanté”. Another way of saying “nice to meet you” is: “Ravi de faire votre connaissance”. This page on our site explains the various ways of saying “nice to meet you” in French.

Language difficulties

You will undoubtedly have some language difficulties on your trip to France. The following two phrases should come in very handy.

Je ne comprends pas

To say, “I don’t understand” in French, say: “Je ne comprends pas”.

Répétez, s’il vous plaît

If you need somebody to repeat, simply say: “Répétez, s’il vous plaît”.

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