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Languages of Europe — Phrases to know when traveling to France (Basic French Phrases)

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The French language fascinates me, but even more than that, the accent sounds so great. It is awfully hard to master though. And I might have to check my facts, but I’m sure they’d call you on a bad accent. Either way, I took two years of French in high school, so that would have to make me at least the slightest bit ahead of the curve, Right? Wrong. Besides the fact that I took both French I and II my Freshman year, I still find it incredibly complex to wrap my mind around. Here are some words and phrases I’ll use to make my stay in France more enjoyable, and hopefully I can pick up a whole lot more while I’m there.\

If you see an error, let us know so we can fix it!  As always, we want the content to be top notch!  Also, if you speak any of the other languages not yet covered, email us at SojourningAbroad@gmail.com if you are interested in helping translate the list!  Thanks readers.  You are all the best!

Numbers (números)

1 – Un (uhn)

2 – Deux (duhr)

3 – Trois (twa)

4 – Quatre (kart)

5 – Cinq (sank)

6 – Six (sees)

7 – Sept (set)

8 – Huit (weet)

9 – Neuf (nurf)

10 – Dix (dees)

Greeting

“Hello” – Bonjour (bohnjour)

“Good morning” – Bonjour

“Good afternoon” – Bonjour

“Good evening” – Bonsoir (bonswa)

“Good night” – Bonsoir

“Good night” (I’m going to bed) – Bonne nuit

“My name is … ” – Je m’appelle…

“Goodbye” – Au revoir (ah revwa)

“Please” – S’il vous plaît (si vu-play)

“Thanks” – Merci (mare-see)

“Yes” – Oui (we)

“No” – Non

“Excuse me” – “Veuillez m’excuser” or “Excusez-moi”.  Veuillez m’excuser is quite formal. Excuse-moi to a friend.

Conversational

“Do you speak English?” – Parlez-vous anglais? (par-lay voo an-glay)

“I don’t speak French well” – Je ne parle pas bien le français

“Speak slower please” – Parler plus lentement s’il vous plaît

“How do you say ‘(English word/phrase)’ in French” – Comment dites-vous ‘(English word/phrase)’ en Français?

“Very interesting” – Très intéressant

“Wonderful” – Merveilleux

“May I take a photograph?” – Puis-je prendre une photo?

Toast – santé

Restaurant/Shopping

“How much does this cost?” – Combien ça coûte?

“Can I pay with a credit card?” – Puis-je payer avec une carte de crédit?

“I’d like to pay, please” – Je voudrais payer s’il vous plaît.

“I would like” – Je voudrais/you can also say “Je souhaiterais”, “J’aimerais”.

“Water” – Eau

“Wine” – Vin

“Beer” – Bière

“Soda” – You can just say “Soda” or the name of the soda. Notice that “Pop” won’t work.

“Beef” – Bœuf

“Chicken” – Poulet

“Fish” – Poisson

“Pasta” – Pâtes

“Bread” – Pain

“This food is delicious!” – Cette nourriture est délicieuse!

Navigation

“Where is the” – Où est le

“Can you show me on the map how to get there?” – Pouvez-vous me montrer sur la carte comment y arriver?

“Can you show me where ______ is on the map” – Pouvez-vous me montrer où _____ est sur la carte?

“Where is the restroom?” – Où sont les toilettes?

“How do I get a taxi?” – Comment puis-je trouver un taxi?

“Where can I find a bus?” – Où puis-je trouver un bus?

“Where can I find the Metro?” – Où puis-je trouver le métro?

“Where is the airport?” – Où est l’aéroport?

“Can you take me to [location]” – Pouvez-vous me conduire à [location]?

Emergency

“Emergency” – “C’est une urgence”.

“Help!” – Aide!

“Can you call a doctor?” – Pouvez-vous appeler un médecin?

“I’m an American Citizen” – Je suis un citoyen Américain

“Please call the American Embassy” – S’il vous plaît appelez l’ambassade Américaine

“My blood type is ______” – Mon groupe sanguin est ____

“I’m allergic to …” – Je suis allergique aux…

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Comments
19 Responses to “Languages of Europe — Phrases to know when traveling to France (Basic French Phrases)”
  1. swozy says:

    This takes me back to my High School French. Thank you for the memories. 🙂

  2. Likewise, swozy. 4 years of HS French. I’m a pro…not. This was a good review, for sure!

  3. Olivia Mair says:

    hmmmm I believe this very important phrase may be missing…

    une autre bouteille de vin rouge s’il vous plaît

    🙂

  4. It’s okay, I’ve spoken to a French person and they said when a foreigner try’s speak French it’s “so cute!” But he could be the exception!

  5. We went to Arle, France and they barely speak English there! We wanted to visit some of the subjects of Van Gogh’s paintings. We got by with the basic french we know from a downloaded app and lots of hand gestures (charade-like). It’s one thing to have a list of basic phrases but it’s a different thing trying to pronounce it (good thing the app came with voice function). It was hilarious when we went through McDonald’s drive thru! They looked at us as if we were aliens:)

  6. I will be visiting Paris next week either the 19 or 20 of July. I am going to stay a day, and right now am taking suggestions on places to stay. If you have any suggestions.

  7. Fabien says:

    I see an error, or rather errors honhonhon.

    – Good Night : “Bonsoir” is correct, but if you say it to someone who’s going to bed, you’ll say “Bonne nuit”.

    – Excuse me : “M’excuser” alone is not correct, you’ll say “Veuillez m’excuser” or “Excusez-moi” to someone you don’t know (Veuillez m’excuser is quite formal). Excuse-moi to a friend.

    – How do you say ‘(English word/phrase)’ in French : Comment dites-vous ‘(English word/phrase)’ en Français?

    – I’d like to pay, please : Je voudrais payer s’il vous plaît. (no “à”)

    – I would like : “Je voudrais” is correct, but “Je vais devoir” is not, you can also say “Je souhaiterais”, “J’aimerais”.

    – Soda : Soude is only a chemical in French, your stomach won’t like that, believe me haha. You can just say “Soda” or the name of the soda. Notice that “Pop” won’t work.

    – Emergency : D’urgence nope, if you wanna say like “this is an emergency, you’ll say “C’est une urgence”.

    – Help! : “Aide!” is not complete, “A l’aide!” or “Aidez-moi!”.

    Now I have to go, I need to take my first shower of the month. (That’s just to confirm you I’m French)

    Have fun visiting France!

  8. you could also check out some of our general tips to help you prepare for your trip… 😉
    http://the-europhiles.com/2012/10/13/how-to-get-better-at-foreign-languages-without-even-noticing/

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