Famous French phrases a beginner must know!

We all speak our mother tongue quite fluently. One of the major reasons we are able to do that is because of practice. The second? We know various common phrases which we use on a daily basis. 

Now if you’re someone on a journey to learn French, you must learn these French phrases which will help you sound like a native. You might think why learn these phrases when my French is just going great. When I can speak in French fluently, what’s the need for such phrases? 

Well, imagine you’re very happy. What would you rather like to say? Just a simple “I’m so happy” or, “I’m on cloud nine.”? While “I’m so happy” will give the receiver the information, “I’m on cloud nine” is more about feelings. 

So do you want to be able to express yourself fully in French? Then don’t forget to learn these phrases and fit them into your brain! Let’s see what they are!

  1. Bonjour – Want to make polite interactions in French? Use “Bonjour”. Used as a greeting, “bonjour” (pronounced bohn-zhoor) means “hello” and is appropriate for both formal and informal situations. 
  1. Comment ça va ? – When meeting someone, it’s common to ask “How are you?” In French, you would say “Comment ça va ?” (pronounced koh-mah sah vah). Use it to start a conversation with someone. 
  1. Merci – We must express gratitude from time to time. In French, “merci” (pronounced mehr-see) means “thank you” and is used in a variety of situations. So if you want to thank someone, make sure to say “merci.”
  1. S’il vous plaît – When making a request, it’s polite to say “please.” In French, you would say “s’il vous plaît” (pronounced seel voo pleh).
  1. Excusez-moi – If you need to get someone’s attention or apologize, “excusez-moi” (pronounced ehk-skew-zay mwa) is the phrase to use.
  1. Je ne comprends pas – If you find yourself struggling to understand, you can say “Je ne comprends pas” (pronounced zhuh nuh kohm-prahnd pah), which means “I don’t understand.”
  1. Oui and Non – These are the French words for “yes” and “no,” respectively. Pronounced as “wee” and “noh.”
  1. Je m’appelle… – When introducing yourself, you can say “Je m’appelle…” (pronounced zhuh mah-pehl), followed by your name.
  1. Au revoir – When it’s time to say goodbye, “au revoir” (pronounced oh reh-vwahr) is the appropriate phrase to use.
  1. Parlez-vous anglais ? – This means “Do you speak English?” It can be helpful when you’re trying to communicate with someone who may not speak French. Pronounced as “par-lay voo ahn-glay?”
  1. Je suis désolé(e) – Use this phrase to apologize or express regret. It means “I’m sorry.” Pronounced as “zhuh swee day-zoh-lay.”
  1. Combien ça coûte ? – When shopping, you might want to ask “How much does it cost?” This phrase is pronounced as “kohm-byen sah koot?”
  1. Où est… ? – If you’re looking for a specific place, you can ask “Where is…?” For example, “Où est la gare?” means “Where is the train station?” Pronounced as “oo eh…?”
  1. Quelle heure est-il ? – To ask for the time, you can say “What time is it?” Pronounced as “kell uhr eh-teel?”
  1. Je voudrais… – When ordering food or making a request, you can say “I would like…” For example, “Je voudrais un café” means “I would like a coffee.” Pronounced as “zhuh voo-dray…”
  1. Avez-vous… ? – Use this phrase to ask if someone has something. For example, “Avez-vous de l’eau?” means “Do you have any water?” Pronounced as “ah-veh voo…?”
  1. Je comprends – If you understand something, you can say “I understand.” Pronounced as “zhuh kohm-prahn.”
  1. Je ne sais pas – If you don’t know the answer to a question, you can say “I don’t know.” Pronounced as “zhuh nuh say pah.”
  1. Comment dit-on… en français ? – If you want to know how to say something in French, you can ask “How do you say… in French?” Pronounced as “koh-mahn dee-tohn… ahn frahn-say?”

Did you know any of these phrases in French? Do you use them while talking in French? If not, use them and make communication in French easy. 

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