French »  Basic »  Polite Remarks

In this lesson you will learn about Polite Remarks.


[ Congratulations]

Congratulations - Felicitations.

Polite Remarks - French

When traveling in France, being polite is absolutely essential - be sure you know how to say "please" and "thank you" at the very least. Good manners are of primary importance in French culture; being polite, formal and proper is the most socially acceptable way to be. It's considered common courtesy.

When you’re introduced to a French person, you should say ‘good day, Sir/Madam’ ( bonjour madame/ monsieur) and shake hands (a single pump is enough – neither limp nor knuckle-crushing). Salut (hi or hello) is used only among close friends and young people. When saying goodbye, it’s a formal custom to shake hands again. In an office, everyone shakes hands with everyone else on arrival at work and when they depart.

In France, when you walk into a store, it is customary to say, “Bonjour, Madame” (it literally means, “Good day, Ma’am”) or “Bonjour, Monsieur” (Good day, Sir). When you leave the shop you say, “Au revoir, Madame” (“Goodbye, Ma’am) or “Au revoir, Monsieur” (Goodbye, Sir). The shopkeeper will say the same thing to you. When you don’t exchange such pleasantries, it can come across as rude or ill mannered.

Titles should generally be used when addressing or writing to people, particularly when the holder is elderly

The French love detailed and often heated discussions, but there are certain topics of conversation that need handling with care. These include money, which is generally avoided by the French; it’s a major faux pas to ask a new acquaintance what he does for a living, as his job title will often give an indication of his salary. When conversing, even in the midst of a heated debate, avoid raising your voice, which is considered vulgar. Note also that the French often stand close when engaging in conversation, which you may find uncomfortable or even threatening at first.

Congratulations: Félicitations

Example: Congratulations on your new job!

Good luck: Bonne chance

Example: Good luck on your examine! Bonne chance pour l'examen!

Sit down, please: Asseyez-vous, s'il vous plait.

Can I help you?: Puis-je vous aider?

Condolences in your sorrow: Condoléances à votre chagrin.

Please reply as soon as possible. - Veuillez, s'il vous plaît, répondre dès que possible.

Would you please send me…- Auriez-vous l'obligeance de m'envoyer...

Would you be so kind to…Seriez-vous assez aimable pour...

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