Learn Canadian French? Go here

Basic Tourist French

Going to France soon? The French have an undeserved reputation for being ‘snooty’ – especially in Paris. However, by making an effort to learn a few travel-oriented phrases before your trip, you’ll be able to communicate well enough to discover more than a few French people who are exceptionally hospitable and willing to help.

Getting Around

The best way to travel through France is generally by train. However, depending on where you are going and what you’re doing, you may want to rent or take a cab. The following are a few phrases that can come in handy.

Taking the Train

The train is the easiest way to get around in Paris, the surrounding neighborhoods, and through France. It is relatively cheap, and most people use it to travel through Europe as well. The following phrases may come in handy.

The Train Station
Est-ce que c’est le bon quai pour le train de. . .(Paris, Marseilles, etc.)eh-skuh say luh bohn kay poor luh trehn duhIs this the right platform for the train to. . .
Est-ce que la place est prise?eh-skuh lah plahs ay preezIs this seat taken?
Je voudrais l’horaire.zhuh-voo-dray l’oorairI’d like the schedule.
Je voudrais un billet en aller retour pour…zhuh-voo-dray uhn-bee-yay ehn-ah-lay ruh-toor poor…I’d like a round trip ticket to. . .
Je voudrais un billet en aller simple pour…zhuh-voo-dray uhn-bee-yay ehn-ah-lay sahm-pluh poor…I’d like a one way ticket to. . .
Où est le guichet?ooh-ay-luh-gee-shayWhere’s the ticket counter?
Où sommes-nous?oo sum-nooWhere are we?
Quand part le prochain train pour…kahn pahr luh proh-shehn trehn poor. . .When does the next rain for ____ leave?
Quel est le tarif jusqu’à Paris?kell-ay luh-tah-reef zhuh-skah Pah-reeHow much does it cost for a ticket to Paris?

Taking a Cab

If you’re not willing or able to take the train, a cab is your next best bet. You’ll pay more, but at least you won’t get lost. Additionally, most taxi cab drivers, at least in Paris itself, speak some English.

In the Cab
Combien est-ce que je vous dois?coh-bee-ehn eskuh zhuh voo dwahHow much do I owe you?
Est-ce que vous pouvez m’emmener à…eh-skuh voo poo-vay muh-muh-nay ahCan you take me to. . .
Je suis pressé(e).zhuh-swee-preh-sayI’m in a hurry.
Je voudrais aller àzhuh voo-dray ah-lay ahI’d like to go to. . .
Pouvez-vous m’attendre?poo-vay voo mah-tahn-druhCan you wait for me?
Tourner à gauche/droitetoor-nay ah goe-sh/dwotTurn right/left

Renting a Car

Renting a car is generally only advisable for tourists who want to traverse the country. With that said, if renting a car is in your plans, the following translations can be helpful.

Traveling by Car
Dois-je payer par kilomètre ?dwah-zhuh pay-yay pahr kee-lo-met-ruhDo I pay by kilometer?
Je voudrais louer un voiture s’il vous plaîtzhuh voo-dray loo-ay uhn vwah-toor see-voo-playI’d like to rent a car please
L’assurance est-elle comprise ?lah-soor-ahns et-ell cohm-preezIs insurance included?
Le plein s’il vous plaît.luh plehn see-voo-playFill it up, please
Où est le station-service le plus proche?oo ay luh-stah-see-ohn luh ploo prosh?Where is the closest gas station?
Où puis-je prendre la voiture ?oo pwee-zhuh prohn-druhWhere do I pick up the car?
Quand dois-je la rendre ?kahn dwah-zhuh lah rohn-druhWhen do I have to return the car?

Out and About

Dining Out

Regardless of your business in France, you will need to eat while you’re there. Something to remember is that tipping is strictly optional in France – it is completely acceptable to not leave a tip.

Ordering in French
J’ai terminézhay tair-mee-nayI am finished
Je vais prendrezuh vay prohn-druhI’ll have. . .
Je voudraiszhuh voo drayI would like
L’addition, s’il vous plaîtlah-dee-see-ohn see-voo-playThe check please
Je n’en peux pluszhuh nohn puh plooI’m full
Je vous écoutezuh vooz-ay-cootWhat would like (less formal)?
la cartelah cahrtWhat American speakers would call ‘the menu.’
le menuluh meh-nooThe fixed-price menu; offers two or more course meals for a fixed price
Service comprissair-vee cohm-preeservice charge included (takes the place of a tip)


At the Hotel

Remember in France that you may need to request a bathroom and shower in your room if that’s what you expect. It is not at all uncommon for guests to have to share a bathroom or walk down the hall to the showers.

Avez-vous une piscine?ah-vay voo oon pee-seenDo you have a pool?
Completcohm-plehThere’s no vacancy.
Je vais payer en espèceszhuh vay pay-yay ohn eh-spehsI’ll pay cash
Je voudrais être réveillé à six heureszhuh voo-ray eh-truh ray-vay-yay ah seez-urI want a six o’clock wake up call.
Je voudrais une chambre à deux litszhuh voo-dray uhn shom-bruh ah duh leeI’d like a room with two beds
Je voudrais une chambre avec une douche dans la chambre.zhuh voo-dray oon shom-bruh ah-vek oon doosh dahn la shom-bruhI’d like a room that has a shower in it.
Quelle est l’heure limite d’occupation ?kell ay lur lee-meet doh-coo-pah-see-ohnWhen is check-out?

Daily Activities

These phrases come in handy no matter where you are, or what you’re doing.

Miscellaneous Useful Phrases
Combien coûte…cohm-bee-ehn cootHow much does ______ cost?
Je cherche…zhuh shairshI’m looking for. . .
Je suis perduzhuh-swee pair-dooI’m lost
Où se trouve…oo suh-trooveWhere is. . .
Pouvez-vous m’aider?poo-vay voo med-ayCan you help me?
Original Content: http://french.lovetoknow.com/


Register New Account
Already have an account?
Reset Password
Compare items
  • Total (0)