100+ French Travel Phrases You’ll Need to Fall in Love with Paris

Planning a long-awaited vacation to France? Learn these 100+ French travel phrases now and take your traveling experience to the next level.

100+ French Travel Phrases You’ll Need to Fall in Love with Paris

“Paris is always a good idea”. Although wrongfully attributed to Audrey Hepburn, this quote is absolutely iconic. If you’ll watch the original 1954 Sabrina movie, you’ll see that Audrey doesn’t actually say this in it, but there is a Sabrina that does! Watch the remake from 1995 with Harrison Ford and Julia Ormond and you’ll have a surprise. Back to the city of lovers – yes, Paris and France are always a good idea. But you’ll need a few French travel phrases to experience your trip to France to the fullest. Why say “I would like a croissant” when you can say “Je voudrais un croissant”? A few common French phrases can make your vacation a lot more interesting… and even romantique!

basic french for travelers
“Je voudrais un croissant au chocolat et fraises.” ©Alexandra Gorn

There’s no denying that French has a certain elegance when it’s spoken by natives. It’s like a neverending ode to the gods of languages. Merde! It’s just… annoyingly beautiful! Even when you use bad words. And contagious. Challenge yourself and test this claim. Binge-watch some French movies this weekend (that’s easy!). But do it without trying (and failing) to speak French afterward. Kinda impossible. You’ll see.

But what are the French expressions that every traveler needs to know? Unfortunately, not every one of us is Dexter and “Omelette du fromage” doesn’t magically change us into French natives. Disappointing, I know. But don’t despair! This article has the best French travel vocabulary that will save you from the most embarrassing situations you can imagine.

  1. Bonjour and other basic French words you’ll need to say hello
  2. Useful French expressions for when you are at the airport
  3. Basic French for travelers who need help
  4. French for tourists who need a place to spend the night
  5. French travel phrases to help you experience French cuisine like a native
  6. Common French phrases for tourists who want to have fun
  7. Basic French phrases for your shopping adventures
  8. French love quotes and expressions for French love stories

P.S.: Listen to “La vie en rose” in the background while reading this article. The mood can’t get more French than that.

1. Bonjour and other basic French words you’ll need to say hello

When talking about French travel phrases, greetings should be no. 1 on your list of priorities. Foreigners regard your attempt to speak their language as a sign of respect towards their culture. Apply this unspoken rule everywhere you go in the world and many doors shall joyously open in your path.

  • Good morning! – Bonjour!
  • Good afternoon! – Bonne après-midi!
  • Good evening! – Bonne soirée!
  • Good night! – Bonne nuit!
  • Hello! – Bonjour!
  • How are you? – Comment ça va?
  • Very good. Thank you – Très bien, merci.
  • What is your name? – Quel est votre nom?
  • My name is Mondly. – Je m’appelle Mondly.
  • Nice to meet you. – Enchantée.
  • Please. – S’il vous plaît.
  • Thank you. – Merci.
  • I’m sorry. – Je suis désolé.
  • You’re welcome. – Je vous en prie.
basic french words
“Bonjour, monsieur pug!” by ©Charles Deluvio
  • Excuse me. – Excusez-moi.
  • No problem. – Pas de problème.
  • Do you speak _____? – Parlez-vous _____ ?
  • Do you have _____? – Est-ce que vous avez _____ ?
  • I have – J’ai
  • Speak slowly. – Parlez lentement.
  • I don’t understand. Please repeat. – Je ne comprends pas. Répétez, s’il vous plaît.
  • Where are you from? – D’où venez vous?
  • Have a good day. – Bonne journée.

2. Useful French expressions for when you are at the airport

Arriving at the airport – both at the beginning and at the end of your journey – will also require some French phrases. Whether you are making small talk with the person sitting next to you in the airplane, passport verification or asking for directions, these essential French travel phrases will definitely have your back in any situation.

  • Your passports, please. – Vos passeports, s’il vous plaît.
  • Here you are! – Voici!
  • We are traveling together. – Nous voyageons ensemble.
  • I’m traveling with a child. – Je voyage avec un enfant.
french travel vocabulary
©Bambi Corro
  • Is the flight delayed? – Le vol est-il retardé?
  • Is the flight cancelled? – Le vol est-il annulé?
  • When is the next flight to Rome? – Quand part le prochain avion pour Rome?
  • We need help boarding the plane. – Nous avons besoin d’aide pour embarquer dans l’avion.
  • Is this seat taken? – Est-ce que cette place est libre?
  • I would like to change my seat. – J’aimerais changer de place.

3. Basic French for travelers who need help

Getting lost in Paris, Nice, Marseille, or Cannes wouldn’t be so bad, wouldn’t it? It actually sounds like the perfect vacation, but the harsh reality of having a plane to catch and a boss to make happy will eventually ruin your dream. Do you know how to say “where is the airport” in French? Or “where is a pharmacy”? Switch your survival mode on and learn to ask the best questions in French.

  • Can you help me? – Pouvez-vous m’aider?
  • Could you help me, please? – Pourriez-vous m’aider, s’il vous plaît?
  • Can you help us? – Pouvez-vous nous aider?
  • Where is _____? – Où est _____ ?
  • Where is the airport, please? – Où est l’aéroport, s’il vous plaît?
  • Where is the tourist information office? – Où est l’office de tourisme?
  • Where is a taxi stand? – Où puis-je trouver une station de taxi?
  • Where can I find a taxi? – Où puis-je trouver un taxi?
  • Where is the toilet? – Où sont les toilettes?
  • Where is the bus station, please? – Où est le dépôt de bus, s’il vous plaît?
  • Where can I buy tickets? – Où puis-je acheter des billets?
basic french phrases
“Nice, France” by @Oscar Nord
  • Where is a pharmacy? – Où est la pharmacie?
  • Where is a supermarket? – Où puis-je trouver un supermarché?
  • Where is a good restaurant? – Où puis-je trouver un bon restaurant?
  • Is there a vegetarian restaurant nearby? – Est-ce qu’il y a un restaurant végétarien par ici?
  • Where is a bank, please? – Où puis-je trouver une banque s’il vous plaît?
  • Drive me to this address. – Conduisez-moi à cette adresse.
  • Please stop here. – Arrêtez-vous ici, s’il vous plaît.
  • Please wait a moment. – Attendez un moment, s’il vous plaît.
  • I’ll be back immediately. – Je reviens tout de suite.

4. French for tourists who need a place to spend the night

Staying in an Airbnb apartment or at a hotel requires some human interaction as well. The hotel staff is required to know English, but if you rent an apartment via Airbnb, there’s a big chance to bump into locals that don’t speak English at all. It’s simply better to be safe than sorry.

  • I have booked a room. – J’ai réservé une chambre.
  • The key for room _____, please. – La clé de la chambre _____, s’il vous plaît.
  • This room is too noisy. – Cette chambre est trop bruyante.
  • Do you have a firmer mattress? – Est-ce que vous avez un matelas plus ferme?
  • When is check-out time? – A quelle heure doit-on libérer la chambre?
basic french sentences
Paris by night by ©Jez Timms
  • Thank you for your help. – Merci pour votre aide.
  • How was your stay with us? – Comment a été votre séjour chez nous?
  • Very pleasant, thank you. – Très agréable, merci.
  • Here is your bill, please look it over. – Voici votre facture, vérifiez-la, s’il vous plaît.

5. French travel phrases to help you experience French cuisine like a native

There’s an incredible story behind the exquisite French cuisine. Its finesse and flavor are known all around the world and tasting it is a must for every tourist. If you are planning a trip to France, French cuisine should definitely be on your “to do” list. Add a delicious glass of Bordeaux wine and take your French trip to the next level!

  • I have a reservation. My name is _____. – J’ai fait une réservation au nom de _____.
  • I would like to cancel my reservation. – Je voudrais annuler ma réservation.
  • I would like to change my reservation. – Je voudrais modifier ma réservation.
  • We are ready to order. – Nous sommes prêts à commander.
  • What would you like to drink? – Que désirez-vous boire?
  • What would you recommend? – Qu’est-ce que vous nous recommandiez?
  • We would like two glasses of wine. – Nous voudrions deux verres de vin.
  • My wife would like a bowl of soup. – Ma femme voudrait un bol de soupe.
  • I’d like something without meat. – Je désirerais un plat sans viande.
  • Some salt and pepper also, please. – Encore du sel et du poivre, s’il vous plaît.
french expressions
“Des crêpes” by ©Alisa Anton
  • I would like a tea with lemon. – Je voudrais un thé au citron.
  • No sugar. – Sans sucre.
  • I’d like a mineral water. – J’aimerais une eau minérale.
  • I’d like an orange juice. – J’aimerais un jus d’orange.
  • I would like a coffee. – Je voudrais un café.
  • I would like a salad. – Je voudrais une salade.
  • I would like a soup. – Je voudrais une soupe.
  • I would like a dessert. – Je voudrais un dessert.
  • We would like to have breakfast. – Nous voudrions prendre le petit déjeuner.
  • We would like to have lunch. – Nous voudrions déjeuner.
  • We would like to have dinner. – Nous voudrions dîner.
  • What would you like for breakfast? – Que désirez-vous pour le petit déjeuner?

6. Common French phrases for tourists who want to have fun

Probably the most important phrases – for some of us – are those related to fun. Going out might tell you a lot about the country you are visiting. Are people drunk, friendly and talkative even at 2 or 3 a.m.? Is the city center empty at 11 o’clock? Never miss a chance to explore a city and know its people. Sleep is for the weak! Having fun is for travelers!

  • Is there a pub here? – Y a-t-il un bar ici?
  • There’s a free rock concert in the park. – Il y a un concert de rock gratuit dans le parc.
  • Would you like to dance? – Aimerais-tu danser?
  • Are tickets for the theatre still available? – Est-ce qu’il y a encore des places pour le théâtre?
  • Are tickets for the cinema still available? – Est-ce qu’il y a encore des places pour le cinéma?
  • Are tickets for the football game still available? – Est-ce qu’il y a encore des places pour le match de football?
french for tourists
©Diao Darius
  • Can you get me a ticket? – Pouvez-vous me procurer un billet?
  • How much are the admission tickets? – Combien coûtent les billets d’entrée?
  • How much does a ticket cost, please? – Combien coûte un billet, s’il vous plaît?
  • One ticket, please. – Un billet, s’il vous plaît.
  • Let’s have some fun. – Amusons-nous.
  • Are there seats available? – Est-ce qu’il reste des places?

7. Basic French phrases for your shopping adventures

Souvenirs are the cruelest drudgery our loved ones from home put us through while on holiday. The horror of shopping for souvenirs often haunts us until the very last day of our holiday. The best solution? Plan your shopping adventure on the first day of the trip and just get it over with.

  • How much does it cost? – Ça coûte combien?
  • I would like _____. – J’aimerais _____.
  • How much are they? – Combien coûtent-elles?
  • Can I have a receipt? – Puis-je avoir un reçu?
  • What would you like? – Que désirez-vous?
  • Can I have some ice cream? – Je peux avoir une glace?

8. French love quotes and expressions for French love stories

A short love story or an unexpected marriage proposal is every girl’s secret dream when traveling to France. Boys, don’t tie your shoelaces in Paris! You’ve been warned!

basic french travel phrases
©Gijs Coolen

But if you manage to get caught up in a passionate love story – “by mistake”, of course – it will be so much better if you have your French phrasebook on point. It’s time to get real and admit it! Travel phrases are not just for travel, they are also for connecting with new friends or maybe even… lovers?! Who knows? Poor Prince Charming could be stuck in a tree somewhere waiting. Travel as much as possible and find him when you least expect it.

Oh, and guys?! The same goes for Cinderella. Don’t wait for her. Look for her. And if she’s French, use these French love phrases to win her heart forever!

  • Let’s go dancing. – Allons danser.
  • Let’s go to a night-club. – Allons dans une discothèque.
  • I’d like to see you again. – J’aimerais vous revoir.
  • I’d like that very much. – Cela me plairait beaucoup.
  • You are very beautiful. – Tu es très belle.
  • You are very handsome. – Tu es très beau.
french love quotes
“Love” by ©Cedric Klei
  • May I kiss you? – Puis-je t’embrasser?
  • May I hold your hand? – Puis-je te prendre par la main?
  • I like you a lot. – Je t’aime beaucoup.
  • Are you single? – Es-tu célibataire?
  • I’m married. – Je suis marié.
  • I’m not interested. – Je ne suis pas intéressé.
  • Would you like to go out this evening? – Aimerais-tu sortir ce soir?
  • Would you like to have dinner with me? – Aimerais-tu dîner avec moi?
  • I love you. – Je t’aime.

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Diana Lăpușneanu - Linguist at Mondly Blog

Diana is a Linguist at Mondly by Pearson. Learning English as a second language early on fueled her lifelong passion for language learning, leading her to pursue a diverse array of languages as a hobby alongside her academic endeavors. With a Master’s Degree in advertising and a fascination for historical linguistics, she brings a unique perspective to her role, making language learning fun for readers worldwide.

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