Category Archives: French greetings

How to say hello in French

Learn to pronounce the 2 most used ways of how to say hello in French: ‘salut’ and ‘bonjour’ and learn when it’s appropriate to use these French words.

We already mentioned there are French flash cards on our site and in the shops with in built memory techniques. Another way of learning French words is using post-its. On any object in the house, you can put a post-it with the French translation of the English word.

And for those who have been on a holiday to France or to any French speaking country, you will have noticed you can buy all sorts of souvenirs like a coffee cup that greets you each morning saying "salut", which translates to "hello". I am sure you can buy them online as well 🙂

The easiest way how to say hello in French

A cup showing the French word 'Salut' which translates in Hello in English


The end letter ‘-t’ in salut is not pronounced and you have to pucker your lips as if you are about to give somebody a kiss, to get the correct "u" sound.

Listen to the pronunciation of "U" at 6 minutes 10 seconds in the above French video. You can practise the complete words when you click here for more French greetings.

What’s great about the French word salut is that you can use it both in casual situations:

  • to say Hi as well as
  • to say Bye (both in a casual way).

Most used of all French greetings: bonjour : Good day! Good morning! Good afternoon! Hello!… All can be translated with Bonjour!

How to answer a French greeting

French greetings are some of the first phrases that will you need when learning French. Equally important are the responses to the greetings. If you have a sharp ear, you can get by with just repeating the same phrase as the one you hear when French people greet you.

When you study French in France or travel to a French speaking country, you will hear these greetings and expressions on a daily basis, so they will quickly become internalized.

How to say hello in French summarized

  • Casual ‘Hi", ‘Hello’ : Salut
  • Casual and formal : Bonjour
  • Hello on the phone when you want to make sure that the line is clear: Allo?

How are you in French

How are you in French

See, hear and learn the 3 most common ways to say how are you in French: comment-allez vous, comment vas-tu and (comment) ça va?


When my niece who learned how to speak French taking French classes saw me this new year, she greeted me with : ‘comment-allez vous?’ in order to ask me how are you in French. Quite impressive for the following reason:

Comment-allez vous is the most formal and polite way to ask somebody how are you in French. When you are amongst friends, you would use the more informal or casual way to say how are you: comment vas-tu?

  • Comment means "how" in French.
  • Allez-vous and vas-tu are 2 ways to say "go you" in French: the first way is the formal and utterly polite way, the latter is the one you will use amongst your friends or who-ever you feel related to on a similar level (colleagues at work, your brothers and sisters…).

Then there is the third way to say how are you in French that you will hear a lot: (comment) ça va? , translated from French to English as : "it goes"? If you only want to remember one way of saying how are you in French, then remember ça va:

  • as you can both use it in formal and informal conversation – be it more informal than formal – and
  • it’s a perfect way to say "that all goes well".

However if you want to impress people with your politeness, then repeat what my niece said: comment allez-vous? You can’t go wrong with this way of saying how are you in French. And when the French person feels that you are ‘allowed’ to use the more casual way of saying how are you in French, he will answer your question with comment vas-tu.


How to say how are you in French audio examples


Below some common phrases that you can hear when you greet somebody in French,
illustrated with images from Megavocab Rocket French – the best way to learn over 1000 common French phrases easily

 Buy Megavocab Rocket French now for only $99.97

How are you in French audio transcript

  • Comment allez-vous? How are you? (formal-polite)
  • Comment ça va? How are things going with you?
  • Bonjour. Goodmorning / Goodday
  • Comment ça va? How are things going with you?
  • (Pas) très bien. (Not) very well.
  • Et vous? And you? (formal-polite)
  • Et toi? Comment vas-tu? And you? How are you (in a more casual French way)

If you want to learn more common French words and speak French fluently in 3 months, we recommend you buy Megavocab Rocket French now for only $99.97 and leave us your comments in the French you learn!

How to say how are you in French

How to say how are you in French

Listen to the most common ways how to say how are you in French: part of our free French language lessons online: French greetings.


Listen how to say how are you in French


Download and listen to the French audio how to say how are you in French (mp3, 4KB)


  • Polite: Bonjour. Comment allez-vous? Goodday/hello, how are you?
  • Casual: Salut. Comment vas-tu? Hi, how are you?
  • Pas mal. Not bad.


Learn how to speak French by simply listening and repeating the above French words as good as you can.


Casual hi, how are you in French.


In this online French class you will learn the difference between the formal and casual French language.


When talking to friends or family, the French say: Comment vas-tu? These French words literary translate to English as:


  • comment : how
  • vas : you go (casual)
  • tu : you (casual)


When the French become more formal and start talking to people they respect or meet for the first time, the French say Comment allez-vous? These French words literary translate to English as:


When talking to friends or family, the French say: Comment vas-tu? These French words literary translate to English as:


  • comment : how
  • allez : you go (formal)
  • vous : you formal)


Casual ‘tu’ – formal ‘vous’


The French have 2 ways of translating the word "you":


  • When talking to friends, they will use tu when they want to point to one person.
  • When talking to people they never saw before or in any case they want to point to more than one person, they will use vous.


French language courses will give you an extensive list when to use ‘tu
or ‘vous‘ but:


Rule of thumb: always use vous!


The first time you meet a French person, he will address you with "vous". When you get to know each other better (after a few bottles of French wine or after a few days interacting with each other on a more personal level), suddenly the French person will start using "tu".


Once that happens, you can safely start using "tu" as well. As usual follow the golden rules:


  • be a parrot: always repeat what you hear
  • in France, do what the French do


Hello, how are you in French – Not bad.


Listen again to the French audio how to say how are you in French and notice the last sentence:


  • Pas mal : Not bad


For now just notice that when you see the word "pas" in a French sentence, the French are expressing "not …":


  • pas bien : not good
  • pas mal : not bad


How to say how are you in French summary


This French lesson seems short but you learned 2 very important things in the French language:


  • the difference between formal and casual French
  • an introduction how the French say ‘not’


Read our previous post to learn more ways how to say how are you in French.

French Greetings


Enjoy speaking French greetings in less than 10 minutes! Download this free French language CD snippet. Listen and repeat the French words to learn how to speak French fast: about 10 minutes from now you will be able to fluently pronounce and remember all common French greetings!


Common French greetings


Did you ever tell yourself: "I want to learn French but I don’t have any time to enroll in a French course"?


The good news is that you can speak French or learn any language for that matter at home. Better still, thanks to French language CDs you can learn French anytime, anywhere.


These French language CDs will make you learn French easily, just like you learned your mother language: by listening and repeating.


Download these French Greetings (782KB – Learn French mp3) as an example. You will not only hear the French greetings, but you will be asked to repeat them. After you finished listening and repeating the French words, you will be surprised how fast they are embedded in your memory already.


Learn French greetings


Download and listen to the French Greetings anywhere you can: in your car, going to your office or in the shower and make sure you repeat the French words out loud!


This way you will learn French greetings without any effort as you can rewind the audio over and over again.


Greetings in French:


  • Paul: Salut Claire.
  • Claire: Salut, Paul. Comment ça va?
  • Paul: Bien merci, et toi?
  • Claire: Je vais très bien.


French language translation to English:


  • Paul: Hi Claire.
  • Claire: Hi Paul. How’s it going?
  • Paul: Good thanks, and you?
  • Claire: I’m going very well. (I am very fine)


French Christmas greetings


"Joyeux Noël" are the French greeting words you will hear around Christmas. Listen to the French pronunciation at : French Christmas Greetings.


How to greet people in French


You can have a look in our previous post how to greet someone in French: it does involve kissing… French greetings and salutations do differ depending on where you are in France:


  • most greeting in French is accompanied by one kiss on the left cheek and one on the right
  • in the south of France, the French greet by kissing once on the right once on the left
  • in Paris you could get double as much kisses: right, left right left
  • and in the west of France people will only give one kiss.


When you are new in France, you simply don’t join in the kissing and stick to the French greeting phrases you learned in the audio of this page.


When you don’t know when to use formal French greetings, informal greetings or French business greetings you have 2 options:


  1. always use Bonjour: as that’s both a formal as informal greeting, or:
  2. simply repeat the French language greetings you heard when the French person greeted you.


Simply repeating what you hear is the most simple and always accurate way to greet people in France!


Learning French greetings with French language CDs


Today you have learned not only the most common French greetings, you also learned that you can learn French fast by just listening to French language CDs.


When you are serious about learning French and you want to speak French fast and fluently, we do recommend you buy the complete set of French Language CDs now and learn more French words in the next few minutes! (Only $99.97: that’s 3 cent less than what I charge for 1 hour of teaching French.)

How are you in French

How are you in French 

In this free French lesson you will


  • learn how to say how are you in French
  • what to do when people continue the conversation.


How to say how are you in French


Look and listen how in the video French friends say hello how are you in French:



  • Hello, how are you : Salut, ça va?
  • "Fine" : Ça va.


Listen and look for the basics in any conversation


There are 2 ways learning how to speak French:


  1. learn to speak French only using your memory to learn French words and phrases
  2. learn to speak French using your whole body: your eyes, ears, imagination and gut feeling!


Even when you don’t understand any French words, or you switch off the volume of the above French video:


  • your gut feeling tells you that these French people are greeting each other
  • your imagination tells you that they are most likely asking how are you, and you, and what do we do next?


When you want to learn French fast: your imagination is your best friend. Both when it comes to learning French online, offline and especially when you follow French language courses in France:


  • although languages use different words,
  • people do communicate the same things over and over!


In most situations:


  • you will be able to imagine and guess what the other person is saying, and
  • your guessing will improve once you learn to recognise some basic French words.


Look back at the French greetings video above. Knowing that ça va literary means: it goes, try to figure out what the girl called Charlotte at the end is saying to the guys?


  • without understanding any words, you see that they are all leaving together…
  • when you did understand the girl saying "On y va?", you recognized the word va, which means ‘go’
  • so what do you guess she said?
    Right, Charlotte said: "Let’s go!".


Better than French language courses in France


French language course France


Yabla French provides a great way to practice your guessing and listening skills.


In stead of following French language courses in France where people speak and speak and speak, Yabla French offers you French videos from native French people with a "guess the missing word game"


All you need to do is look at the French video, listen to the French words and guess the missing French word. It’s a great way to improve your guessing skills and trust me: no other French course will teach you the importance of guessing.


Try Yabla out now! For only $9.95/month or less than 35¢ per day you can improve your French guessing skills using their huge inventory of French videos for all learn French levels: from French beginners till French experts.


Go and watch learn French videos now, with 7-day Money Back Guarantee.


How are you in French Video transcript


Before reading the French words below, your best way to learn the French language is watch the French video again and guess what they are trying to say.


Improving your guessing skills by watching peoples body language increases understanding the French words for 90%!


  • Salut! Ça va? (Hi! It goes?, meaning ‘How are you?’)
  • Ça va. Et toi? (It goes, meaning: ‘fine’. And you)
  • Ça va. (I’m fine)



  • Ça va?
  • Ça va. Et toi?



  • Salut!
  • Salut Charlotte!Ça va?
  • Ça va bien et toi? (I’m very well and you?, bien means well)
  • Très bien… (very well, très means very) Salut Miloud …Ça va?
  • Ça va. Et toi?
  • Très bien. On y va? (Shall we go?, literary translated: one there go?)
  • D’accord. (OK.)


If you want to remember anything from today’s French lesson is that you need to improve your imagination and guessing skill in order to learn French quick. You will learn how to speak French much quicker than when you only would rely on reading words in French language courses.


French kissing


Again, people all over the world want to express the same things but do it in different ways.


In Rome, do what the Romans do. In France, do what the French do. When it comes to French greetings, the French tend to kiss each other twice (one left, one right). If you don’t want to ruin a French girl’s make-up, do kiss the air left and right!


La bise, translated to ‘the kiss’, is the usual way French friends greet each other. When you visit France and get to know French people better, they could ask: on se fait la bise? Shall we kiss?


Again, listen for the basic word "bise", and you will know what they are trying to say or do 🙂


If you are not fond about giving and receiving kisses, you can equally well shake hands in France. Just be prepared for la bise when you decide to study French in France :-).


French greeting tips


The easiest way to greet anybody in France is starting out with a simple ‘Bonjour‘ which translates to "GoodDay" (listen to the French audio for Bonjour at our previous online French course: How to say hello in French)


Even when entering a waiting room or boarding a bus, the French will mutter bonjour as a general greeting to everyone within earshot.


How are you in French summarized


I can hear you saying: ‘eh, we hardly didn’t learn any new French words nor French phrases today’. (did you notice you learned the very useful French phrases for ‘very good’, ‘let’s go’ and OK – have a look again at the video!)


In this second of our French language lessons I wanted to emphasize that there is more to learning French than memorizing words out of a French course book:


  • look and listen to the French person
  • try to understand basic French words
  • imagine what he or she wants from you or tries to say to you
  • act accordingly
  • answer accordingly when you learn more French words and French phrases in our next course


The only mistakes when speaking and learning French are: closing your ears, mouth and imagination! Other than that: communicate in any way possible!


So how are you in French now? Ça va?

How to say hello in French

how to say hello in french

Listen to the 2 most used words in French and learn how to say hello in French.


This introduction to our free French lessons will teach you about French pronunciation, the French ‘u’ and the French nasal sounds.


Hello in French


In order to help you in learning to speak French well, you need French audio. We recommend the French tapes / French cds from Rocket French (99.95$ with Money Back Guarantee). Listen to the snippet below to say hello in French:


» Audio 1 French TapesClick to hear French Audio


  • Hi, how are you? Salut, ça va?
  • How are you? Ça va?


Hello in French is : Salut


  • The letter t is not pronounced and
  • you have to pucker your lips as if giving a kiss and then pronounce the u.


How are you is translated with saying literary : It goes? Ça va?


Notice that Ç , (a c with a 5 underneath) is one of the French ways of depicting an S sound.


Hello how are you in French?



Try to repeat the French audio as is without looking at the transcript of the French audio because… the French writing will confuse you in the beginning! We will explain more in detail below.


Transcript of the French audio:


  • Good day madam : Bonjour Madame.
  • Good day sir : Bonjour Monsieur.


  • Hello Paul, is it going well today : Salut Paul, ça va bien aujourd’hui?


French nasal sounds


French people use "their noses" not only to eat their delicious French food, but also to pronounce what is called "nasal sounds".


Nasal sounds are like trying to speak without opening your mouth and you will feel a kind of humming vibration in your nose!


When a French vowel (a,e,i,o,u) is followed by m or n, the ‘m’ or ‘n’ is silent and the vowel should be pronounced in your nose :

    the sound made when kids close there noses to act as if they are speaking on the phone.


» Audio 2 French TapesClick to hear French Audio


Listen and repeat as good as you can, open your mouth as little as possible:


  • French nasal sounds like un :
    • un (1)
  • French nasal sounds like in :
    • cinq 5), quinze 15), vingt (20)
  • sounds like en :
    • trente (30), Henri, Jean, comment (how)
  • sounds like on :
    • onze (11), bonjour (good day, hello), bonsoir (good evening), Simon


French greetings


French greetings are the first phrases you can use immediately when learning French.


Equally important are the responses to the greetings. When you have a sharp ear are a master parrot, you French greeting could be just repeating the same phrase as the one you heard when a French person greeted you.


When you learn French in France or travel to France for holidays, you will hear French greetings on a daily basis, so you will internalize them fast. Just go greeting every French person you see in the streets!


How to say hello in French summarized


  • Casual ‘Hi", ‘Hello’ : Salut
  • Casual and formal : Bonjour


 Notice that what the French write doesn’t look the same as what you hear.


Be aware of French nasal sounds written like "an", "in", "en", "on" and "un".