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 Click 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 Click 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 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".