Basic French Greetings(Complete Lesson with MP3!) -Talk in French
Talk in French
Shares

Basic French Greetings (Complete Lesson with MP3!)

basic-french-greetings-lesson-audio-fb

One of the very first things you need to know when learning a new language is the basic greetings.

How do you say hello and introduce yourself in French? In this article which originally appeared as the first lesson in the new book My French Routine Volume 1, we will learn all about the basic French greetings.

This lesson will cover:

  • Formal and informal greetings
  • Listening exercises: you can download the MP3 fileswith a requirement to subscribe to the weekly newsletter. If you already signed up before, check your French Learning Package. The MP3 tracks are already there.
  • Conversation topics during introduction
  • Pronunciation practice
  • Mini quiz
Basic French Greetings (download free Complete Lesson with MP3)

Let’s start the lesson with a sample scenario

Listen to track 1.

Man: Bonjour, comment ça va ? (Hello, how are you?)

Child: Bonjour, ça va bien. Comment allez-vous ? (Good, thanks. How are you?)

Man: Je vais bien, merci. (I am good, thank you.)

Child: Comment vous appelez- vous? (What is your name?)

Man: Je m’appelle Monsieur Dupont. Et toi ? (My name is Mister Dupont. And you?)

Child: Je m’appelle Kévin. (My name is Kevin.)

Man: Au revoir, Kévin. (Good bye, Kevin.)

Child: A bientôt, Monsieur Dupont ! (See you soon, Mister Dupont!)

 

Now, let’s continue with some Standard/ Formal Greetings.

 

Standard/Formal Greetings 

Listen to track 2

When greeting someone during the day, you would usually say “Bonjour,” which means “Good day”; if it is evening, you can say “Bonsoir,” which means “Good evening.”

There are a few ways to say goodbye, the most common being “Au revoir,” which means “See you again.” You can use this phrase any time of day. You can also use the following phrases at different times of the day:

  • In the morning, you could say “Bonne journée, which means “Have a good day.”
  • In the afternoon, you could say “Bon après-midi,” which means “Have a good afternoon.”
  • In the evening, you could say “Bonne soirée,” whichmeans “Have a good evening.”
  • At bedtime, you would usually say“Bonne nuit, which means “Good night” in the same way that we mean it in English.

Informal Greetings

If that seems a little too complicated, then you could just say Salut!”. This is an informal greeting that means “Hello,” but can be used to say “Goodbye” as well, plus you can use it at any time of the day.

However, it is a good idea to learn the various greetings and be able to say them accurately in French, especially if you will be conversing with people you do not know very well. It is simply polite to use more formal greetings; Salut is really only something you should use with friends or in informal situations — i.e., not with your boss!

Listening and Practice

Listen to track 3

  • Bonjour
  • Bonsoir
  • Au revoir
  • Bonne journée
  • Bon après-midi
  • Bonne soirée
  • Bonne nuit

After greeting someone, you may wish to continue the conversation. There are two questions you will usually ask.

Listen to track 4

Here is the first: Ask how someone is doing.

There are two ways to ask this question; your choice will depend on whether it is a formal or informal situation.

Formal way:

Question: “Comment allez-vous?”

Answer: “Je vais bien, merci” (I am good, thank you)

Informal way:

Question: “Comment ça va?”

Answer: “ça va bien, merci.” (Good, thanks)

 

Next, you might ask the person’s name, if you do not know him or her.

Question:

Comment tu t’appelles?” (informal)

Comment vous vous appelez?” (formal)

 

Answer: “Je m’appelle (your name), et toi?” (“et toi” means “and you”)

 

Pronunciation

Now, let’s practice your pronunciation. Listen to the audio track (transcription below) and try to repeat the word.

Listen to track 5

Bonjour = Hello

Bonsoir = Good evening

Au revoir = Goodbye

Bonne nuit = Good evening

 

Formal situation: Listen to track 6

Comment allez-vous? (How are you?)

Bien, merci. (Good, thank you.)

Et vous? (And you?)

Très bien, merci. (Very well, thank you.)

 

Informal situation (with friends): Listen to track 7

Salut, Sharon ca va? (Hi, Sharon, how are you?)

Ça va bien. Et toi ?  (I am good, and you?)

Pas mal. (Mean“Not bad,” but in French it has a positive meaning.)

Au revoir ! (See you again!)

A demain! (See you tomorrow!)

Exercises

Let’s begin with a simple exercise to help you memorize what you have just learned.

 

Fill in the gap: 

Sophie (Mrs): Bonjour Monsieur.

Jean Dubois (Mr): ______Madame.

Sophie: Comment allez-vous?

Jean Dubois: _____, merci, et vous?

Sophie: ______, merci.

Jean Dubois: Comment vous vous appelez?

Sophie: ______ Sophie. __________?

Jean Dubois: Je m’appelle Jean Dubois.

 

Answers: Listen to track 8

Sophie (Mrs): Bonjour Monsieur.

Jean Dubois (Mr): Bonjour Madame.

Sophie: Comment allez-vous?

Jean Dubois: Bien, merci, et vous?

Sophie: Bien, merci.

Jean Dubois: Comment vous appelez-vous?

Sophie: Je m’appelle Sophie. Et vous?

Jean Dubois: Je m’appelle Jean Dubois.

 

Translate from English into French:

 

Formal situation:

  • Hello, Sir!
  • Hello Sharon, how are you today?
  • I am fine, and you?
  • I am good, too.

 

Informal situation:

  • Hi Claire.
  • Hi Lisa.
  • How are you?
  • Not bad, and you?
  • Good.

 

Additional Exercises

Practice Corner — Listening Part 1:

Listen to track 9 and repeat

  • Bonjour (Hello)
  • Bonsoir (Good evening)
  • Bonne journée (Good day)
  • Bonne soirée (Good evening)
  • Bonne nuit (Good night)
  • Au revoir (Goodbye)
  • Salut (Hi)
  • Comment allez-vous? (How are you?)
  • Comment ça va? (How are you?)
  • À demain (See you tomorrow)
  • À bientôt (See you soon)
  • À tout à l’heure (See you later)
  • À ce soir  (See you tonight)
  • Comment t’appelles-tu? (What is your name?)
  • Comment vous appelez-vous? (What is your name?)
  • Je m’appelle … et toi? (My name is… And you?)
  • Quel âge as-tu? (How old are you?)
  • J’ai … ans  (I’m … years old)
  • Où habites-tu? (Where do you live?)
  • J’habite à … (I live in …)

 

Practice Corner — Listening Part 2:

Listen to the dialogue (track 10) and answer the questions below. If it is too difficult, read the transcription without the translation and try to answer the questions.

 

Questions about the dialogue:

 

Comment s’appelle la femme ? (What is the woman’s name?)

1) Sophie       2) Anna         3) Jeanne     4) Manon

 

Comment s’appelle l’ami de la femme ? (What is the name of the woman’s friend?)

1) Jean           2) Gilbert        3) Pierre        4) Eric

 

Comment va Pierre ? (How is Pierre?)

1) Mal (bad)   2) Bien (fine)             3) Pas très bien (not very good)          4) Super bien (very good)

 

Réponses / Answers:

1 – 3 – 2

Transcription: Listen to track 10

Woman: Salut, Martin! (Hi, Martin!)

Man 1: Salut, Sophie! Ca va? (Hi, Sophie! How are you?)

Woman: Je vais bien, et toi? (I’m fine, and you?)

Man 1: Ca va aussi. C’est ton ami? (I’m fine too. Is he your friend?)

Woman: Oui, c’est mon ami. Il s’appelle Pierre. (Yes, he is my friend. His name is Pierre.)

Man 1: Bonjour, Pierre. Comment vas-tu? (Hello, Pierre. How are you?)

Man 2: Je vais bien, merci. Bonne journée! (I’m fine, thank you. Have a good day!)

Man 1: A toute à l’heure! (See you later!)

 

—-

Do you want more lessons? Get your copy today of  My French Routine Volume 1.

 

Each lesson is structured in such a way that you will quickly grasp the ideas with the help of the audio tracks. You can listen to dialogue recorded by French speakers, follow along to practice pronunciation, and practice your listening at the same time.

This book is a complete learning method perfect for anyone who wants to learn French on their own. Volumes 2 to 6 are also available. 

About the Author Frederic

Frederic Bibard is the founder of Talk in French, a company that helps french learners to practice and improve their french. Macaron addict. Jacques Audiard fan. You can contact him on Twitter and Google +

follow me on: