Culture in France is significant to its citizens. Most foreigners are stuck to the idea that French people are rude. However, they are very polite and friendly if you interact with them based on their culture. Mastering French etiquette is relatively easy, as you will have innumerable opportunities to practice.
You can also gain adequate knowledge of French etiquette after taking a short language course. Luckily, several online courses with exceptional tutors are ready to take you through French culture, traditions, and language. In this article, we explore the etiquette and greetings you can learn in specialized French classes.
Greet Store Attendants
How you handle people working in stores is very vital in France. Unlike in places like America, you are obligated to greet people working in the shops. The French take this etiquette seriously. Those who don’t abide by it appear to be very rude. Wherever you go into any shop, greet the attendant with the customary “Bonjour Monsieur” or “Bonjour Madame,” depending on their gender.
It would be best to use “Bonsoir” instead of “Bonjour” in the evening. The good thing with the French people is that they will respect you for trying to keep up with this culture, even if you use “Bonjour” or “Bonsoir” wrongly while greeting them. When leaving the store, you can tell the shop attendant, “Au revoir madame/monsieur” or “Merci.”
Use “Tu” and “Vous” Correctly
Another must-know secret for not coming out as insulting to the French people is learning to say “you” because it comes in two forms; “tu” and “vous.” Unfortunately, it might take time for you to master this etiquette in order to apply it correctly. When you’re close to a person, like a family member or friend, you can use “tu.” However, if you still doubt how close you’re to someone, use “vous.” Unless someone permits you to use “tu” while addressing them, it is best to continue using “vous.”
Fascinatingly, today’s pop culture and the introduction of social media are destroying the “tu” form. Our generation seems to ignore the rules of using “tu” and “vous.” However, if you intend to be highly regarded by many French people, you should make an effort to master French effortlessly through online courses, which will guide you in abiding by the elementary rules when using “tu,” “vous,” and other essential etiquettes.
Do La Bise to Friends
The way the French deal with their friends is quite interesting. According to their culture, you must do the “La Bise” to your friends, even if they are in a group. While leaving, it is also considered rude whenever you tell a group of friends a general goodbye. In some areas, such a gesture is polite and is accepted. However, to most French people, it paints you as a rude individual.
While practicing French Etiquette, you will slowly embrace “the bise” or the French kiss tradition. Remember, when meeting a group of friends in France, you must greet each individual, or else they will conclude that you are snubbing them.
Don’t Expect Every French Speaks English
English is a dominant language spoken in almost every part of the world. However, that shouldn’t trick you into believing everyone speaks English, especially in France. Besides being exotic, the French language is also dominant and a national language in over 29 countries. Some residents in several French-speaking nations only speak French.
Addressing such people and expecting them to know English is rude. For instance, it is absurd to go to rural France and expect all of them to speak English. The best thing to do is to learn French in order to address everyone appropriately while in France or any French-speaking country.
Learn French Online to Relate Well with People in France
Consider taking an online French course if you plan to visit, work, or live in France. While learning the language, you will be taught French culture, traditions, and etiquette. This knowledge will make it easier for you to relate well with the people in France. Additionally, they will see you as a respectable person who loves their culture.