helpful french words and phrases

34 helpful & fun french words and phrases

Last Updated on October 3, 2022 by Pamela

Contrary to rumours, you do not have to speak French to visit Quebec City, however, knowing some French or Québécois words and phrases can be helpful. A bonjour and a smile can go a long way at times. I struggle with my French daily, but having lived in this city for over four years I’ve learned that making an effort and failing is better than walking around assuming the locals will speak English. Not many people do the latter, but it happens and I find myself cringing each time I witness their folly.

Some words and phrases below are français français (french French), while others are strictly Québécois. All are used and understood in Quebec City (as well as throughout the province).

Bonjour

Hello

Bonne journée

Have a good day

Bonsoir

Good evening (welcome)

Bonne soirée

Good evening (as a goodbye)

S’il vous-plaît

Please

Merci

Thank you

Comme tu t’appelles?

What’s your name?

Je m’appelle

My name is …

Je parle un peu français

I speak a little French

Parlez-vous anglais?

Do you speak English?

Je ne comprends pas

I don’t understand

Ça va?

How are you? / Are you okay?

À tantôt!

See you soon (short future)

Où sont les toilettes?

Where is the toilet?

J’ai besoin d’aide

I need help

Je suis malade

I am sick

Désolé

Sorry

Parlez lentement s’il-vous-plaît

Please speak slowly

Facture, s’il vous-plaît

Check, please

Pour ici

For here / eat here

Pour emporter

Take away

Combien?

How much?

Puis-je avoir un bière/soda?

Can I have a beer/soda?

Puis-je avoir un menu?

Can I have a menu?

Tabarnak!

F*ck

Osti!

Damn it!

Lendemain de veille

Hungover

Mets-en

For sure!

T’es ben chix!

You’re hot!

Aweille

Move your ass!

Elle m’a choké!

She stood me up!

T’es faite à l’os

You’re dead meat

Tu me gosses

You’re annoying me

Tu te prends pas pour de 7UP flat

You’re full of yourself


quebec city hotel recommendations

The hotels listed below are my current favourites. I have stayed in each of these properties and often recommend them to out-of-town friends and family. List this will change over time as I make my rounds through the various accommodations in Quebec City.

  • Château Frontenac – from the decorations to the overall luxurious vibe of the hotel, this is truly a magical place to sleep. The views of Old Québec and the Saint-Lawrence River help too. LGBTQIA2S+ safe space
  • Auberge Saint-Antoine – Located in Vieux-Port this luxury boutique hotel is close to the old city and offers rooms with insanely comfy beds and pretty views. LGBTQIA2S+ safe space
  • Hôtel Nomad – Located near Château Frontenac, this small boutique hotel has themed rooms, each one beautiful and luxurious in its own way.
  • Hôtel Manoir Victoria – Close to the action on rue Saint-Jean, this boutique hotel has a modern-contemporary vibe, as well as a pool and spa. A lovely base for a Christmas holiday.
  • Hôtel 71 – Across the street from Musée de la Civilization, Hôtel 71 is a beautiful boutique hotel with views of the Saint-Lawrence River and Old Québec. The rooms are spacious and the beds are quite cozy!
  • Monastère des Augustines – This former monastery is now an award-winning health and wellness retreat in the heart of Old Quebec. They also have a museum and a health-focused restaurant.
  • Château Frontenac – from the decorations to the overall luxurious vibe of the hotel, this is truly a magical place to sleep. The views of Old Québec and the Saint-Lawrence River help too. LGBTQIA2S+ safe space
  • Auberge Saint-Antoine – Located in Vieux-Port this luxury boutique hotel is close to the old city and offers rooms with insanely comfy beds and pretty views. LGBTQIA2S+ safe space
  • Hôtel Nomad – Located near Château Frontenac, this small boutique hotel has themed rooms, each one beautiful and luxurious in its own way.
  • Hôtel Manoir Victoria – Close to the action on rue Saint-Jean, this boutique hotel has a modern-contemporary vibe, as well as a pool and spa. A lovely base for a Christmas holiday.
  • Hôtel 71 – Across the street from Musée de la Civilization, Hôtel 71 is a beautiful boutique hotel with views of the Saint-Lawrence River and Old Québec. The rooms are spacious and the beds are quite cozy!
  • Monastère des Augustines – This former monastery is now an award-winning health and wellness retreat in the heart of Old Quebec. They also have a museum and a health-focused restaurant.