Europe Forums

Post New Topic

Recent Activity

  • How do you plan your trips?
  • Please help us learn by participating in a brief survey.
View all Europe activity »
  1. 1 France Itinerary Advice
  2. 2 Train in Switzerland from Basel to Zermatt to Zurich
  3. 3 3 days in Normandy (with an 8 year old)
  4. 4 Murren to Prague
  5. 5 Le Marche Research Help
  6. 6 10 days in Italy with 5 and 10 year olds in July :)
  7. 7 lurento sports car rental - anyone?
  8. 8 Trip Report "Paris? Again?" And an odd pickpocketing
  9. 9 Public Transportation in England
  10. 10 Help with Transportation Options in London
  11. 11 Any good apps for Amsterdam?
  12. 12 Vegetarian Food in Spain & Portugal
  13. 13 Barcelona, Bilboa, Cuena, Madrid
  14. 14 best place in london for indian food without paying an arm and a leg
  15. 15 Short stay London with Aussie kids or not?
  16. 16 Day trips: which ones are must-do?
  17. 17 DECORATED FARMHOUSES OF HÄLSINGLAND IN SWEDEN
  18. 18 Gorges de Verdon to Eze - where to stay along way?
  19. 19 Sintra
  20. 20 Venice Bell Tower
  21. 21 Heathrow Terminal 2 - Immigration, Bags & Pick-Up
  22. 22 10 days Greece in mid-Sept 2017
  23. 23 Croatia - Help on itinerary
  24. 24 Early Itinerary Munich to Croatia
  25. 25 4 Days In Northern Italy advice
View next 25 » Back to the top

French in France - "Tu" or "Vous"?

Jump to last reply

A perplexing question often not only for foreign visitors to France but to the French themselves is whether to use the "tu" form of "you" or the "vous" form for "you". The 'tu' form being traditionally judiciously used only for folks you really feel dear or close to - family and close friends mainly and the 'vous' form for all others, including neighbors and colleagues at work - the vast majority of daily greetings would be 'tu' - this all recently explained to me by a friend friend who is visiting my house for a few weeks -

after I asked her that I had read recently on Fodors that one Fodorite residing in England and who was furiously studying French had posted that it was her understanding that there had been some recently cracks in the 'tu' - 'vous' facade and that 'tu' was now being more widely used - and in response to that query my friend firmly stated - "No not all all" - saying there was certainly not any lessening of the 'tu' and 'vous' gulf and that she only used 'tu' with dear friends and family.

She did explain that one neighbor from North Africa called he 'tu' so she reciprocated but otherwise stated that she would never ever use the 'tu' form with neighbors or colleages at work unless they were also dear friends.

So for travelers not knowing the ins and outs of the 'tu' and 'vous' conundrum I guess are best off always using 'vous' unless they are talking with relatives or close friends.;

Well that is at least one French women's take on it all - do other French agree or not - that the 'tu'-'vous' matter is basically unchanged and one should be very careful in using 'tu' lest they be considering being too familiar!

133 Replies | Jump to bottom Add a Reply
133 Replies |Back to top

Sign in to comment.

Advertisement