If you are planning on visiting a French-speaking country or city in the near future, you should, of course, learn about their history, culture and most interesting activities but you should also learn a few basic words. We’ve compiled a list of 17 basic words to learn right away for ANYONE visiting a French-speaking country.

You’re lucky, some words in English and French are the same: menu, restaurant, information, television, communication, etc. Here are basic words to learn. And if you find this article useful, you should read the one about the 200 most used French words.

1S’il vous plait (please)


This is maybe THE most important word you can learn. A please can take you far and honestly no one likes rude people, wherever you travel to. (see-voo-play)

2Merci (thank you)


This might be the other most important word you can learn. Do you want spit in your soup? Someone to scream at you? People to hate you? Then say merci. (mair-see)

3De rien (you’re welcome)


De rien is a word you might not use as much as merci or s’il vous plait but you should still know this word.