It is considered impolite to speak loudly in public, to chew gum in public, and to smoke in many public places.
It is also considered impolite to interrupt someone who is speaking, and it is considered very bad manners to discuss politics or religion with strangers.
Never Underestimate How Far a Few French Words Can Go
Regarding learning a foreign language, many people underestimate the power of a few key phrases. While it’s true that fluency in a language requires a significant investment of time and effort, even a limited working knowledge can go a long way toward making your travels more enjoyable.
This is certainly the case in France, where even a smattering of the local language can help you navigate your way around with far less frustration. Of course, there are certain basics that any traveler should master before setting off for France, such as how to say “hello,” “please,” and “thank you.” But once you’ve got those down, don’t be afraid to try your hand at some more advanced phrases.
Here are just a few examples of how learning some basic French can make your trip to France more enjoyable:
1. Ordering food and drink: Knowing how to read a menu and place an order in French will make dining out much less stressful-and may even earn you some bonus points with the locals. Start by memorizing key words and phrases like “I would like,” “the bill please,” and “I don’t eat meat/fish/dairy.” Then practice ordering different types of dishes and drinks until you’re comfortable doing so in French.
2. Asking for directions: Even if you’re carrying around a good map (or better yet, have GPS on your phone), there will inevitably be times when you need to ask someone for directions while traveling in France. When this happens, having at least some basic French under your belt will make getting where you need to go much easier-and may even help prevent getting lost altogether! Before heading out, brush up on key words and phrases like “Where is…?”, “Can you show me on the map?”, and “Is this the right way to…?” Then practice using them with friends or family members until you feel confident enough to use them in real-life situations.
3. Making small talk: One of the best things about traveling is meeting new people from all over the world-but if you can’t speak their language, communication can be pretty difficult (not to mention frustrating). Learning even just a few minutes’ worth of small talk in French will help break the ice when meeting new people, whether they’re fellow travelers or locals who strike up conversations with you while out exploring. To get started, try memorizing some simple conversation starters.
Never Wave Wildly at a Waiter to Get Their Attention
If you want to get a waiter’s attention in France, don’t wave your arms wildly like you might at home. In France, this is considered very rude and will likely result in the waiter ignoring you altogether. Instead, simply raise your hand and make eye contact with the waiter. If they are busy, they may not be able to come to your table right away, but they will eventually make their way over.
Try Not to Speak Louder Than Everyone Else, Particularly at Night
France is a country with a rich culture and history, and its people are passionate about many things – from food and wine to art and fashion. However, there is one thing that French people are particularly sensitive about, and that is the volume of their voices.
In general, French people tend to speak more quietly than people from other cultures, particularly at night. This can be surprising for visitors who are used to speaking loudly in their own countries. But it’s important to remember that speaking too loudly in France can be considered impolite or even rude.
Of course, there will be times when you need to speak up – for example, if you’re ordering food in a restaurant or asking for directions on the street. But in general, it’s best to keep your voice down, especially after dark.
So next time you’re planning a trip to France, remember to pack your best indoor voice – and enjoy the peaceful evenings in one of the world’s most beautiful countries!
Never Leave Your Cell Phone Out When Having a Coffee Meal With Friends
If you are planning a trip to France, or even if you are just spending time with French friends, there is one important rule to remember: never leave your cell phone out when having a coffee or meal with friends. This may seem like common sense, but in France, it is considered incredibly rude to be on your phone when you are with other people.
If you absolutely must use your phone, step away from the table and go into another room. You should also turn off your phone’s ringer so that it does not disrupt the conversation. If you are expecting an important call, apologize in advance and explain that you will take the call outside.
In general, try to limit your use of social media while in France. It is considered very impolite to be constantly checking Facebook or Instagram while you are supposed to be enjoying the company of others. If you must post about your meal or coffee break on social media, do it after the fact rather than during.
By following these simple rules, you can avoid offending anyone and enjoy a more authentic experience during your time in France.