Finding the courage to ask someone out on a date is not easy… let alone trying to find the right words in French. Learn the French flirting vocabulary and expressions, famous French pick-ups lines, how to ask someone out in French + tips
So, you met a Frenchwoman or a Frenchman, and you’d like to seduce her or him. Well, you can’t possibly start by saying I love you in French – which is probably the only thing you learned in school that would be remotely connected to flirting in French…
I’ll help you out! Let’s jump right into the flirting in French scene with some common sentences to flirt in French.
1 – Typical Phrases To Flirt in France
Here are some typical phrases used to flirt in French:
- Excuse-moi, tu as l’heure ?
Excuse me, do you have the time?
- Pardon, tu aurais du feu/une cigarette ?
Sorry, would you have a lighter/ a smoke (yep, a lot of people smoke in France)
- Tu es avec quelqu’un ?
Are you with someone ?
- Tu veux (aller) boire un verre ?
Would you like (to go for) a drink?
- Je peux t’offrir un verre ?
May I buy you a drink ?
- Tu viens souvent ici ?
Do you come here often ?
- Tu veux aller faire un tour ?
Do you want to get out of here ?
- On pourrait peut être aller… au cinéma/au restaurant/faire une balade…
Maybe we could go… to the movies/to a restaurant/take a walk
- Tu es libre pour le dîner samedi ?
Are you free for dinner on Saturday?
- Tu me donnes ton numéro ?
Could you give me your phone number ?
- On peut peut-être échanger nos numéros ?
Maybe we can exchange phone numbers
In my Intermediate French audiobook learning method, you’ll witness the start of a romance between Claudia and a French guy named Pierre! (À Moi Paris L3 – ch 9, 12, 13)
Now let’s see some French flirting vocabulary.
2 – French Flirting Vocabulary
- Draguer – to seduce/to flirt (common slang)
- Un dragueur – a seducer (common slang)
- La drague – seduction (common slang)
- Séduire – to seduce
- Un séducteur, une séductrice – a seducer
- La séduction – seduction
- Flirter – to flirt
- Un beau-parleur – someone who speaks to seduce you
- Un tombeur – a (very successful) seducer – often said of someone who has a lot of success with the ladies
- Aborder/accoster quelqu’un – to address someone in order to flirt
- Un Kéké – a seducer – young adult vocabulary – a seducer
- Un macho – a macho guy
- Une pétasse – a skank
I’ve written a whole article about saying “I love you in French” in many different ways, but also alternatives to dropping the L bomb, French love vocabulary and tips to avoid cultural mistakes.
3 – How to Compliment in French
Paying a compliment to someone is part of the flirting game.
Here are some nice compliments you could use: I’ll put them in the feminine – us girls, we don’t really need to pay guys compliments, do we? JUST KIDDING!!!
- Tu es radieuse ce soir – a smarter way to say you look beautiful
- Cette couleur te va à ravir – this color looks great on you
- Ton sourire est contagieux – your smile is contagious
- J’aime le son de ta voix – I like the sound of your voice
- Comme tu es… amusante, touchante, émouvante, cultivée, douée – you are so… fun, touching, moving, cultivated, gifted
- J’adore te regarder marcher – I love to see you walk… borderline if you ask me but a guy told that to me when I was 17… and obviously it made an impression on me!
By the way, mesdames, if you are interested, here is my (apparently controversial! – see all the comments) article about French women beauty secrets.
Now that you have the essential French flirting vocabulary, let’s see how to ask someone out on a date in French.
4 – How To Ask “Go Out With me” in French?
To say “would you like to go out with me”, we say:
- Tu veux sortir avec moi ?
Watch out though that “sortir” has the same double meaning as in English: it can mean to go out socially or romantically. The context will make the difference… or can lead to misunderstanding…
- Tu veux sortir avec nous – go out with “us”, so group of friends going out socially.
- Tu sors avec elle ? – Are you going out with her ? Probably talking about romance here…
Once you are dating, you may want to use a French love nickname with your French sweetie – Many more in my article with audio.
5 – What About Flirting and Dating in France ?
There are some very important differences between dating in France and dating in the US for example.
I wrote a whole article about dating in France – I suggest you read it should you intend to date someone French.
An important tip about dating in France is that dating tends to be exclusive – from the start. We usually don’t need to have this “let’s stop seeing other people” discussion that’s often featured in American sitcoms…
But I’m digressing. Read the article to know more!
6 – How to Ask Someone Out in French
If you want to be more specific when asking someone out in French, you could ask:
- Tu veux être ma petite-copine / mon petit-copain ?
Would you like to be my girlfriend/boyfriend?
But only young teens would use that line… Adults would use more standard pick-up lines – we’ll see some examples below.
The Local.fr released tips on how to seduce French women – where it’s appropriate to flirt in France etc… Check it out!
But first, let’s address a complicated question: how do you call your partner in French when you are an adult?
7 – How to Say Boyfriend / Girlfriend in French?
Even saying girlfriend or boyfriend is problematic in French!
- The typical word for a boyfriend in French is “un petit-ami/ un petit-copain”.
- The typical word for a girlfriend in French is “une petite-amie / une petite-copine.”
That’s fine when you are a teen, or when it’s a new and casual relation. However just as in English, the French wouldn’t use this to describe a long-lasting relationship.
When we are in a serious / long lasting relationship in France, we are more likely to call our love partner :
- Un ami, une amie (strong N liaison/gliding “Nami”) – a friend, or a boyfriend/girlfriend.
This is not specific however, but is the word grown-ups would use.
So how to know whether we’re talking romantic friend?
Most of the time, it’s the context. We often add a possessive adjective – mon amie(e).
So contrast these two options:
- Je te présente Pierre, un de mes amis – Let me introduce you to Pierre, one of my friends
- Je te présente mon ami Pierre – let me introduce you to my friend Pierre
It’s not set in stone, but the second way of introducing Pierre is likely to be the romantic partner.
The French sometime use the word “un compagnon / une compagne” for long-term adult relationships.
For homosexual relationships, we tend to use “mon/ma partenaire”, although “compagnon / compagne” is also common.
If you are engaged, it’s “mon fiancé, ma fiancée”.
And if you are married “mon mari” (husband – or sometimes “mon époux” for spouse) and “ma femme” (wife – pronounced “fam” – sometimes “mon épouse” for spouse). On this subject, you may enjoy this article I wrote about French weddings.
8 – What Does “Être Célibataire” Means in French?
“Être Célibataire” in French is not what you think!
“Être Célibataire” means to be single, not be in a relationship. “Être Célibataire” doesn’t mean to be celibate….
It’s also the marital status of someone who is not married. So if at a party, a French woman asks a guy:
- Et tu es célibataire ?
She may be flirting – or at least, fishing out for information!
9 – Typical French Pick-up Lines
T’as d’beaux yeux, tu sais
Ah… the pick-ups lines…
Of course we have some traditional ones, like the actor Jean Gabin saying “T’as d’beaux yeux, tu sais” (Tu as de beaux yeux, tu sais = you know you have gorgeous eyes) in the movie “Quai des Brumes”.
This line became a classic, and French people use this pick-up line in a humoristic kind of way – but still paying you a compliment of course.
Bonjour Belle Blonde
I have no idea where this one comes from. It means “hi pretty blond” but can be used with a brunette… it doesn’t matter!
It’s humorous as well, it is to be said with an exaggerated seducing look, kind of “hey gooooorgeous” or “how you’ doing?”… and is a smooth way to make fun of yourself and actually pay a compliment to “la belle”.
10 – Terrible French Pick Up Lines
I’m not a big fan of pick up line, hence the short list! Actually, according to me, most pick-up lines are terrible… Here is a list of famously bad ones!
- Pour toi bébé, je décrocherai la lune – for you baby, I’ll get the moon
- La beauté a ses limites, mais tu les a dépassées – beauty has limits, but you went over them
- J’aimerais être une de tes larmes pour naître dans tes yeux, vivre sur tes joues et mourir sur tes lèvres – I’d like to be one of your tears to be born in your eyes, live on your cheeks and die on your lips.
- Tes yeux sont comme des étoiles – your eyes are like stars…. pleeeease!
If you liked this article, I may also like:
- French Women Don’t Date – the French Dating System Explained
- The Many Ways of Saying I Love You in French
- All About French Kissing
- French love nicknames (with audio)
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