The first time I met my wife’s colleagues, I made a fool of myself.
I greeted them, told them my name and they answered: “nice to meet you”.
“Yes”, I answered.
I didn’t want to answer “yes” of course. What a terrible answer!
I just didn’t know the proper way to answer in German (I was living in Berlin back then).
And I bet you may not know how to answer “nice to meet you” in French.
After showing you how to greet people in French a few months ago, I am now going to show you how to say “nice to meet you” in French and help you understand all the nuances so you make a good first impression.
Enchanté(e): the everyday “nice to meet you”
Some call it old-fashioned.
Some say it sounds populaire (working class).
Some say this word is an aberration and shouldn’t exist because it literally means “enchanted” as if the person you had just met was so amazing you were under a spell.
Despite all this hostility, enchanté is a word you will hear a lot and remains the most common way to say nice to meet you in French.
People use it when they meet people for the first time and using it is perfectly acceptable in most informal situations (including a laidback work environment);
Ravi(e)de faire votre connaissance: the formal nice to meet you
You can use both phrases with your boss, colleagues and in situations when you feel that enchanté may be inappropriate.
In case of doubt, it’s always safer to use ravi(e) de faire votre connaissance” instead of enchanté.
On m’a tellement parlé de vous: the compliment
Feel like complimenting someone you already heard about?
Use On m’a tellement parlé de vous, l heard so much about you.
The person will then ask you En bien j’espère ? You head good things about me, right?
Bien sûr, of course! That’s at least what you answer if you want to make a friend :).
C’était un plaisir de: The nice conclusion
The phrases you discovered above are only used when you meet someone and you can’t use them to say “it was nice to meet you”.
If you had a wonderful time and would like the person you spent time with to know it, simply pick one of the following phrases:
- C’était un plaisir de vous rencontrer (formal it was a pleasure to meet you)
- C’était un plaisir de te rencontrer (informal it was a pleasure to meet you)
- C’était un plaisir de faire votre connaissance (another formal it was a pleasure to meet you
- C’était un plaisir de parler avec toi (informal it was a pleasure talking to you)
Voilà ! You now know how to say nice to meet you in French! Pick a phrase and use it next time you meet someone new!