Ways to Say Thank You in French

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Written By Jessica Knight

Founder of Linguatics. Passionate multilinguist.

It is safe to say that the French take manners pretty seriously so learning to say “thank you” in French and when and where to say it is important if you want to appear polite and cultured.

Finding the appropriate level of expression is key for French people. There are certain situations where it would be deemed ba manners to be overly gratuitous with your thanks. 

So to make sure you don’t make any cultural faux pas we have put together a guide.

Here you’ll find some different ways to say “thank you” in French to take you beyond a simple “merci” and how to say you are welcome just as politely, to cover a multitude of scenarios.

All of the phrases for Thanks in French that we will teach you today are also acceptable in French Canadian, so if you are off to Quebec then you are also in luck!

Let’s begin! 

How to Say “Thank You” in French – An Overview

MerciThank you
Merci beaucoupThank you very much
Mille mercisA thousand thank yous
Un immense merciMany thanks
Merci pour toutThanks for everything
Je vous remercieThank you
Je te remercieThank you,
Merci, mon ami/eThank you my friend
Merci ma belle/ma grandeThanks beautiful/handsome
Dieu merciThank god
Merci por le repasThanks for the meal
Nous sommes heureux de faire affaire avec vousThank you for your business/custom
Je vous prie de recevoir l’expression de mes salutations I beg you to receive the expression of my best regards
Ci MerMerci
Non, merciNo, thank you

Ways to Say “Thank You” in French


Obviousy, we have to open with “Merci” the easiest to remember and most versatile to use. It is technically an informal word to use and we’ll show you the full phrase later.

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Although these days most people do not use the full formal form, you should still avoid “merci” for formal situations.

But if a friend ‘does a quick favor’, or you are shopping and want to thank a cashier, then “merci” should be your go-to!

Merci Beaucoup

Adding “beaucoup” as a quantifier into the mix takes the shortened informal phrase and makes it “Thank you very much”. It is a very common way to say thanks in French and can  be used for many situations.

Mille Mercis

Although this next one is very casual and won’t be heard too often, “Mille mercis” is an exaggerated way to show your gratitude.

The literal translation is “a thousand thank yous” and it equivalates to “Many thanks”. While you won’t hear it much you see it quite often online in the comment section.

It is used more frequently by younger demographics.

Un Immense Merci

An older version of the above is “un immense merci” which you can remember pretty well as our own word ‘immense’ shares the same roman root. It is a good way to say “Thank you so much” but it should be reservedly used, or the thanks that you are giving have lower value!

We tend to ‘over-thank’ but immense thankyous are only given where exceptional help has been given. 

Merci Pour Tout

If you have been helped a lot with something large, or have been shown great kindness, then “merci pour tout” might just be the phrase you need to show your gratitude. It means “Thank you for everything” in French. 

Je Vous Remercie

When a formal thank you is required, the full version of the phrase that “merci” comes from is “Je vous remercie”. 

Vous is the formal way to say “you”, if you are speaking to a stranger or want to show respect for authority then you should use “vous”. 

If you know them a little better as a conversational partner then scroll for the more informal version.

Je Te Remercie

Switching the formal word for “you” to the informal one will give you the phrase “Je te remercie”. 

Just make sure you are definitely on “te” terms with one another, if in doubt, use “vous” and listen for how your speaking partner addresses you. 

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If they consider you a friend instead of a stranger then you have the green light to get less formal!

It is a very common way to say thank you to a friend and shows there is some care and meaning behind it rather than a quick slap-dash “merci”.

Merci, Mon Ami/e

Transitioning from “vous” to “te” terms is actually a big deal, to be called a friend by the French bears a lot more weight than it does in America for example!

The French have two (gendered) words for French:

  • Ami – The male version of “friend”
  • Amie – The female version of “friend”

The roots of the word “amicus” is shared by other Latin languages such as the Spanish word “amigo” tie into the taking of hands. When you are called a friend (ami), it is for life so don’t throw the word around!

Merci, Ma Belle/Ma Grande

Another phrase that you might want to use with close friends, but need to be conscious of boundaries with is “merci ma belle” or “merci, ma grande”. 

You can use it with kids casually, but never with strangers or in a formal situation. It means “thankyou beautiful” or “thanks handsome”!

Dieu Merci

“Dieu merci” means “Thank God!” in French, if you are saved from a pretty dire situation then it wouldn’t be considered a stretch too far among friends and family to use this rather drastic expression.

It may be considered blasphemous if you’re in the company of someone devout.

But if you have been in a tight jam and feel like thanking your lucky stars then “Dieu merci” might be the French thankyou that the situation calls for. 

Merci Pour Le Repas

This one is a little more specific, it means “Thank you for the meal”, it is a great way to personally thank the Chef if he visits your table, which they quite often do in restaurants of high repute.

You can take it one step further with an adjective to describe the meal itself, such as;

“Merci pour le repas succulent.”(Thanks for the succulent meal).

Nous Sommes Heureux de Faire Affaire Avec Vous

So we have given you a few that would be inappropriate in a business situation, but what could you use that would be considered professional?

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Nous sommes heureux de faire affaire avec vous means “we are happy to do business with you” and can be used in the same way we might say “thanks for your custom” or “thank you for your business”.

If you are sealing an important deal you don’t want to see anything informal. Although this one is a bit of a mouthful for a beginner to master and say aloud you can make a note of it and use it to sign off any written professional business communications.

Je Vous Prie de Recevoir L’expression de Mes Salutations 

Another great way to sign offa a formal letter is “Je vous prie de recevoir l’expression de mes salutations”. Again it is a long sentence, and pretty decorative! It means something like

“I beg you to receive the expression of my best regards.” Very fancy, very French!


On the subject of written messages, you might find your friends texting “Thank you” in French in a shortened form much as we would text quick “thx” or “thank u” ! In French the equivalent is Mci.

Ci Mer

Another bit of slang you might want to have up your sleeve to mix in with the locals is the French slang Ci Mer.

The phrase comes from the French Pig Latin known as Verlan, however, unlike English Pig Latin, it isn’t outdated or out of use. 

By switching the word “merci” syllables, you get “ci Mer”. It’s still considered pretty hip!

Non, Merci

Sometimes you might need to negate politely, a simple “non, merci” will do the trick for most situations.

Responding To Thanks; “You’re Welcome” in French

If somebody thanks you, you will need to say you’re welcome! In french you have two correct ways to do that with regards to conjugating the “you” in question like you saw with the two different versions of thankyou above.

Je Vous En Prie

“Je vous en prie” Is the formal way to say “You’re welcome” in French to a stranger or someone outside of your social circle such as a colleague in a professional setting.

Je T’en Prie

If you know the person all too well, then you are able to switch to the “te” and use “ je t’en prie” to “You’re welcome” in French to a friend or family member.

Other ways to say, “you’re welcome” in French:

As with English you aren’t limited to you’re welcome as a response, there are many other phrases but we’ll leave you with a few informal suggestions before we wrap up.

  • “C’est rien du tout.” (It is nothing.)
  • “Avec plaisir!” (With pleasure!)
  • “Pas de problème.” (No problem.)

Thank You in French – Final Thoughts

Most cultures have a concept of gratitude, for some, it is intrinsically built into their language and mannerisms in everyday lives for others you must learn the etiquette. 

For the French, being polite and saying thanks is crucial to being considered cultured. 

If you want to make friends and jump the “vous” to “te” hurdle then you are going to need to show your gratitude appropriately.

Fingers crossed we’ve given you all the info you need to do precisely that! Now you know how to say thank you in French regardless of the situation and how to say you’re welcome as well, you’ll be making friends in no time!

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