4 Ways to Tell Time in French
Learning to tell time in French is an essential skill to communicate effectively and navigate daily life in France. Whether you’re traveling, living, or working in France, understanding the different ways to tell time will make your experience smoother and more enjoyable. Here are four ways to tell time in French:
1. Les heures (Hours)
In French, telling the time is based on utilizing the 24-hour clock system. For example, you would say “Il est quatorze heures” (It is 14:00) for 2:00 PM. To ask for the time, you can say “Quelle heure est-il ?” (What time is it?).
When expressing time in French, follow this template:
– Il est + [number] + heures
– Il est neuf heures (It is 9:00)
– Il est vingt et une heures (It is 21:00)
2. Les minutes (Minutes)
To indicate minutes, add “et” after the hour and then state the number of minutes.
– Il est + [hour] + heures + et + [number] + minutes
– Il est dix heures et quinze minutes (It is 10:15)
– Il est seize heures et quarante-cinq minutes (It is 16:45)
3. Le quart d’heure et la demie (Quarter and Half Hours)
In French, people often express quarter hours as “et quart” (and a quarter) and half hours as “et demie” (and a half).
– Il est + [hour] + heures + et quart/demie
– Il est deux heures et quart (It is 2:15)
– Il est sept heures et demie (It is 7:30)
4. Moins le quart (Quarter to)
When the time is a quarter to the next hour, you can use “moins le quart” instead of stating the exact minutes.
– Il est + [next hour] + heures + moins le quart
– Il est trois heures moins le quart (It is 2:45)
– Il est onze heures moins le quart (It is 10:45)
In conclusion, there are four main ways to tell time in French: by hours, minutes, quarter and half hours, and quarter to. Understanding and utilizing these four methods will empower you to communicate more efficiently and accurately while navigating life in France. Bonne chance!