How punctual are the French

Vive la France! This is typically France

France stands for lifestyle and nonchalance. For delicious food, wine and great cities like Paris. The French know how to enjoy life. “Le savoir vivre” - that's what they say. But what is this typically French way of life?

Peculiarities and behaviors in France

Kisses, kisses: How does that work with the greeting kiss, which is called “bise” in French? If you don't know each other, in France, as with us, you shake hands. But if you are more familiar, then you kiss. The most common are two kisses, starting with the right side. And then you can either breathe a kiss on the cheek or kiss very discreetly past left and right in the air. In some regions three or four kisses are also common - if you are unsure, just see how the others do it.

Among friends: French are sociable people who enjoy hanging out with friends and family. You drink an "aperitif", i.e. a glass of wine or a pastis, together, eat in large groups and exchange ideas. The multi-course meal tends to stretch over many hours. Lunch is also generous by our standards and is often taken in the restaurant. Even business lunches can drag on for hours. Everyone pays together, because having the waiter break up your bills is not typically French at all.

Punctuality is frowned upon: The French are not so strict about punctuality. Anyone invited to France or meeting friends in a restaurant should arrive there 10 to 20 minutes later. Everything else is considered pedantic.

Enjoy in French

French food: The French are real gourmets. Therefore, delicious food is definitely typical of France. The “cuisine francaise” is so famous that it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2010. But it doesn't always have to be the fine cuisine of a star chef, where you like to eat the French specialties frog legs and foie gras. World-famous cheeses such as Camembert, Brie or at least 1,000 other types also come from France. To go with it: the world-famous baguette. The white bread stick should not be missing from any meal. Caution: Under no circumstances should you cut off small pieces with a knife. The baguette is broken off by hand. The croissant is also typically French and is often eaten in conjunction with a café au lait for “petit déjeuner”, breakfast.

Cheese, wine and baguette - that is simply part of France

French wine: Drinking wine has a long tradition in France. And it's more than just a drink, it's almost a way of life. Although the French wine consumption has fallen, at around 54 liters per capita per year, it is still at the top worldwide. It's no wonder, after all, French wine is one of the best wines in the world in terms of quality. The varieties Bordeaux, Chardonnay and Sauvignon are known, for example. But of course also the fine champagne that is grown in the Champagne region and consumed on special occasions.

Street cafes and bistros: The French like to be away from home. Accordingly, they also like to drink their first coffee of the day in the bistro. Note: if you order a café in France, you get an espresso. If you want a coffee, you have to order café crème. And if you don't want to go without your piece of cake with your coffee, you'd better go to a patisserie. There are fresh pastries there.

Lifestyle and culture in France

With style and elegance: Many world-famous designers such as Christian Dior, Coco Chanel or Yves Saint Laurent come from France. And somehow the French women (and also the French) have got it to dress elegantly and stylishly. They often choose subtle colors and only use eye-catching jewelry sparingly. Shrill color combinations are definitely not an option and great importance is attached to good shoes.

The Beret, It used to be almost a French national symbol, but is hardly worn today. Only in his homeland, the Basque Country, can the béret basque still often be seen on men's heads. And that too Striped shirt, once the clothing of the Breton sailors and made famous by the designer Coco Chanel, has long since passed its most famous days.

Cinema is a French invention: At the end of the 19th century, the Lumière brothers succeeded in breathing movement into photographed images. The cinema was born. Even later, the French film, with directions such as the Nouvelle Vague or the Film Noir, set the style.

What else is typically French?

The Eiffel Tower: It is the symbol of Paris and every child really knows it. So there is almost nothing that could be more typical of France.


Driving in France: Pedestrians who want to cross a zebra crossing here may stand a little longer. Because we only stop when the pedestrian gives a hand signal. When driving a car, on the other hand, it is common to give signals. It is honked much more often than ours. In general, the French are by no means as car-loving as we Germans. Parking by ear is normal and a scratch in the car? What the hell! For nostalgics: One of the cars comes from France that some people still longingly follow. The Citroen DS, also known as the "duck". Although it has not been built for a long time, it still represents the French way of life.

The French love rugby: Even if you don't mean it, rugby is a very popular sport in France and is played by more than 200,000 French people.

The summer vacation: July and August are holiday season in France. Many French like to spend this in their own country - ideally somewhere by the sea, for example on the Cote d’Azur or on the Atlantic coast. Even such beautiful regions as Provence with its world-famous purple lavender fields are high on the popularity list. No matter where - an extended summer vacation has to be at least three weeks at a time.

You can also find more information about France and its regions in the blog.

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