French Introductions - Les Présentations

Learn how to introduce yourself and others in French

Introducing Yourself in French
Ann Cutting / Getty Images.

Article Edited by Camille Chevalier-Karfis

When you meet French speakers, you need to know how to introduce yourself and what to say when you are introduced. Here are some useful expressions related to French introductions - click the links to listen to each expression in French.

Introducing Yourself

First, a word of warning. For introduction, French uses the vers “se présenter”, not the verb “introduire” which means to introduce something INTO something else, to insert.

So it wont’ sound good if you said “I’d like to introduce my friend Paul into you…” So something to definitely be careful about.

   Je me présente.
   Let me introduce myself.

Using “s’appeler” is the common way to introducing oneself in French. Don’t think of it as “to name oneself” because it will only confuse you. Think of it in the context of introducing your name to someone and link the French words to that context instead of applying a literal translation.

   Je m'appelle...
   My name is...

I’d use “je suis Camille” with people who already know my name, like people who I already talked to on the phone or by mail but never met me in person. Otherwise, I’d use “je m’appelle Camille”.

   Je suis...
   I am...

Note that in French, nicknames ("un surnom") are much less common than in the US, but not totally unusual either. Often, a longer first name will be shorten: Caro for Caroline, Flo for Florence… 

   Mon prénom est...

   My (first) name is...

Introducing Others in French

Je vous présente... (formal and/or plural)
   Je te présente... (informal)
   I'd like to introduce...

   This is...

   Il s'appelle...
   His name is...

   Elle s'appelle...
   Her name is...

Meeting People in French

   Comment vous appelez-vous ? (formal and/or plural)
   Comment t'appelles-tu ? (informal)
   What is your name?

   Enchanté / Enchantée.
   It's nice to meet you.

And Now Let's Practice

Quiz on introductions

French Words to Watch out for

  •    Le prénom - first name, given name
  •    Le nom - last name, family name, surname
  •    Le surnom - nickname
  •    introduire - to insert. Don't use this French verb when talking about introducing one person to another - it's a false cognate. The correct verb when making introductions in French is présenter.

What about the moves?

Check out the moves French people make when introducing themselves and feel prepare to greet French people with my "learn French in Context" bilingual easy story about the French kissing hello (but never hugging...)

Helpful Lessons

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Your Citation
Lawless, Laura K. "French Introductions - Les Présentations." ThoughtCo, May. 4, 2016, Lawless, Laura K. (2016, May 4). French Introductions - Les Présentations. Retrieved from Lawless, Laura K. "French Introductions - Les Présentations." ThoughtCo. (accessed January 21, 2018).