Ça va - Informal How Are You in French

ça va - the informal how are you In French
Maskot / Getty Images Prestige.

Now that we have studied the formal ways of saying "how are you" in French, let's look at the informal ways.

Ça va - How are you / how is it going? The Magical French word!

 "Ça va" (pronounced sa va, since the cedilla makes the C pronounced as an S) is truly the magical word of the French language. Why? Because it never changes.

You can use "ça va" to ask "how are you" to one person:

Ça va Camille ?
Oui, ça va bien, merci. Et toi ?

Whether you are using "tu" or "vous" doesn't matter:

Ça va madame Chevalier ?
Oui, ça va bien, merci. Et vous ?

You can use "ça va" to ask "how are you" to several people:

Ça va bien vous deux ? (How are you both?)
Ça va, ça va, merci. Et toi ? (Fine, fine, and you?)

You can even use "ça va" to talk about other people:

Et vos enfants, ça va ? (and your kids, are they OK?)
Oui, ça va bien, merci.

Not just people, you can use "ça va" for everything really!

Votre travail, ça va ? (how is your work?)
La santé de votre mère, ça va ? (how is your mother's health?)

How cool is that ???

Ça va - Informal but very common French for "how are you"

Granted, "ça va" is not the most formal French. But it's so practical that it's been used a lot in French lately, and has really made its way in almost all situations: among friends and family, of course, but also at the office, with acquaintances... It's only in the most formal of situations that it may not be appropriate.

I wouldn't say to the Queen of England "bonjour Votre Majesté, ça va ?"... 

Ok, now that we've seen how to say "how are you" in formal French, and learned about "ça va", let's see how you answer "how are you" subtlely in French.

I post exclusive mini lessons, tips, pictures and more daily on my Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest pages - so press the links below - talk to you there!

https://www.facebook.com/frenchtoday

https://twitter.com/frenchToday

https://www.pinterest.com/frenchtoday/

https://www.instagram.com/realfrenchtoday/

Format
mla apa chicago
Your Citation
Chevalier-Karfis, Camille. "Ça va - Informal How Are You in French." ThoughtCo, Sep. 23, 2016, thoughtco.com/how-are-you-in-french-1368096. Chevalier-Karfis, Camille. (2016, September 23). Ça va - Informal How Are You in French. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/how-are-you-in-french-1368096 Chevalier-Karfis, Camille. "Ça va - Informal How Are You in French." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/how-are-you-in-french-1368096 (accessed January 21, 2018).