Saying No in French

Two Men and Woman Talking Around Table

Gary Burchell / Taxi / Getty Images

Choose how you say no in French with care because the differences between expressions are nuanced. Here's how to say the equivalents of "no," "not a chance," "I don't think so," "down with," and more.

The Many Faces of Non in French

non > no
This is the basic, standard French word for "no."

Non, je n'aime pas skier. > No, I don't like to ski.

ah non / oh non > oh no
Ah non and oh non express disappointment, as in "oh no!" or "darn it!"

Ah non! Ça ne marche pas! > Oh no! It doesn't work!

non à… > no to...
Non à is followed by a noun to mean "(say) no to" or "down with," especially in protests and demonstrations:

Non au CPE! > No to the First Job Contract!

Other Synonyms for Non 

  •  absolument pas > absolutely not
  •  au contraire > on the contrary
  •  aucun (problème, argent, etc.) > no (problem, money, etc)
  •  bien sûr que non > of course not
  •  certainement pas > certainly not
  •  des clous! (familiar) > no way!
  •  du tout > not at all

Expressions With Non

  •  je crois que non > I don't think so
  •  je ne dis pas non > I wouldn't say no
  •  mais non > of course not
  •  moi non > not me, I don't
  •  n'est-ce pas? > no? right? isn't it?
  •  niet! (familiar) > no way!
  •  non merci - no thank you
  •  non et non! > absolutely not!
  •  non plus > not (that) either
  •  non que + subjunctive > not that …
  •  ... ou non? > … (are/will/do you + verb) or not?
  •  pas de (problème, temps, pain, etc) > no (problem, time, bread, etc.)
  •  pas du tout > not at all
  •  pas question! (familiar) > no way! not a chance!
  •  pas tout à fait > not exactly, not quite
  •  que non! > absolutely not!