Etiquette

  • Conversation Use the formal vous when speaking to anyone unknown or older than you; the informal tu is reserved for close friends, family and children.
  • Churches Dress modestly (cover shoulders).
  • Drinks Asking for une carafe d'eau (free jug of tap water) in restaurants is acceptable. Never end a meal with a cappuccino or cup of tea. Play French and order un café (espresso).
  • French kissing Exchange bisous (cheek-skimming kisses) – two is the norm in Bordeaux – with casual acquaintances and friends.