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Swiss French Vs. French French

Coucou tout le monde!

So I'm a Brit living in the french speaking region of Switzerland, and I thought I would post some of the differences between french spoken in France vs Switzerland.

As an English person I would compare it to the differences between British English vs American English... Odd differences in vocabulary and occasionally in grammar but perfectly easy to understand one another!

Oh and really sorry for lack of accents.. I have a uk keyboard...

I tried putting these into nice neat columns of English, France and Switzerland but when I post it gets all jumbled up, so With each word I will post first in French French and then in Swiss French...

Breakfast / Petit-dejeuner / Dejeuner

Lunch / Dejeuner / Diner

Dinner or Supper / Diner / Super

Chewing gum / Chewing gum / Chiquelette

Towel / Serviette / Linge

Special Offer / Promotion / Action

College(UK) or High-school / Lycee / College

Cashpoint or ATM /Guichet /Bancomat

Mess /Desordre / Chenis

And my personal favourites...

Seventy / Soixante-dix / Septante

Eighty / Quatre-vignts / Huitante

Ninety / Quatre-vignts-dix / Nonante

A lot of languages use different variations of the word "ciao" in Italian meaning hello/goodbye. Here in Switzerland when you want to say goodbye to someone you know well you can say "ciao" or if you want to be really Swiss "Tcho!" which is used by both the french speakers and the German speakers (I am not sure about Italian dialect or Romansch).

There are obviously many more differences but these are just a few to get you started. Hope you enjoyed it.. TCHO BONNE!!

November 17, 2015



Cool! I didn't realize that there are different variations of french.


Yes, it's just like English! For example, in America one would say "I went to the store to buy some French fries and I put them in my trunk", in Britain, "I went to the shop to buy some chips and I put them in my boot", then here in Ireland, "*I went to the chipper to get a yoke o' chips and I put them in me boot".


Definitely. I'm a Canadian. I have noticed things in Duo's French course that are different in Quebec. I used to work on a French team at my job. We had an employee who was born in the Congo and he is a francophone, but didn't understand some of the Quebec slang.


you can use accents on your ënglish"keyboard, google and youtube instructions, what you're looking for is "international with dead keys"


Oh okay thanks, I'll check it out!


I wish you could add the sound of these!


Yeah it's a shame! I managed to find a video on youtube which mentions some of the above plus others which I had forgotten! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coLyx5AI4Hg


Whoah! So interesting, thanks for sharing you experince in Switerland! In my opion ''Huitante, septante and notante'' are better to say instead of ''Quatre-vingts, etc. ''


Thanks :D Yeah so much more logical! Only problem is I'm so used to it whenever I go to France and the cashiers like that will be un euro quatre-vingts-quinze my brain malfunctions for about 10 seconds!!


You might be interrested by this post : Duolingo ~ 「 Formatting Codes 」 https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11646765


Thanks for this - super helpful! It was my first ever post so I was pretty clueless about all of the formatting ect XD


looks so interesting.... eager to learn more like this :)


This is super fascinating. I'm a Canadian. Quebec French is slightly different than French from France. One of the biggest differences is that Qubec is more protective of their language than France is, so France has more English loan words.

Le weekend is "la fin de semaine" Un email is "un courriel"

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