8 things you need to know about dating etiquette in France
PUBLISHED: 11:11 08 February 2017 | UPDATED: 11:11 08 February 2017
Looking for love in France? Then keep these dating rules close to your heart
The French tend to meet for the first time through social circles or friends. They rarely go on blind dates and prefer to get to know each other first.
The French dislike making a ‘date’ obviously romantic as it is all about courting, testing, and playful conversations. Rendez-vous are more laid-back, unlike the more formal English or American rules of dating, so don’t be surprised to be invited to a meet-up with a group of people or to receive a last-minute message such as ‘on va boire un verre?’ (‘shall we go for a drink?’) or an invitation to go for an afternoon walk or a catch-up with friends.
Turn up late
This is all about not appearing too eager, and the French, and more specifically those from the South of France, are notorious for being late. There is even a name for it – le quart d’heure de politesse! Make sure you wait a few minutes extra for your date to show up, just to be sure.
Don’t take non for an answer
If you have asked a French person to go out on a date and they have said no, all is not lost. The ‘non’ can be interpreted as a ‘maybe’, ‘convince me’ or ‘try harder’. You can message more, but don’t be too pushy, if the ‘no’ keeps cropping up, read the signs and leave them alone. Being clingy is not considered attractive.
Traditionally, the first kiss on the lips seals some unwritten agreement that you are starting a relationship and will begin to be exclusive.
The French don’t have ‘the talk’, rather they let the relationship evolve as both parties get to know each other in a romantic way. The relationship becomes serious once you meet the family. It is not unusual for the words ‘je t’aime’ to come quite quickly but this really depends on the individual.
Make sure you keep your phone turned on because, in between dates, the French like to keep in touch. You can expect a text message or call a day after the date itself.
Trying the silent treatment when you want to end a relationship or indicate that you are not interested does not work in France. Failing to respond can sometimes be taken as a playful flirt. Be clear and direct – the French are passionate people.