Tuesday, July 23, 2019
News, analysis and commentary by UBC Journalism students


So you want to learn French?

You walk by this scene, a lively cafe in Montorgueil-St Denis, in Paris, dog-eared Berlitz French phrase book in-hand. Now…

By Daniel Hallen , in La Vie Vancouver , on March 23, 2010

A scene at a Paris cafe in Montorgueil-Saint Denis, photo by flickr user Mecredi

You walk by this scene, a lively cafe in Montorgueil-St Denis, in Paris, dog-eared Berlitz French phrase book in-hand.

Now what?

You could haltingly order a cup of coffee, ask the time, or ask the way to the Post office. All useful skills, certainly.

But, wouldn’t it be great to pull up a chair next to the chic woman in polkadots and dangly earrings, and share a conversation and a glass of merlot?  Sure, there’s a chance she speaks English.  Why don’t you try?

Afraid she might not be so friendly if you drone on in…<gasp> anglais?

That would not be, as they say, “Super cool.”

Don’t fret!  You can change this scenario – it is within your power.

You could join a in Vancouver, or eat at a French restaurant.  All great ideas, but will they get the job done?  That depends on your existing level of comfort in French.

Or, you could enroll in one of the many French classes offered throughout the city.  You might think that it would be difficult to find classes in French in a city where Cantonese and Mandarin are more commonly heard on the street, but there are actually lots of avenues down which you can pursue that passion.

Let’s assume you want to take a beginner class – you’ve got some options…

– 6161 Cambie St.

– offers 2-hour classes either twice per week or once per week, depending on your schedule.  Average price for one class is $25.

– 1551 W 7th Ave.

– offers one 2-hour class per week, average price per class is $18, cheaper if you become a member of the cultural center.  A free placement test is required to determine your starting level.

– 1892 W Broadway

– offers one 2-hour class per week, on Thursdays, the average price for each class is $29.  Private lessons are also available for $40 per session, for really intensive frenchification.

also offers classes both at the main campus and the Robson Square campus.  They vary in price.

A beginner class, offered at the main campus, is offered each Thursday for 2-hours at a time; it costs an average of $32 per class!

Find the one closest to you below:

Alliance Française de Vancouver


View in a larger map