French Language Blog

Joyeux Anniversaire To You – French Birthdays Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 in Culture

Many people in ma famille celebrate their anniversaire (birthday) in juin (June), including me! Aujourd’hui (today) we’re going to take a look at how to wish someone a Happy Birthday.

There are a two ways to say Happy Birthday in French:

Joyeux anniversaire !
Bon anniversaire !

Très souvent (very often) a short phrase is attached:

Passe une très bonne journée !  Have a very good day!
Passe une excellente journée ! Have an excellent day!

Of course, no anniversaire is complete with singing Joyeux Annivesaire (Happy Birthday to You) before on souffle les bougies de son gâteau d’anniversaire (you blow out the candles on your birthday cake). It’s an easy song and you should try singing it the next time someone celebrates their anniversaire! Just fill in the blanks with the name of the person celebrating their anniversaire.

Joyeux anniversaire,
Joyeux anniversaire,
Joyeux anniversaire _________ ,
Joyeux anniversaire.

Cependant (however), le français is a global language, and au Canada there is a slightly different expression used to wish people joyeux anniversaire:

Bonne fête!

And with this slightly different expression comes a slightly different song, Bonne fête à toi:

Bonne fête _________,
Bonne fête_________,
Bonne fête, bonne fête,
Bonne fête _________.

I wish any other June babies a joyeux anniversaire! If you want to practice your French, try wishing me a joyeux anniversaire in the comments!

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About the Author: John Bauer

John Bauer is an enthusiast for all things language and travel. He currently lives in France where he's doing his Master's. John came to France four years ago knowing nothing about the language or the country, but through all the mistakes over the years, he's started figuring things out.


  1. Joseph T. Madawela:

    joyeux anniversaire et Merci Beaucoup pour le blog

  2. Alma:

    So funny!
    Yesterday was also my birthday! 😀

    • John Bauer:

      @Alma C’est drôle ! I hope you had a great birthday yesterday!

  3. Lacygnette:

    Bon anniversaire. J’ai aussi un anniversaire en Juin. Alors, joyeux anniversaire a moi.

  4. Basil:

    Joyeux Annioversaire et bonne Journee!

  5. Nikki:

    Joyeux anniversaire. Passe un bonne journée. Ma famille et moi, nous avons fêter mon anniversaire hier.