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French Culture – Ride Sharing Posted by on Feb 4, 2020 in Business, Culture, Vocabulary

We’ve talked before about all the different ways to get around when in France. Whether you’re a tourist exploring the city, a commuter on your daily commute, or un pilote de course (a race car driver) there are always ways to get where you’re going. That was easier said than done, of course, during the recent grêves 1Which, while they have fluctuated, continue to cause challenges for des usagers / commuters across France (strikes) in France … during which I learned a new term!

Le covoiturage

Le covoiturage is a bit like carpooling, a bit like ride-sharing, and all the rage for getting where you want to go in France without your own car … or for helping to defray the costs of your own trips by sharing the ride with another (or plusieursmany) rider(s).

The most famous company dedicated to le covoiturage is called BlaBlaCar. BlaBlaCar matches up des conducteurs (drivers) with des passagers (passengers) for a shared drive across town or across the country.

The company’s name comes from a common French expression for conversation/talking … or empty chatter. In English, we might say yadda yadda yadda. When choosing a route, drivers and passengers could specify a ride from a driver plus bavard ou moins bavard (more chatty or less chatty) depending on the level of engagement you wanted.

Récemment2in 2018 (Recently) BlaBlaCar expanded their services with the acquisition of a bus company. Now riders can find shared rides with private drivers or access the many bus routes available to get to their destination.

Et pour finir …

Here’s a little throwback to last week when we talked about the different ways to express causality in French. It was actually hearing this song by the Corsican singer-songwriter Saint André that got me thinking about the differences between parce que and puisque.

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About the Author: Tim Hildreth

Lise: Maybe not always. Paris has ways of making people forget. / Jerry: Paris? No, not this city. It's too real and too beautiful. It never lets you forget anything. It reaches in and opens you wide, and you stay that way. / An American in Paris


  1. Pat:

    plus barard ou moins bavard – is that meant to be different or is that typo?

    • Tim Hildreth:

      @Pat Pat, Thanks for your sharp eyes! That was a typo on my part … BlaBlaCar rides can be with drivers who are plus bavard or moins bavard. 😉

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