Traditionally, breakfast consists of bread, croissants, pain au chocolat, or brioche, a sweet French bread. They may also have cereal, eggs, ham, or cheese. It is common for them to drink orange juice, coffee, or hot chocolate from a bowl rather than a cup or mug.


The main thing you’ll notice about lunch in France is that it’s a relaxed and enjoyable affair. Unlike the British who eat a quick sandwich or grab a bite at their desk, the French stop everything and savor their food. Lunch can take up to two hours and many people eat with their families after work. Several courses will be served, including bread and cheese, and wine will usually accompany them. A Sunday lunch is even more special, as families gather in large groups to eat, chat, and enjoy each other’s company.


A typical French dinner consists of three courses, often accompanied by excellent local wine. In French restaurants, you will notice that people eat much later than in other countries. Even families with children start eating around 7.30 pm, with most people eating later, around 8 or 9 pm. Similarly to lunch, dinner is relaxed and nobody is rushed. Restaurants do not expect you to eat quickly, they expect you to enjoy your meal and take your time.

Nights Out and Drinking

In France, it is customary to drink wine with meals. French people, however, have a very different attitude toward alcohol than British people, and they rarely drink excessively. French people usually start their night out with a meal and a few glasses of wine. It will take a few hours, after which they might go out and stay the night. Most French towns have bars, nightclubs, and dancing clubs, but they don’t really get busy until one or two in the morning, and they stay open until 6 or 7 in the morning.