French Lesson on Deadlines

French Lesson on Deadlines

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French Lesson on Deadlines is chapter 20 of this Free French Lesson Series – it can be combined with the Hands Free Business french audiobook for even faster learning here

Deadlines are important to know and communicating them are too! here you can learn just that.

  1. “the closing date”: « la date limite »

Example sentence in French Lesson on Deadlines

“You did not meet the deadline, that’s unacceptable.”

« Vous n’avez pas respecté la deadline, c’est inacceptable. »  


  • “the deadline”: « la deadline »

Another example of a borrowed word. Alternative : la date limite.

  • “to meet the deadline”: « respecter la deadline »

Another example of a Latin-derived transparent word. The English may use “to respect the deadline”, but it’s less common.

  • “unacceptable”: « inacceptable »

Be careful with prefixes (the beginning of words) [Note: the audio mentions “affixes”, which include both prefixes and suffixes]. They can be different from English to French.

In this case, “UN-acceptable” becomes « IN-acceptable ».

There are many other words like this, for example “unbearable”: « insupportable ».

But sometimes it’s the same affix, e.g. “inefficient”: « inefficace ».

Also keep in mind the T-liaison when I pronounce « c’est-inacceptable ». That’s because the first word ends with a “T” and the second word begins with a vowel. So, I need to make the T-liaison very clear: « c’est-inacceptable ».

Quick tip: Slang for “deadline”

You’ve got a slang word for “deadline” which is « dernier carat ». This is the last date, the last day, the last opportunity to do something.

Origin: back in the times, 24 carats was perfection for a jewel. It was the limit; hence the deadline. 

So, you will say for example « mardi, c’est le dernier carat », meaning “Tuesday is the closing date/the deadline”. 

Quick tip 2: Formality

I said “you did not meet the deadline”: « vous n’avez pas respecté la deadline ».

As you know, there are two levels of formality in French when addressing someone directly:

« tu », the second person, and « vous », the fifth person.

« tu » is for colleagues, friends and « vous » for your boss or the elders usually.

But this depends on the company you work in. For example, millenials and young bosses or young companies like Facebook will use « tu » all the time. But in a traditional company, a big multinational bank where you wear a suit and tie, you will address everyone with « vous ».

Thank you for reading this free French lesson for business – please have alook through some other lessons HERE