Using Le Présent where English uses Present Tense (current actions, habits and situations)

Look at these sentences:

Tous les jours, je me lève à 6 heures.
Every day, I wake up at 6.

Les lions mangent de la viande.
Lions eat meat.

Le téléphone sonne.
The phone rings.


Notice that le Présent is used to refer to current actions, timeless facts and habitual actions. In these examples, it translates to the Present tense in English*.


*but be aware as this is not always the case! It can also imply Present Continuous or Immediate Future actions depending on context - see these other lessons:

Using Le Présent for immediate/near future actions

Using Le Présent for ongoing actions where English uses Present Continuous

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

Les lions mangent de la viande.
Lions eat meat.

Tous les jours, je me lève à 6 heures.
Every day, I wake up at 6.

Le téléphone sonne.
The phone rings.

Current actions

Je suis dans la douche
I am in the shower

Habitual actions

Je prends le train tous les matins
I take the train every morning

Timeless facts

La lune tourne autour de la Terre
The moon goes round the Earth



Kwiziq community member

3 March 2018

3 replies

Vendredi and Le Vendredi

Hi, I'm having a problem understanding why "Pierre is taking the train on Friday" is wrong. I see the correct answer is "Pierrs takes the train on Fridays", but the "explain this" is not really explaining it for me as the only difference is the "le" vendredi. Can you explain why please when you get a chance. Thanks a mil, Celine


Kwiziq community member

5 March 2018


Hi Celine,

in French, the article in front of a weekday signifies that this happens all days, not just the one. 

Samedi je joue aux cartes. -- Saturday I play cards. 

Le samedi je joue aux cartes. -- SaturdayS I play cards. 

-- Chris (not a native speaker). 


Kwiziq language super star

29 June 2018


Hi Céline,

The difference between: 

Pierre prend le train vendredi  = Pierre is taking the train on Friday

(meaning  this Friday)


Pierre prend le train le vendredi  = Pierre takes the train on Fridays  (meaning every Friday)

We use le + day of the week for something you do regularly on that day.

Hope this helps!


Kwiziq community member

10 November 2018


Hello! Would that be correct? (meaning every Friday)

Pierre prend le train les vendredis.

thank you!

Clever stuff underway!