Les fleurs

How to say the right thing on special occasions

Félicitations pour votre mariage
Bonne chance !
Je vous souhaite un joyeux anniversaire

Just as in English, French short set phrases are used to congratulate or encourage someone:

Bon anniversaire !
Happy birthday!
Bonne chance !
Good luck!
Joyeux Noël !
Merry Christmas!

If the occasion calls for a more formal greeting, begin with je vous souhaite ... (I wish you ...). Souhaite is from the regular verb souhaiter.

Je vous souhaite beaucoup de succès
I wish you lots of success

For particularly solemn occasions like funerals, there's an even more formal way to begin a written message: Veuillez. It really means 'please' and is actually the imperative form of the verb vouloir.

Veuillez accepter toutes mes condoléances.
Please accept my sincere condolences
Je pense à toi/ à vous en ce moment difficile.
I'm thinking of you at this difficult time.
Veuillez bien recevoir l'expression de mes sentiments distingués.
Yours faithfully.

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