Aller (to go)

Today, a lesson for beginners (A1): the verb Aller -to go.

Je vais à Bressuire (photo © Paul Howe)

For audio, click here:

In French, "aller" is one of the most commonly used verb. It means, of course "to go", but it is also used to express other very important things.

Its conjugation in the present tense is:
Je vais
Tu vas
Il /elle/on va
Nous allons
Vous allez
Ils/Elles vont

Je vais au théâtre (I go to the theater / I am going to the theater) 
Vous allez en Espagne (You go to Spain / You are going to Spain)
Ils vont à San Francisco (They go to SF / they are going to SF)

"Aller" is also used when talking about health:
"How are you?",  "How are you doing?",  "How is it going?",  "I am well, thank you", etc...
In French, all these sentences require the verb ALLER.
You don't say "How ARE you?", but "How do you GO?" (How is it going?)
You don't say "I AM well", you say "I GO well"

Je vais bien (I "go" well / I am "going" well)
You might have heard: "Ça va ?". It is widely used. It translates literally as "It goes?"and means "How is it going?"
And the answer? Very simple: "Ça va." ("It goes / It's going")

Places to go:
- Countries: en France (In/to France), aux Etats-Unis (In/to the United States), en Italie (in/to Italy)
- Cities: à Paris, à New York, à Bressuire*
- Places: au cinéma, au théâtre, à la banque (to the movies, the theater, the bank)

Other :
Les vacances (vacations)
Avec (with)
Ce soir (tonight)
Comment ? (How?)
Est-ce que vous...? (Do you...?)
Bien (well)

Exercice de conjugaison :
(practice the conjugation of Aller with this exercise)
Click here for Audio:

Je en France pour les vacances.

Elle aux États-Unis.

Tu en Italie avec Annabelle.

On au cinéma ce soir.

Comment ça ?

Est-ce que vous bien ?

Nous à la banque.

Ils à Paris.

Il à New York.

Elles à Bressuire ensemble.


For solution and correction, click here.
A bientôt !

* Bressuire: A small town South of the Loire Valley.

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