Signing off on an email

Can somebody suggest a range of email sign-offs, what used to be called a complimentary closing when we wrote or typed letters?

If I’m writing an email to a business or to a total stranger in France, I don’t bother with any closing other than my name. With French friends, I use just my first name.

But where I stumble is signing off in a friendly way to the people we’ve met or stayed with or somehow know and there’s mutual liking. I want to express warmth but not inappropriately.

I’ve received amicalement, mille amities, bisous, on vous embrasse avec toute notre amitié, toutes nos amitiés, and probably others I’ve forgotten. I often use amicalement but it may not be friendly enough.

Are there a few closings I can use for people we’re fond of that’s not too gushy? Something that’s warmer than a formal closing but falls short of expressing undying love.

I sign this post
“Veuillez recevoir, Monsieur/Madame, mes salutations distinguées.”

I know you can do better than that one!

I tend to use Cordialement, or occasionally Bien cordialement if I am feeling generous. It will be interesting to hear other replies.


I use Cordialement or Amicalement where I would use Regards in English.

My bank gets the full Veuillez… routine

I’ve also noticed recently “Bonne journée à vous” or occasionally “Belle journée à vous” as last sentence seems to be the same as “Good day to you” could mean. ie Politely rude if you’ve just corrected someone or are standing your ground on something.

Same…cordialement and bien cordialement for formal stuff, but wouldn’t use for quasi-dfriend.

On vous embrasse (just by itself) is not actually not that gushy.


Me too

I did some work for a French company a couple of years back and cordialement was the standard finish, so it’s what I’ve adopted as standard for everyone except specifically friends.


Cordialement everytime.

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Another vote for cordialement

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“Cordialement” for business, “bises” for friends.

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to someone we’ve met in a friendly fashion … and look forward to meeting again…
à la prochaine

In the emails I have received, “cordialement” and “bien à vous” seem to be what is used for business ones - small businesses that is, rather than the full “veuillez accepter” etc.

Friendly ones where we are e.g. both members of the same choir seem to be more often “je vous embrasse” although some of the more reserved people seem just to use “bon weekend” or whatever.

What people who are actually friends use I don’t know as I haven’t received many emails from them - they tend to ring up!

I use cordialement as its a direct translation of best regards which I use when emailing UK addressees.

Only it isn’t :grin:.
But you’d use it as just as you would use that English expression :slightly_smiling_face:.

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Thanks, I got the translation from google translate when I first had to open bank accounts etc when I first arrived.

So “Je vous embrasse” is low key? Glad to hear it. I got an email signing off “Je vous embrasse” from a man I know only through garden visits and it seemed a bit much, even though I knew he was just being friendly.

Still, I’m not comfortable using it myself.

Just to check: “amicalement” is only lukewarm, right? I’m looking for something warmer than that.

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I view amicalement as distinctly lukewarm!!

well, I suppose different folk use things differently…
I’ve taken a wander down the emails I get… and can’t see anything amiss with the various “endings”…
I tend to respond in the same vein as I receive… and amicalement has been used to me by folk who are polite and friendly… certainly face to face we are not “lukewarm” :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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Around this time last year, I was doing contract work for a mid-sized company in Dijon, Bien à toi and Bien à vous were used more than Cordialement and Bien cordialement. They were often abbreviated, Bàt, Bàv and Cdt.

perhaps the ending is not really as important as the content… ??? :wink:

Carti, this raises another issue: vous or tu? We have good friends we don’t tutoyer with. Maybe each of us is waiting for the other to initiate it. In our case, our French is at the level where we can usually come out with the verb form for the second person plural, but not the second person singular. That’s our excuse.

Anyway, let’s not open that particular can of worms. Let’s stick to friendly closings. These are French friends and we don’t want to be lukewarm if we can do better.