Difference Between Adieu and Au Revoir

Adieu vs Au Revoir

Au Revoir and Adieu are French words that are used to bid farewell. Both are commonly used to make it confusing for the students of French language to choose either of the two in a particular context. In a sense, both relate with Good Bye in English. However, there is also a word farewell in English that is closer in meaning to adieu. This article takes a closer look at the words adieu and Au Revoir to come up with their differences.

Au Revoir

Au Revoir is a French word that is used when leaving a place or a friend to convey bye or see you later kind of feelings. This is like saying until we meet again, and most commonly used by people of all age groups in all sorts of situations these days. You can use this word whether you are meeting the person in another 5 minutes or 5 weeks. In normal conversations, Au Revoir is used to bid farewell. Au Revoir has a hidden hope of meeting the person soon again.


Adieu is a word that is used to bid farewell, especially when the person is dying or leaving forever. There is an implication of not expecting to meet again behind the word adieu. You say adieu to bid farewell to a dying person as you know that you will not meet him again. If you have a neighbor who is going abroad as he is shifting, you use the word adieu to bid farewell when you are meeting him for the last time.

What is the difference between Adieu and Au Revoir?

• Both adieu and Au Revoir are used to bid farewell, but adieu is used when you are not expecting to see the person again as he is either dying or going away forever.

• Au Revoir is a casual word that is similar to goodbye or till we meet again in English.

• In fact, adieu is a word that is today seen only in drama and novels as people use Au Revoir in the daily lives to say goodbye to each other.

• There is an implicit hope of seeing or meeting soon in Au Revoir whereas people use adieu when they are sure they will not see the individual again.