Faire les courses vs faire les magasins

Look at these examples:

Ma mère a fait les courses samedi matin.
My mum went food shopping on Saturday morning

Elodie a fait du shopping avec sa mère. / Elodie a fait les magasins avec sa mère.
Elodie went shopping with her mum.

In French, you have more than one way to say "to go shopping", depending on the context:

"Faire les courses" 

This expression refers exclusively to food and utilities shopping, like going to the supermarket.
Basically, any "not leisure" shopping!

 

"Faire les magasins/Faire du shopping" 

These expressions both refer to the pleasure side of shopping, such as clothes, entertainment shopping. "Faire du shopping" is more commonly used in speech.

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

faire les courses


Je ne fais jamais les courses
I never go food shopping


Ma mère a fait les courses samedi matin.
My mum went food shopping on Saturday morning


faire les magasins / faire du shopping


Elodie a fait du shopping avec sa mère. / Elodie a fait les magasins avec sa mère.
Elodie went shopping with her mum.


J'adore faire les magasins! / J'adore faire du shopping!
I love to go shopping!


Avec mes copines, on va faire du shopping ce weekend.
With my girlfriends, we're going shopping this weekend.


Q&A

steven

Kwiziq community member

24 May 2018

1 reply

Faire les magasins

Can someone explain why it's faire DU shopping and faires LES magasins? Why is it not consistent and faire des magasins?

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

30 May 2018

30/05/18

Hi Steven,


Strictly speaking 'faire les courses' and 'faire les magasins' is to go shopping, the first one normally relating to food and essentials and the second one more for department stores and boutiques.


'Faire du shopping' is an addition to our vocabulary and to me means to go to the shops, not necessarily with the intention of buying. There is another expression meaning the same thing 'faire du lèche-vitrine' (to go window-shopping) which uses 'du' too. Maybe that's the reason?


Hope this helps!

DeAnna

Kwiziq community member

6 May 2018

1 reply

Faire les course v. Faire des courses

I learned that the difference here is:

faire les courses = grocery shopping

faire des courses = running errands (still not leisure shopping but includes things like pharmacy, dry cleaning, dog to groomer etc.j

Is this correct?

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

7 May 2018

7/05/18

Hi D,


'Faire les courses' is to go shopping, usually for grocery but not exclusively it will be in the shops you find on the high street. You would use 'faire des courses' if you had some shopping to do.


e.g. "Demain, je fais les courses et on part en weekend ..."


"J'ai des (quelques) courses à faire ce matin. Je dois passer au supermarché et à la pharmacie...."


Hope this helps!


 

Aaron

Kwiziq community member

18 August 2017

2 replies

Pour ceux qui visitent le Canada, ici, on dit « magasiner » au lieu de « faire du shopping » :)

Ron

Kwiziq community member

20 August 2017

20/08/17

Bonjour Aaron,
Merci pour avoir donné cette information.
Bonne chance.

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

23 August 2017

23/08/17

Merci de cette précision Aaron !

[to Ron: "Merci de nous avoir donné cette information."
See lesson:
https://progress.lawlessfrench.com/revision/grammar/how-to-use-merci-de-pour-to-say-thank-you-for  ]

Bonne journée !

Christy

Kwiziq community member

7 July 2016

1 reply

Ma mère et moi avons fait du shopping aux États-Unis aujourd'hui.

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

11 July 2016

11/07/16

Bravo Christy, très bonne phrase !

Find your French level for FREE

Test your French to the CEFR standard

find your French level

Share the love!

Thinking...