how's it going, how is/are ___; I'm fine, it's ok; that's enough
The French expression ça va
is one of the most common in the entire language. It can be both question and answer, but it is informal, so you should try to avoid it when speaking with people you vouvoie
can directly ask how someone is doing:
Salut Guy, ça va ?
Hi Guy, how's it going?
Comment ça va ?
How's it going?
(Related lesson: "How are you" in French
can also be used with a subject or object. Note that it is invariable - no change for a plural subject:
Ça va les filles ?
How's it going, girls?
Ça va le nouvel ordi ?
How's the new computer working?
can also ask whether something that was just discussed is acceptable:
On va partir vers midi, ça va ?
We'll leave around noon, is that ok? Does that work for you?
You can answer any of the above as well as any similar questions with ça va
- Ça va, Marc ? - Ça va. / Oui, ça va.
- How's it going, Marc? - Fine.
- Tu vas bien, André ? - Ça va.
- Are you ok, André? - Yes / I'm ok.
- Il faut être prêt dans une heure, ça va ? - Ça va.
- You have to be ready in an hour, ok? - OK.
ça va aller ?
- will it be ok? will that work?
ça va aller
- it will be ok
ça va bien ?
- is it going well? are you doing well?
ça va bien
- it's going well, I'm doing well
ça va mal
- it's going badly, I'm not doing so well
ça (ne) va pas
- it's not going well, it's not ok
And ça va
can also be an exclamation:
Oh ! Ça va !
Hey, that's enough!
plus an infinitive
can mean simply "it will," as in ça va venir
- it'll happen, it will come.
plus an indirect object pronoun
means "that looks good on ___" or "it suits ___": ça te va (bien)
- that suits you, ça lui va bien
- that looks good on him/her.