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Conditional Present Uses

Conditional Present Uses

  • The Conditional Present is used to express a condition: I would do [something]: WOULD.
I would like Paris. J’aimerais Paris.
We would love to eat. On aimerait manger. [coll.]Nous aimerions manger.


  • The Conditional Present is also used to express a polite request: WOULD LIKE, COULD.
I’d like a cup of coffee. Je voudrais un café SVP.
Could you give me the water please? Pourriez-vous me donner l’eau SVP ?


  • When the verb DEVOIR is in the conditional, it means SHOULD:
I should go to the supermarket. Je devrais aller au supermarché.
I would go to the supermarket. J’irais au supermarché.


  • Most of the time, the present conditional is used in combination with an IF clause. In that case, the IF clause uses the imparfait.

conditional clause

IF clause

I would do the groceries

if I had time.

J’irais faire les courses

si j’avais le temps.

We would visit the Louvre Museum

if we stayed longer.

On visiterait le Louvre

si on restait plus longtemps.

They would call

if they had a cell phone.

Ils appelleraient

s’ils avaient un portable.


Continue with the Conditional Present Formation in the Premium worksheet.

Your turn

Practice translating this passage:

If I had time, I would go to Paris. I would visit the Eiffel Tower. I would have a shellfish platter at La Coupole. I would do a few guided walks. I would be very happy and I would come back home with lots of wonderful memories.



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