How To Write A French Bank Cheque In France The Right Way

Filling out a French cheque isn’t rocket science. However, they’re designed a little differently than you may be used to. Here’s a detailed explanation of how to do it, with a video tutorial included.

By Annie André ⦿ updated January 11, 2024  
How to write and fill in a French bank check (cheque)
How to write and fill in a French bank check (cheque)

Writing a cheque in French from your French bank account isn’t rocket science; however, there are a few nuances you need to understand in order to properly fill one out.  Here’s what you need to know.


It never fails.

Whenever I’m in a rush at the grocery store, I end up behind someone slowly writing out a cheque for their groceries.

Despite the popularity of debit cards, credit cards and electronic payments like PayPal, it’s still quite normal to see someone in France whip out their chequebook to pay for things like groceries, particularly in the countryside and amongst the elderly.

France accounts for over half of all cheques written in the entire EU. According to the Bank of France, 7 out of every 10 cheques written in 2017 in the European Union were written in France.

Even if you don’t think you’ll use cheques, there are certain situations where you may not have a choice.

Here are a few situations where I personally had no choice but to write a check in France. 

  • Real estate deposit & rental deposit
  • Deposit for children’s annual sports memberships (paid to associations).
  • Purchasing a used car
  • At a restaurant that doesn’t take credit cards, and when I don’t have enough cash for the bill, I just whip out my chequebook

6 Steps to writing a French bank cheque

I’ve got you covered.

Here are the instructions on how to fill out the six areas of a French bank check.

  1. You can watch the video above.
  2. You can also study infographic below.
  3. Or you can read the instructions below the infographic.

1. Write the amount of the cheque in words (in French).

Payez contre ce chèque: = Pay against this cheque.

The first two lines on a French bank cheque are reserved for the cheque amount, which you must write out in words. And you must write the amount out in French.

If you don’t speak French or don’t know how to spell French numbers, this could be a problem because you cannot write out the amount in English or any other language.

There are some solutions. You could ask the person you are giving the cheque to fill out the amount for you. Or you could carry around a cheat sheet of French numbers written out in words.

Here’s an example of 1 575 euros and 99 centimes written in French:

a) Mille-cinq-cent-soixante-quinze euros et quatre-vingt-dix-neuf centimes.

You can also write the centimes (cents) out as numbers rather than words, as indicated in example (b) below.

b) Mille-cinq-cent-soixante-quinze euros et 99 cent

**Write the word “et” between the euros and centimes, which means “and.”

**If there is an empty space left over at the end, draw a line through it.

2. Write the name of the person or business you are paying

A l’ordre de: =Pay to the order

On the line marked “A l’ordre de,” write the name of the person or business to whom you want to make the cheque out.

3. How to write the amount of euros in french


In the box next to the € sign, write the amount of the cheque in numbers. Make sure it matches the amount you wrote out in words in step one.

**Do not use a decimal for the cents. In France, a comma is used instead.

RIGHT: 1 575,99 (Notice the decimal use for showing cents)

WRONG: 1,575.99 (Do not use a decimal for the thousands place or decimal for cents)

4. Write the city location

Fait à or A: Done in or at

The wording for this area will vary by bank, but in general, you’ll see the words “Fait à” or just “A” on the right-hand side of the cheque.

This line is reserved for the name of the city where you are writing the cheque.

For instance, if you live in Marseille and write a check in Paris, you would write Paris on the cheque, NOT Marseille.

5. Write the date

Le: The

Next to the line marked “Le,” write the date on the right-hand side of the cheque.

Make sure you use the format Day/Month/Year. 

6. Sign the  cheque


In the bottom right-hand corner is where you sign your cheque. Often there is nothing to indicate that this is where you sign—no line, nothing, just wide a wide-open space. Sign anyways otherwise;, your cheque can’t be cashed.

Sample cheque

Below is an example of a cheque written out to the French president, Emmanuel Macron, in the amount of “one-thousand-seventy-five euros and ninety-nine centimes in Paris on the 31st of January, 2021.

This is not a real check, and the account numbers are made up.

How to write / fill out a French bank cheque

How to write / fill out a French bank cheque

French Bank Cheque Vocabulary

Bank cheque= chèque bancaire

A cheque= Un chèque.

Blank cheque = Chèque bancaire vierge

Bad cheque, rubber cheque, bounced cheque = chèque sans provision or chèque en bois. The latter literally translates as “wooden cheque.”

A cheque book= Une Chéquier or un Carnet de chèques

Write a cheque= Faire un chèque

Make check payable to= Veuillez libeller votre chèque à l’ordre de

Fill out the check= Remplir un chèque

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Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a 'petite commission' at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase through my links. It helps me buy more wine and cheese. Please read my disclosure for more info.

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Annie André

Annie André

About the author

I'm Annie André, a bilingual North American with Thai and French Canadian roots. I've lived in France since 2011. When I'm not eating cheese, drinking wine or hanging out with my husband and children, I write articles on my personal blog for intellectually curious people interested in all things France: Life in France, travel to France, French culture, French language, travel and more.


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