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Useful contacts

 Police emergency : 17

Fire brigade : 18

SAMU : 15

Emergency doctor : 3624

Poison treatment center : 04 91 75 25 25

Items lost and found : 04 91 50 26 60

Pharmacy on duty : 3237

Emergency dentist : 0 892 566 766

Veterinarian emergencies : 04 91 13 44 44

Theft/lost of Visa Card : 0 892 705 705

EU emergency number : 112

Emergency traveller : 04 91 62 12 80


Items lost and found
41 bd de Briançon - 13003    T: 04 91 50 26 60

Consumer complaints
: in case of dispute with a hotel, restaurant, retailer, you should contact the Direction Départementale de la Concurrence, de la Consommation et de la Répression des Fraudes (departmental consumer rights organization)
22 rue Borde - 13008 - T: 04 91 17 95 00


Working hours

Shops opening hours are 10am to 7pm Monday to Saturday. Reduced hours or closed on Sunday, especially supermarkets which are mostly closed on Sunday. There are however little groceries opened on Sunday until 1am or until late evening. The shopping mall « Centre Bourse » on Canebière is opened on Sunday such as boutiques located on Saint Ferreol Street, including the famous Galeries Lafayette. 


Safety and security

Note that there are many reports of muggings and pickpockets so avoid carrying valuables and always watch your surroundings, like in most cities. You will want to stay away from Gare St Charles and the upper part of La Canebière at night. Most of the northern neighborhoods, known as "quartiers nords", are sensitive areas and should be avoided by tourists.

When driving a car, make sure the doors are locked. There have been occurrences of motorcyclists opening the doors of cars while the driver is sitting in it, and quickly snatching the bags and valuables from the seats.



Marseille benefits from a Mediterranean climate of hot summers, mild winters, plentiful sunshine and infrequent rain. Marseille sees tourist activity not only during the summer, but also during the spring, fall and winter because the climate here is exceptionally pleasant all year round. However, Marseille is known for the Mistral, a fierce, cold, dry wind from the north or north-west which roars down the Rhône Valley towards the coast. It can reach speeds of over 90 km (56 miles) an hour, can last for days and is usually accompanied by bright blue skies and glorious sunshine. But it is guaranteed to make temperatures plummet.

Language – list of common phrases

Words for Tourists

These basic words might come in handy in your daily interaction with the French people you meet.

  • Oui/Non (whee/no) - yes/no
  • S'il vous plaît (see voo play) - Please
  • Parlez-vous anglais? (parlay vooz ong-glay) - Do you speak English?
  • Merci (mair-see) - Thank you
  • Voici (vwah-see) - Here is
  • Voilà (vwah-la)- There is
  • De rien (du-rhee-en) - You're welcome
  • Je ne comprends pas (zhe nhe comp-rehn pah) - I don't understand
  • J'ai besoin d'aide (zhay buh-swahn ded) - I need help
  • Excusez-moi (escoosay mwah) - Excuse me
  • Je ne sais pas (zhe-nhe say paw) - I don't know
  • Il y a (eel ee aw) - There is



In France, a greeting is simply being polite. Greet shop owners when you walk into their boutiques, and make sure to say something on your way out as well.

  • Bonjour (bon zhoor) - Good morning
  • Bonsoir ( bon swar) - Good night/evening
  • Bon après-midi (bon ah-pray mee-dee) - Good afternoon
  • Madame (mah-dahm) - Miss (or Mrs. preceeded by a last name)
  • Monsieur (mihn-see-yuh) - Sir
  • Comment allez-vous?(co-mo-tah-lay-voo) - How are you?
  • Au revoir (o-rhe-vwa) - Good bye


Informal Greetings

These are not things you would say to someone you don't know, however these familiar phrases are something you'd use with your buddies or peers.

  • Salut (saw-loo) - Hi
  • Ça va? (saw-vaw) - How's it going?
  • Ça va bien (saw-vaw-bee-en) - I'm fine

Note: Salut and ça va are often used together as in, "Salut! Ça va?"


Question Words

While traveling, you may find it very helpful to have a good command of basic question words and phrases.

  • Combien? (comb-bee-en) - How much?
  • Où? (oo) - Where?
  • Quand? (kond) - When?
  • Pourquoi? (por-kwah) - Why?
  • Comment? (co mo) - How?