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Italki Review

Wednesday, May 29th

2024 French Lesson Reviews

Italki Review 4.5 Star Rating


4.5 Star Rating
  • One-on-one live lessons
  • More than 1,000 French teachers to choose from
  • Convenient booking system
  • Affordable

Italki started out in 2006 as a social network for language exchange. A couple years later they created an environment where students could pay teachers online for language lessons. They've continued to grow, and now offer over 150 languages from 20,000 teachers available from anywhere in the world.

Easy to start

Signing up with Italki is so much easier - and cheaper - then flying to France so you can learn French from a real French-speaking person. You don't have to sign up for a long-term plan and you don't have an auto-renewing subscription. This is so simple, it feels like it should be harder. What it's not is an online set of French courses where you'll use cute flashcards to learn vocabulary and play matching games to see if you have retained the material. There are no prizes or clapping kitties when you pass a level. There's no set progression from beginning French lessons to advanced lessons in a set curriculum. And that's okay. If you would like that, and there's nothing wrong with that, you can find an excellent online French learning program from our list. And then, you can use italki to practice what you've learned in a real conversational setting.

Italki itself is a facilitator

Sometimes you just want the human factor when learning something. Maybe you've taken online classes where you have spoken in the mic and you listen to yourself. In that situation, no one gives you feedback so you know if you can carry on a conversation. What you'd want instead is italki. Italki is a facilitator to connect you with a real, live person to help you with your French. You decide what you want to learn and they'll teach it to you. Or if you're already taking a course and want a tutor, get one from italki.

No long-term subscriptions to sign up for

With italki, you select your teacher and then sign up for a lesson in their available time slot. That's it. Sign up for as many or as few sessions as you need, and sign up whenever you want. You're not paying italki on a monthly plan or a yearly subscription - you're making an appointment with a tutor like you would any other professional.

Choose a teacher

Go on the italki website and click on French. You'll see a ton of teachers to choose from. From their bio you can see what their native languages are, how much French they know, how other students have rated them, and more. You would let them know your needs: if you need help with your current French class, if you want to practice speaking French with someone, or if you want to learn French for business or travel. There are so many French speakers to choose from; you can stick with one or switch it up to hear a different accent or learn from someone new.

Two types of teachers

First, there are actual teachers. They have a degree in education or a teaching certificate, and these teachers can charge more as they are qualified in this area. The other type of teacher is a community tutor. They tend to be less expensive and wouldn't have the credentials. All of that said, not all actual teachers may teach the way you want to learn; and on the other hand, there may be community tutors that are very good at teaching. The community tutors can tend to try really hard as their pay starts out less and they want to earn higher pay with more fabulous reviews. See what - or who - is best for you.

Best French Lessons

Language partners

This is a unique, free feature where you can find someone to speak French with, and they'll want to speak English with you. This is like meeting a new friend - it is not a format for classes or lessons, though. Wouldn't you like to chat with a native French speaker? Well, they would like to talk with you, too. Share time speaking each language, and maybe an online friendship could occur.

Easy to schedule a session

After you've selected a tutor, italki shows you the available times for lessons. If you like the tutor but they don't seem to be available when you are, you can message them if they could meet you when you are available - the worst they can say is no, right?.

There's no set curriculum

Italki doesn't offer courses. It offers French speakers to help you. Many of them have taught French courses before, so you can ask if they are willing and able to teach you beginning French, or French for business, or help you do well on your high school French AP exam, or if they have courses they could teach you. Whatever your French language needs, there should definitely be someone to help you. If you just want to learn French, though, and there's no consistency in curricula from one teacher to another, what do you do? Well, let's find out.

So what can they teach you?

That depends on the teacher. Click on a teacher. Watch their video where they describe how they teach. Read about them as a teacher and their teaching style. Under their teaching style, they might list the resources they have available, such as flashcards, text documents, presentation slides, and homework. Feel free to message them to tell them what you want to learn and see if they are willing and able to help you meet your goals. If so, see if their price works with your budget and give it a go.

You can even do a combination

Maybe you want a set curriculum from an online French course, so italki isn't for you. Well, we have several highly rated online French programs for you to choose from. Learn and practice with that French program, and when you want someone to converse with as a change of pace, sign up with someone from italki and improve your conversational skills. Or get personal help from an italki teacher if you're stuck in a lesson. There's so much you can do and learn when talking with a French-speaking person, and italki is where you'll find them.

Best French Lessons


Italki prices are pretty straightforward:

  • From $5 per hour to $30 per hour
  • Discounted prices on three trial lessons

Trial lessons

Italki allows you three trial lessons at a reduced price to check out the program and try a few teachers. They're not free because there's an actual person helping you and they should receive at least some pay for their time.

Refund policy

All payments are final, and remember, the person you're working with deserves to be paid for their time. That said, you can receive either a refund or credit toward another class if you have canceled a class in time, your teacher has canceled a class, or if you have reported a problem with the session.

Italki is ideal for improving French conversational skills

It's fun to learn a language, but there's nothing like the thrill of speaking it and having someone actually understand you. It brings your lessons alive and opens up your world. With italki you have more than 1,000 French teachers who can teach you exactly what you want to learn, or you can choose people to converse with so you can become proficient and confident in your French speaking skills.

For what it is, it's fabulous

In our normal world, it's not easy finding someone to practice French with. In an italki world, it's easy as pie. Sign up to improve your conversational skills or for lessons. Improve your conversation and improve your French accent. Because the teachers may or may not be consistent with each other, you may have to work with a few different people until you get someone that can meet your educational needs. Some have curricula that can work with you, some don't. Or if instead you choose to sign up for a traditional online course that we can recommend for you, use italki teachers for tutoring and actual French conversation. Either way, italki has a lot to offer that you simply won't find anywhere else.

Who Offers the Best French Lessons?

When we think of someone speaking French, we think soothing and seductive, as it's simply dreamy to hear. We think of the romance of Paris with the Eiffel Tower, of Southern France with the rolling lavender fields, of the Alps with the snow-capped mountains, of the coast with the warm sandy beaches. And of course there's the decadent French food and wine.

Learning French allows you to more fully enjoy French culture. When you learn French, it opens the door to learning phrases that the French speakers use in conversation, manners and mannerisms, how the French live and interact in everyday situations, and perhaps gaining an appreciation and insight into their art and history. There are so many doors to be unlocked once you take the first step.

The Best French Lessons Compare French Lessons Compare French Lesson Reviews What are the best French Lessons Best French Lesson Reviews

French Lesson FAQ

That can be a tricky question! It's estimated that there are about 76 million people who speak French fluently as their first language. But, there are another 235 million individuals that use French daily and fluently without it being their native tongue, plus up to 110 million who use it as a second language with varying levels of proficiency. Beyond France itself, you'll find speakers throughout Africa, India, the Caribbean, and Canada.
There are many different French dialects, depending on where it's spoken, but for the most part they're all mutually understandable. If you learned French from a Parisian and then traveled to Montreal, you would still be able to use the language without much of a problem - though you might need to pick up new vocabulary and train your ear to hear it a little differently. It's similar to the regional accents you'll find within the US - think of how English is spoken in New York vs. Texas, for example - or how English differs depending on whether you're in Canada, England, or Australia.
According to the US State Department, French is a Category I language. That means that French is closely related to English, making it easy to learn! (Spanish, Italian, Swedish, and Romanian are some of the other languages in that category.) Most students of French find the language to be somewhat familiar, which makes it more comfortable to study and to retain the vocabulary.
Start by learning some basic vocabulary. If you've got plans to use French in a specific context, like an upcoming vacation or a business meeting, choose some words and phrases that you'll need there. And, as with any language, the more you can expose yourself to the way it's used by native speakers, the more you'll pick up without even trying. Many students swear by watching TV shows and movies in French (with or without subtitles)!
You won't find a way to learn French that's more convenient or affordable, that's why! While French is one of the most commonly-taught languages in American schools, it can still be hard to find a class that fits your busy schedule. Even if you can find one that works, you may pay a lot of money for a semester of coursework; for that same investment, you could access years of online French lessons.
One reason French is easier to learn than some languages is because it uses the same alphabet is English - mostly. There are a few different characters that you'll need to know how to produce. Fortunately, they're not hard to make: on a smartphone, you can usually hold down the base letter (like c, e, or a) and accented options will pop up. On a desktop pc, there are shortcuts you can use when typing.
Not at all. You could pay under $300 for three levels of French coursework, or study as long as you like on a subscription plan that ranges from $4 to $23 per month. That's much more affordable than in-person lessons!
Each language platform has different policies regarding satisfaction guarantees and refunds. For subscription-based French lessons, you can probably cancel future payments but might not get your money back for what you've already spent. If you've paid a one-time fee for a language program, there may be a 30- to 60-day refund period. We recommend utilizing any trial options offered by a French lessons program before committing to it: you can usually find sample lessons or a one-week all-access pass, and that will help you get a feel for how the platform teaches French.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

Naturally, when we think French we think of France. Yet French is actually a global language and the official language of 29 countries, so you can practice your French language skills in more than one place. French is also a heritage language in all or part of Belgium, Switzerland, Canada, and even the US - like Louisiana.

Picking up the French language may be easier than you might think. Some of us are intimidated by the unusual sounds and the silent letters, but did you know that there are many words that look like English? We'll bet you know these French words: table, responsable, ambiance, brilliance. There are about 1,700 words in French that look like the English word, so there's a good start.

When choosing among the several options for online French lessons, here are some things to consider:

  • Free trial. Look to see if there's a chance to try out the lessons before you buy them to see if this is how you want to learn and to see if you'll stay motivated. Most options include at least a free trial, and some have free access to a limited amount of lessons so you might be able to get all of what you want for free.
  • How they teach. Today there is such a variety of teaching methods in the various online French lesson companies. You can learn individual words with flashcards first and then build to speaking or reading. Some teach by where you hear conversational phrases and build on those. Some build their lessons around grammar and vocabulary while others don't teach grammar specifically - you'll innately catch on the more you practice. Some cut to the chase like textbooks and some use AR and VR to keep you hooked and motivated.
  • How much French you may already know. If you're a beginner, the French lesson world is your oyster - there's so much for you to choose from. If you are at the advanced level and want to polish your skills, most online programs don't teach to your level; though there are a few that could work for you.
  • Your budget. There are some programs where you should be able to get quite a bit of practice for free. Others have a reasonable cost. Some have options for you to have a one-on-one instructor, and those will cost a bit more.
  • One-time purchase or monthly subscription. There's the good, old fashioned way of purchasing a course, and that's where you keep the lessons, learning at your own pace, guilt-free if you need to take a long break. The subscription method is where you pay per month or year to use the product and it automatically renews at the end of that subscription time. You'll be motivated to not take a long hiatus from lessons if you know that your subscription auto renews whether you use it or not.
  • Satisfaction guarantee. Most have a period of time where you can try out the courses to know if you really like them and want to continue. If you're not happy within that time, simply ask for a full refund

Top Consumer Reviews has researched and ranked the most popular French courses available today, to make it easy for you to choose how you'll want to learn French. Whether you're thinking of learning French for the first time or brushing up on what you may have taken in high school, now is a great time to learn French online as there are such a variety of French lesson programs out there. We're sure you'll find at least one that you'd like to try.

Compare French Lessons

Select any 2 French Lessons to compare them head to head

  • Busuu
  • Rosetta Stone
  • Babbel
  • Italki
  • Memrise
  • Mondly
  • Rocket Languages
  • French Pod 101
  • Pimsleur
  • Ouino
  • Fluenz
  • Unforgettable Languages
  • LingQ
  • Strokes International
Busuu vs Rosetta Stone Busuu vs Babbel Busuu vs Italki Busuu vs Memrise Busuu vs Mondly Busuu vs Rocket Languages Busuu vs French Pod 101 Busuu vs Pimsleur Busuu vs Ouino Busuu vs Fluenz Busuu vs Unforgettable Languages Busuu vs LingQ Busuu vs Strokes International Rosetta Stone vs Babbel Rosetta Stone vs Italki Rosetta Stone vs Memrise Rosetta Stone vs Mondly Rosetta Stone vs Rocket Languages Rosetta Stone vs French Pod 101 Rosetta Stone vs Pimsleur Rosetta Stone vs Ouino Rosetta Stone vs Fluenz Rosetta Stone vs Unforgettable Languages Rosetta Stone vs LingQ Rosetta Stone vs Strokes International Babbel vs Italki Babbel vs Memrise Babbel vs Mondly Babbel vs Rocket Languages Babbel vs French Pod 101 Babbel vs Pimsleur Babbel vs Ouino Babbel vs Fluenz Babbel vs Unforgettable Languages Babbel vs LingQ Babbel vs Strokes International Italki vs Memrise Italki vs Mondly Italki vs Rocket Languages Italki vs French Pod 101 Italki vs Pimsleur Italki vs Ouino Italki vs Fluenz Italki vs Unforgettable Languages Italki vs LingQ Italki vs Strokes International Memrise vs Mondly Memrise vs Rocket Languages Memrise vs French Pod 101 Memrise vs Pimsleur Memrise vs Ouino Memrise vs Fluenz Memrise vs Unforgettable Languages Memrise vs LingQ Memrise vs Strokes International Mondly vs Rocket Languages Mondly vs French Pod 101 Mondly vs Pimsleur Mondly vs Ouino Mondly vs Fluenz Mondly vs Unforgettable Languages Mondly vs LingQ Mondly vs Strokes International Rocket Languages vs French Pod 101 Rocket Languages vs Pimsleur Rocket Languages vs Ouino Rocket Languages vs Fluenz Rocket Languages vs Unforgettable Languages Rocket Languages vs LingQ Rocket Languages vs Strokes International French Pod 101 vs Pimsleur French Pod 101 vs Ouino French Pod 101 vs Fluenz French Pod 101 vs Unforgettable Languages French Pod 101 vs LingQ French Pod 101 vs Strokes International Pimsleur vs Ouino Pimsleur vs Fluenz Pimsleur vs Unforgettable Languages Pimsleur vs LingQ Pimsleur vs Strokes International Ouino vs Fluenz Ouino vs Unforgettable Languages Ouino vs LingQ Ouino vs Strokes International Fluenz vs Unforgettable Languages Fluenz vs LingQ Fluenz vs Strokes International Unforgettable Languages vs LingQ Unforgettable Languages vs Strokes International LingQ vs Strokes International
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