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Discover the French phrase "Je suis à la bourre"

We are going to teach you everything you ever wanted to know about the funny French phrase "Je suis à la bourre". Including a complete definition of what it is and how to use it in a casual conversation with an audio example. But wait, we also added some useful stuff like dialogue example, synonyms, slow pronunciation audio and more!

French to English

  • Translation : I'm late

  • Register : Informal - Funny - Slang

Pronunciation example



  • IPA : / ʒə sɥiz‿ a la buʁ /

aesthetic french quote etre a la bourre

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What does it mean?


When French people are running late for something, you can hear them saying: "Je suis en retard" or "Je suis à la bourre" → both versions mean "I am late". The first one is common and has a neutral register while the second is much more informal.

But both are useful in daily life, unless you are always on time! Let's see some examples...

How to use it

The examples below are valid in an informal context, for something more formal (ex: at work) I advise you to use "Je suis en retard instead".

Ex: You are running late for an appointment, and your sibling asks you for something. You can't do it right now, so you say: "Je suis à la bourre" (I'm late). This implies that you have an excuse for not helping him/her now.

For more complete sentences, you can say: "Je ne peux pas, je suis à la bourre" (I can't, I'm late) or "Plus tard, je suis à la bourre" (Later, I'm late) or even "Pas maintenant, je suis à la bourre" (Not now, I'm late).


Example in a dialogue


Désolé, je suis à la bourre

Sorry, I'm late

C'est pas trop tôt !

It was about time!

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J'ai la dalle


To vocabulary list


Désolé pour le retard, je ne voulais pas venir