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All about the French phrase "Je n'ai pas le temps"

You are going to discover all the things you ever wanted to know about the basic French phrase "Je n'ai pas le temps". To be clear, this includes a complete explanation of what it is and how to use it in a normal conversation with an audio example. But, we also added some super useful stuff like slow pronunciation audio, synonyms, dialogue example and more!

French to English translation

  • Translation : I don't have time

  • Register : Neutral - Basic

Audio pronunciation



  • IPA : / ʒə ne pa lə tɑ̃ /

aesthetic french quote pas le temps

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What does it mean?


It literally means:

This is the academic way to say: "I don't have time" in French. For the version we use the most: you can skip the " n' " if you want and say "J'ai pas le temps" instead, this is totally fine too.

How to use it

Let's say that someone just asked you if you have time to watch a football match this afternoon. But you already have some things planned... so you say "J'ai pas le temps." to express: "I can't, I'm busy/I don't have time"

It's important to note that "J'ai pas le temps" means that you don't have time for this specific task. If instead you want to say that you don't have time for you in general, use: "J'ai pas de temps pour moi." which means "I don't have any time for me".

Synonyms / Related

↓ Example in a story with English translation ↓

Finally, let's see an example in a parallel story with slow audio.

Les joueurs de jeux-vidéo

The video game players

ChristianLéa ?! Comment ça va ?
Léa?! How is it going?
LéaJe vais bien et toi ? Qu'est-ce que tu fais ici ?
I'm fine and you? What are you doing here?
ChristianJe vais bien, merci. Je sortais juste les poubelles.
I'm fine, thanks. I was just taking out the trash.
LéaAh, je vois.
Ah, I see.
ChristianEt toi ?
And you?
LéaJe faisais des courses.
I was running errands.
ChristianOk... Je voulais te demander, tu aimes les jeux vidéos ?
Ok... I wanted to ask you, do you like video games?
LéaEuh... oui. Pourquoi cette question ?
Hmm... yes. Why this question?
ChristianParce que je cherche quelqu'un pour jouer à la PlayStation avec moi.
Because I'm looking for someone to play PlayStation with me.


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Tu es prêt ?


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Ce n'est pas mon truc

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