When you want to express the idea of "manage to do something", do these three verbs somehow differ in meaning?

« J'espère qu'on parviendra à trouver Camille. »

« J'espère qu'on arrivera à trouver Camille. »

« J'espère qu'on réussira à trouver Camille. »

3 Answers 3


All phrases mean the same with some subtile differences:

  • arrivera is the most neutral
  • parviendra expresses the idea of long journey/trip/work/effort
  • réussira expresses the idea of a final success/hapiness

Difficult to say more without the context.


Using the verb arriver and réussir is more natural than using the verb parvenir. But all these three have almost exactly the same meaning.

  • 2
    I personally feel a slight difference in tone between "réussir" and "arriver". "réussir" feels a bit more positive than "arriver", which make the example with "réussira" more optimistic, while "arrivera" is still rather neutral. Still, good answer.
    – Aralicia
    Jan 28, 2016 at 18:41
  • 1
    +1 - you could add: aboutir à. Jan 29, 2016 at 7:47

I would say that there is a difference between réussir and arriver ; or rather arriver has a richer meaning than réussir : arriver means that you have "réussi" doing something after making an effort. I find that sentences (1) are correct, but sentences (2) sound strange to my ear :

(1)a : J'ai réussi à faire cela du premier coup.
(1)b : Il réussit à faire tout ce qu'il veut sans le moindre effort.

(2)a : ??? Je suis arrivé à faire cela du premier coup.
(2)b : ??? Il arrive à faire tout ce qu'il veut sans le moindre effort.

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