The difference between a driver and a chauffeur.

Throughout the post-Soviet space, the Russian-speaking population in colloquial speech still often uses the term "driver". Everyone knows that "chauffeur" and "driver" are the same concepts. At the same time, everything is clear with the "driver" - the word comes from the verb "to drive". But what about the word "chauffeur"? Where did it come from and how does it differ from the "driver"?


Driver - it is a general term for any person driving any vehicle. A person who is in a vehicle and is teaching driving is also called a driver.

Chauffeur is a narrower definition, more often used to denote a person's belonging to a profession.


The term "chauffeur" has French roots (fr. Chauffeur - "fireman", "stoker"). It has been introduced into use in Russia since the appearance of self-propelled carts with a steam power plant. They used firewood and coal as fuel.

The concept of “chauffeur” was popular in the Soviet years, but over time the term “driver” began to supplant it. Currently, the word "driver" is widely used both in colloquial speech and in official documents. So, the traffic rules give a detailed definition of who is the driver, and the word "driver" is no longer used at the official level.

Historically, it is customary to call a chauffeur a person whose profession is directly related to driving vehicles, i.e. specialist.

“Driver” is a more general concept that encompasses all people who drive vehicles, most often cars.


  1. Driver - any person driving a vehicle or being in it while learning to drive.
  2. A chauffeur is a professional whose activities are related to transport management.
  3. The term "chauffeur" comes from a French word that means "stoker", "stoker".
  4. The concept of "chauffeur" is more often used in relation to the profession, and "driver" - to any person who has a driver's license or operates a mode of transport (most often a car).
  5. In the Soviet era, the term “chauffeur” was used more often than “driver”, now it is the other way around.
  6. The concept of "driver" supplants the word "driver", which is gradually becoming obsolete, archaism (obsolete).