In France, the bise is a northern wind, cold and generally dry. It may also refer to a traditional French greeting among close friends and family members. It consists of two, three, or four kisses on the cheek. The number depends on the region where the person lives.
In Switzerland the bise blows from the north-east, above all during the winter months, and is due to a high-pressure cell north-west of Switzerland. The effects of the bise are strongest in Geneva, situated in a narrow passage between the Jura mountains in the West and the Alps in the South. Many foreign travellers to this Swiss city have commented upon it. It may also refer to a traditional greeting among close friends and family members. It consists of three kisses on the cheek.