Basic Arabic 2

Basic Arabic

Afwan – sorry/excuse me

Keef haluk? -How are you?

Sometimes shortened to Keefak

To which the reply is:

Al hamdu lillah (bi khair) – praise be to Allah (well)

This should be the usual reply.

Or Zayn which means Fine

You could use:

Ana bikhayr, shukran – I am fine, thank you

Weyn inta – Literally, where are you?, but probably equivalent to Long time no see

Occasionally you will hear:

Shu-ukhbaarak -what’s your news?  – which you would reply to in the normal way


Aysh ismuk or Shu Ismuk -what is your name?

Ismi Jason -my name is Jason


Titakellem ingleezi -do you speak English?

Ana la atakellem al arabi -I don’t speak Arabic

Terrref arabi? -do you know Arabic

Schway shway – a little bit

Atakullum inglieezi -I speak English



Inta min weyn? -where are you from?

Ana min ingliterra -I’m from England

Umreeka -USA

Oostraaalia -Australia

Al imaraaat -UAE

Wa inta? -and you?


Yaallah – come on / let’s go

Mafi Mushkil – no problem, sometimes mish mushkila or mu mushkila


Yani is a phrase thrown in to mean “like” or “you know” see glossary


Maasalaamah -Goodbye

To which the reply is:

Fi aman allah or Maasalaamah


Wayn al hammam – where is the toilet?


Miscellaneous Words


Inshallah -If Allah wishes

This phrase is used in reference to a future, since all things are at Allah’s will. So if you say, see you tomorrow, you might be replied with Inshallah. Indeed, it is used in numerous contexts. You’ll send me the report tomorrow? -Inshallah.

Maashallah -What Allah wishes

This is used when complimenting something, usually in the context of family or health.

Mabrook – Congratulations

This is used in any congratulatory context, more so than you would use in English.


Naam – yes

Aywa – yeah/ok

La – no

Min fudluk – please

Shoo? – what?

Shoofi mafi? -what’s up? or what’s the matter?

Shoo hada? – what is this?

Or you could just use “shoo” and in context it means “what’s happening or what’s going on?

Mafi mushkil -no problem

Itfudul -by my guest / my pleasure


When you sneeze you say

Al hamdu lillah

To which someone will say

Yer humkullah

And you will say again

Yer hamna wa yer humkum


Tamaam – perfect

Baadin – later

Dilwaati – now

Ilyoum – today

Bukra – tomorrow

Ashoofook bukra – see you tomorrow

Aadhi – it’s normal

Jebli shai – bring me some tea  / can I have some tea please

Kallemni – call me/talk to me

Ma adhri – I dont know

Maa-i-khussni – its not my problem

Inta kida – thumbs up

Intaa tabaan thumbs down

Areed areef – i want to know

Mumken asaduq – can i help you


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