common arabic phrases

101 Common Arabic Phrases You Need to Know

We understand that venturing into a new language can be daunting. But fear not! Arabic, while beautiful in its complexity, has a surprisingly approachable foundation. This guide focuses on basic Arabic phrases, making it perfect for beginners and seasoned travelers alike.

Throughout this post, we’ll explore various categories of common Arabic phrases, from greetings and introductions to travel essentials and cultural nuances. We’ll even go into some regional variations like Egyptian Arabic phrases and Modern Standard Arabic phrases. So, grab your cup of Arabic coffee (Qahwa – قهوة), and let’s get started on this exciting language learning journey!

Why Learn Common Arabic Phrases?

The benefits of learning Arabic phrases are numerous. Here are just a few reasons to get started:

  • Enhance your travels: Imagine confidently navigating bustling Aswaaq – أسواق (markets) in Morocco or ordering a delicious meal in Egypt. Arabic phrases open doors (literally and metaphorically) and enrich your travel experience.
  • Connect with locals: A simple “hello” in Arabic can break the ice and foster genuine connections with native speakers.
  • Boost your brainpower: Learning a new language keeps your mind sharp and improves cognitive flexibility.
  • Expand your cultural horizons: Arabic is a window into a rich and diverse culture. Understanding basic phrases allows you to appreciate customs and traditions on a deeper level.
    Find more about the benefits of learning Arabic in this article.

Essential Arabic Pronunciation Tips

Before getting started into common Arabic phrases used most of the time, let’s address Arabic pronunciation. Arabic has some unique sounds that may be unfamiliar to English speakers. Here are a few key tips:

  • The “’ayn” sound (ع): This sound, resembling a throaty “uh,” is produced from the back of the throat.
  • The “kha” sound (خ): Imagine a guttural “h” sound, like a forceful exhale.
  • The “qaaf” sound (ق): This sound is similar to the “k” in “kit” but pronounced with the uvula (the fleshy bump at the back of your mouth) instead of the tongue.

Don’t worry about perfect pronunciation from the start. Focus on clear enunciation and practice makes perfect!

Mastering Basic Arabic Phrases, Greetings and Introductions (Modern Standard Arabic Phrases)

common arabic phrases

First impressions matter, and Arabic greetings are a fantastic way to start conversations on the right foot. Here are some essential greeting common Arabic phrases to remember:

  1. مرحبا (Marhaban): Hello (formal)
  2. السلام عليكم (As-salamu alaykum): Peace be upon you (formal greeting used by Muslims)
  3. أهلا (Ahlan): Welcome
  4. ما اسمك؟ (Ma ismuka/ismuki?) – What’s your name? 
  5. اسمي… (Ismi…): My name is…
  6.  كيف حالك؟ (Kaifa Haluka): How are you?
  7. بخير (Bi Khair): I am good/fine.
  8. سعيد بمعرفتك (Sa’eed bi ma’refatuk): Nice to meet you.
  9. أراك في المرة القادمة (Araka fi al-marrati al-qadima) – See you next time.
  10.  أراك قريبًا (Arak qariban) – See you soon.
  11.  مع السلامة (Ma’a as-salama) – Goodbye.
  12.  وداعاً (Wada’an) – Another way to say goodbye.

Learn more about the Arabic greetings and responses in detail and learn to pronounce them through this playlist:

Essential Everyday Common Arabic Phrases

Now that you can introduce yourself, let’s explore some everyday common Arabic phrases that will come in handy:

  1. من فضلك (Min Fadlik): Please!
  2. شكرا (Shukran): Thank you.
  3. عفواً (Afuwan) – You’re welcome.
  4. لا (La): No.
  5. نعم (Na’am): Yes.
  6. عذرا (‘Udhran): Excuse me!

Asking Questions

Learning to ask questions is crucial for effective communication. Here are some helpful question words that you will definitely use to create basic Arabic phrases and questions:

  1. كم (Kam): How much?
  2. أين (Ayna): Where?
  3. من (Man): Who?
  4. ماذا (Matha): What?
  5. متى (Mata): When?
  6. لماذا (Lematha): Why?

Understanding Directions

Navigating a new place is easier with a few directional basic Arabic phrases:

  1. يمين (Yameen): Right.
  2. يسار (Yasar): Left.
  3. مستقيم (Mustaqeem): Straight.
  4. فوق (Fawq): Up.
  5. تحت (Taht): Down.

General Common Arabic Phrases (Modern Standard Arabic Phrases)

These basic Arabic phrases are commonly used to survive any time you need, daily:

  1. صباح الخير (Sabahul-khayr) – Good morning: Used to greet someone in the morning.
  2. مساء الخير (Masa’aul-khayr) – Good evening: Used to greet someone in the evening.
  3. تصبح على خير (Tusbih ‘ala khayr) – Good night: Said when parting at night or before going to sleep.
  4. أنا آسف (Ana asif) – I am sorry.
  5. ما هذا؟ (Ma hadha?) – What is this?: To ask about something unfamiliar.
  6. أين الفندق؟ (Ayna al-funduq?) – Where is the hotel?
  7. أين الحمام؟ (Ayn al-hammam?) – Where is the bathroom?
  8. أريد ماء، من فضلك (Uridu ma’an, min fadlik) – I want water, please.
  9. كم ثمن هذا؟ (Kam thaman hadha?) – How much is this?.=
  10. أنا جائع (Ana ja’i’) – I am hungry.
  11. أين المطار؟ (Ayna al-matar?) – Where is the airport?: Useful for travelers when navigating to the airport.
  12. أين يمكنني شراء تذكرة؟ (Ayn yumkinuni shiraa’ tathkarah?) – Where can I buy a ticket?
  13. أريد حجز غرفة (Uridu hajz ghurfah) – I want to book a room.
  14. كم يستغرق الوصول إلى…؟ (Kam yastaghriqu al-wusul ila…?) – How long does it take to get to…?
  15. أين السوق؟ (Ayn as-souq?) – Where is the market?
  16. أريد طبيباً (Urid tabiban) – I need a doctor.
  17. هل يمكنني الاتصال بالإنترنت هنا؟ (Hal yumkinuni al itisaal bel-internet huna?) – Can I get internet access here?
  18. أين أجد سيارة أجرة؟ (Ayna ajidu sayarat ujrah?) – Where can I find a taxi?
  19. أريد تبديل هذا (Uridu tabdeel hadha) – I want to exchange this: Handy in shops if you need to exchange an item.
  20. أنا تائه. (Ana ta’ih.) – I am lost: To express that you can’t find your way.
  21. أريد أن أذهب إلى… (Uridu an adhhab ila…) – I want to go to…: To specify a destination you wish to reach.
  22. هل يمكنني الدخول؟ (Hal yumkinuni al dakhul?) – May I enter?: To ask for permission to enter a place.

Egyptian Arabic Phrases

common arabic phrases

These common Arabic phrases in Egyptian colloquial Arabic are commonly used to survive during your stay in Egypt:

  1. إزيك؟ (Izzayak/Izzayik?) – How are you?: A casual greeting used among friends.
  2. عامل إيه؟ (‘Aamel eh?) – How are you doing?: Another way to ask someone about their well-being.
  3. ماشي (Mashi) – Okay/Alright: To show agreement or that everything is fine.
  4. تمام (Tamam) – Fine/Okay: To confirm that something is good or agreeable.
  5. يلا (Yalla) – Let’s go/Hurry up: To urge someone to be quick or to start moving.
  6. خلاص (Khalas) – Enough/Finished: To indicate that something is done or to stop.
  7. بكام؟ (Bi kam?) – How much is this?: Important when shopping or dealing with services.
  8. أنا عايز… (Ana ‘ayez…) – I want…: To express a desire or need for something.
  9. ممكن تساعدني؟ (Momken tsa’adni?) – Can you help me?
  10. يا اسطى! (Ya ustā!) – Hey, driver!: To get the attention of a taxi or bus driver.
  11. معلش (Ma’lesh) – It’s okay/never mind: To downplay a mistake or an inconvenience.
  12. عايز أروح… (‘Ayez arouh…) – I want to go to…: To tell a driver or someone where you want to go.
  13. عايز أفهم (‘Ayez afham) – I want to understand.
  14. إنت منين؟ (Enta menyn?) – Where are you from?
  15. أنا مبسوط/ أنا فرحان (Ana mabsout – Ana farhan) – I am happy.

Funny Arabic Phrases (Egyptian Arabic Phrases)

These are some said proverbs in Egyptian colloquial Arabic that are commonly used in a lot of situations, have a sarcastic and humorous sense: 

  1. التكرار يعلّم الحمار (Al-tikrar yi’allem al-humar): It literally means (Repetition teaches the donkey) and corresponds to (practice makes perfect).
  2. في العجلة الندامة وفي التأني السلامة (Fil-‘agalah el-nadama w fil-ta’anni es-salama): Haste leads to regret, and caution leads to safety.
  3. القرد في عين أمه غزال (El-qird fi ‘ayn ummu ghazal) – The monkey is a gazelle in his mother’s eyes: Meaning love is blind.
  4. لبس البوصة، تبقى عروسة (Labbes el-bousa, teb’a ‘arousa) – Dress up a stick, and it becomes a doll: Meaning anyone can look good with the correct and right choice of clothes.
  5. فولة وانقسمت نصين (Foola wa in’asamet nossein) – A bean split in two: Used to describe two things that are very similar, like two peas in a pod.

Arabic Love Phrases – Romantic Arabic Phrases (Modern Standard Arabic Phrases)

These are some words and common Arabic phrases  in Modern Standard Arabic that are commonly used in romantic situations with your loved ones:

  1. أحبك (Uhibbuk) – I love you
  2. أعشقك (A’shaquk) – I adore you
  3. أشتاق إليك (Ishtaqtu ilayk) – I miss you.
  4. أنت حب عمري (Anta hubb ‘omry) – You are the love of my life.
  5. أحبك بكل ما أملك (Uhibbuka bi-kulli ma amlik) – I love you with all that I have.
  6. أنت قلبي (Anta Qalbi) – You are my heart.
  7. أنت كل شيء بالنسبة لي (Anta kull shay’in bennesbati li) – You are everything to me.
  8. أنت روح قلبي (Anta roohu qalbi) – You are my heart.
  9. أنت نور عيني (Anta nooru ‘ayni) – You are the light of my eyes.

Also, here are some of the love Arabic words that you can use and their explanation:

Arabic Islamic Phrases (Modern Standard Arabic Phrases)

common arabic phrases

These are some words and basic Arabic phrases  in Modern Standard Arabic that are commonly used by Muslims:

  1. الحمد لله (Alhamdulillah) – Praise be to Allah: Used to express satisfaction or gratitude for good outcomes.
  2. جزاك الله خيرا (Jazak Allahu Khairan) – May Allah reward you with good: A phrase of appreciation and thanks.
  3. سبحان الله (Subhanallah) – Glory be to Allah: Exclaimed to express amazement or praise for Allah’s creation.
  4. ما شاء الله (Masha’Allah) – As Allah has willed: Said to show appreciation for something good and as a reminder that all things happen by the will of Allah.
  5. الله أكبر (Allahu Akbar) – Allah is the Greatest: A declaration of faith and recognition of Allah’s greatness.
  6. إن شاء الله (In sha’ Allah) – If Allah wills: Used when speaking about future events, expressing hope that it will happen if Allah wills it.
  7. لا حول ولا قوة إلا بالله (La hawla wala quwwata illa billah) – There is no power nor strength except through Allah: Recited in times of difficulty or when facing a situation beyond one’s control.
  8. آمين (Ameen) – Amen: A declaration of affirmation, often used at the end of prayers to agree with what has been said.

Arabic Phrases for Travel (Basic Arabic Phrases for Tourists)

common arabic phrases

These are some essential Arabic phrases  in Modern Standard Arabic that are commonly used to survive in any Arab country:

  1. هل تتحدث الإنجليزية؟ (Hal tatahdath al-ingliziyya?) – Do you speak English?
  2. أين يمكنني إيجاد سيارة أجرة؟ (Ayna yomkinani ijaad sayarat ‘ujra?) – Where can I find a taxi?
  3. أحتاج طبيبا (Ahtaju tabeeban) – I need a doctor.
  4. كم ثمن هذا؟ (Kam thaman hadha?) – How much is this?
  5. أهلا (Ahlan.) – Hello.
  6. مع السلامة (Ma’a as-salama.) – Goodbye.
  7. من فضلك (Min fadlik.) – Please.
  8. شكراً (Shukran.) – Thank you.
  9. أنا آسف (Ana asif.) – I’m sorry.
  10. نعم (Na’am.) – Yes.
  11. لا (La.) – No.
  12. ما اسمك؟ (Ma ismuk?) – What’s your name?
  13. كيف حالك؟ (Kaifa haluk?) – How are you?

Find a lot of other Arabic survival phrases for tourists in our Arabic for Travel guide with detailed explanations in addition to tips and tricks for a better journey in the Arab world.


Now you have most of the essential and common Arabic phrases that you will need mostly everyday if you’re learning Arabic or you’re heading to a destination in the Arab world. All of these phrases and essential words and more are taught by our native Arabic teachers in Arabic Tutor Online in our Intensive Survival Basic Arabic Course, for all travelers that will equip you with all that you need before you travel to any destination in the Arab world and to deal in Arabic easily and confidently in different situations.

Those basic Arabic phrases will guarantee you easy learning, dealing with Arabs with confidence and making sure you can deal with different situations you might face as a tourist. We hope this is useful for you and you can make it to be a fluent Arabic speaker shortly and with ease.

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