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10 essential Arabic phrases for beginners

Did you know that Arabic is the official language in 27 countries and has over 380 million native speakers worldwide? It’s also an official language of the United Nations, and the US government has highlighted it as a language of strategic importance.

With a shortage of personnel who can speak and understand the Arabic language and culture in non-Arabic speaking countries, Arabic speakers are in high demand. 

To get you started with Arabic, we’ve listed ten essential phrases below in both their Arabic format and in transliteration (using the Roman alphabet). Note how the language changes when speaking to different genders. 


English Transliteration Arabic
Good morning Sabah alkhayr صباح الخير
Hello ahlan أهلاً!
How are you? (m/f) Kayfa halak / halik? كيف حالك؟
Thanks Shukran شكراً
Please (m/f) Min fadlak / fadlik من فضلك
Good evening Masaa’ alkhayr مساء الخير
Goodbye Ma3a assalamah مع السلامة!
Sorry (m/f) Aasif / aasifah آسف / آسفة!
Do you speak English? (m/f) Hal tatakallam al3arabeyya? هل تتكلم / تتكلمين الانجليزية؟
God willing! Insha’allah ن شاء الله!



Intended for those with no prior knowledge of the language, Arabic for Beginners provides a perfect introduction, teaching you how to pronounce and write the alphabet, as well as simple phrases in both Modern Standard Arabic and Egyptian Colloquial Arabic.