These useful Arabic phrases will get you by if you're traveling to Arabic country for the first time. While it's best to take formal Arabic lessons in your efforts to learn a foreign language, you can always learn from online courses, audio CDs and other unconventional methods. While many Arabs will speak English, they will be touched by your effort to use their language, even if your accent is off and your pronunciation incorrect. Do your best to memorize these basic common Arabic phrases before your trip.
A Note About Pronunciation
You will need help with some pronunciation issues when learning Arabic. Whenever you learn a foreign language that has different characters, you will have to learn pronunciations of characters that will feel strange or uncomfortable for you. Ask for help with the light and heavy pronunciations of the letters "h," "s," "d" and "z." With practice, you'll start to recognize the different sounds and figure out which sounds belong where. Pay attention to what accent the locals use and what emphasis is placed on what portion of the word spoken. Some words change meaning when you change the emphasis. For example, the word "shukran" can mean either "thank you" or "no thanks," depending on the emphasis.
Arabic Phrases For Travelers
These Arabic phrases are all written phonetically so you will know how to say them.
There are several greetings commonly used in Arabic countries, but this is the most commonly used one.
Affwan: Excuse me.
Hal Tatkalam Al Engleaziah?: Do you speak English?
Wanty bkheer?: Are you okay?
Anty bkheer: I'm fine.
Kayfa al hal?: How are you?
Shuk-ran: Thank you.
Maza touridou an taf'al al lyom?: What do you want to do today?
Bekam?: How much does that cost?
Azaan or Adhan: Call to prayer
Maktab Al Taiaran: Airlines office
Jawaz Safar: Passport