So, in preparation for my trip to Egypt (and possibly Jordan) I'd like to learn some useful phrases in Arabic. What phrases are good to know?
Right now I'm working on:
being able to count
asking how much something is
asking where the washroom is
saying thank you
SHUKRAN = thank you
HABIBI (to guy) & HABIBA or HABIBATI/HABIBTI (to girl) ~ means my beloved, darling, etc. Use while ur talking to friends, no to strangers or older ppl (some respekt is must!)
SALAM = peace, use as hello & good bye also
Here´s the extent of mine that I learnt whilst working in Cairo :
Yulla...... hurry up
Yulla Yulla...... Hurry up a lot !
Yulla Yulla Habibi...... Hurry up a lot my friend.
Note: Don´t use Habibi in Saudi or other more "classical" arabic states as it means "Lover" and not "Friend".... could get you into a sticky situation (or not of course )
"Sabba Al kheir" ... good morning and replying to this welcome is "Sabba Al Noor"
Same thing with "Tisbah ala Kheir" and "Masa Al Kheir" etc.
Ana Scotlandi.... Englesi.... etc. etc..... I´m "Scottish" etc.
and my favourite which you will no doubt use more than any other phrase whilst walking the streets of Cairo....
F*ck off !!!!!
Honest..... You can learn "Le le shukran" and all the Aiwa´s you want... however.... if they´re starting to get annoying.... a good old "F*ck off" always works and offends them into submission
Hope this helps and enjoy.... Absolutely Love Cairo and the people are fantastic....
whoops.... missed the 2 most important and the most frequently used phrases you´ll hear !
Inchallah and Humdullah.
Not sure on the spelling however it basically means "If God wishes !" and "God be praised".... I think.
Anyway, these phrases are basically the Arabic "Manana" or "Oja La" and can be used to explain anything in Cairo, Egypt, life in general and the universe.
i.e. If the traffic is bad... if you´re late somewhere.... if the weathers bad.... If you chicken is five minutes late and cold etc. etc.
Remember them both as in reply to any question (within reason) you´re asked... you can always use them as legitimate replies
Hope this helps