A Brief List of ِArabic phrases I wish I knew before travelling to Palestine

to PalestineA Brief List of ِArabic phrases I wish I knew before travelling to Palestine: “Having not previously studied Arabic, I was informed that it would be wise to learn the arabic alphabet before travelling to Palestine. I abliged and, when I landed  in Tel Aviv, was feeling confident; I would come to my first Arabic lesson well prepaired to hit the ground running. Although this was true, I had forgot to think about my journey to the centre! The situation is improving, but currently most Palestinians you will meet on your journy to the centre, most importanty bus and taxi drivers, are likly to not speak much (if any )English. If had learned the handful of phrases listed in this artice before my trip, the whole experence of getting to the centre would have been much smoother – so please learn from my mistakes!” Ben from the UK remarked IMG_7509


Although you will hear many, these greetings are the most commonly used in Palestine.

English translation Transliteration Arabic Phrase
Hello / “peace be upon you”. As-salamu alaykum السلام عليكم
And peace be upon you (in reply)* wa ᶜalaykum issalām وعليكم السلام
Good morning/afternoon ṣabāḥ ilkhēr صباح الخير
Good morning/afternoon (in reply) ṣabāḥ innūr صباح النور
Good evening masā’ ilkhēr مساء الخير
Good evening (in reply) masā’ innūr مساء النور
How are you? kēf ḥālak (m) /ḥālik (f) كيف حالك؟
Im Good / Praise be to God ilḥamdillah الحمدلله

*In Arabic, phrases often have a common reply – it is worth being aware of these!


English translation Transliteration Arabic Phrase
Thank  You. shukran شكرا
Thank you (in reply) afwan عفوا

To find the price:

Useful when shopping or getting a taxi.

English translation Transliteration Arabic Phrase
How much?** adesh? اديش

 ** You can usually get by counting fingers in responce, or for a more formal purchace you could learn the arabic numbers


Useful when directing a taxi driver to your home or the centre

English translation Transliteration Arabic Phrase
to the right ila al-ya-meen إلى اليَمين
to the left ila al-ya-saar إلى اليَسار
Stop / This is my destination*** ya’tik el’afia يعطيك العافيه

*** A versitile phrase also used when:

  • calling a waitor
  • calling attention in the street