An increasing amount of people take language lessons in a foreign tongue ahead of their precious holiday at night school, usually in Spanish, Italian and French.

big pyramid in egypt

You probably wont need to ask for directions to the Pyramids!

However, as the likes of Sharm el Sheikh, Hurgada and Nile Cruises are becoming more popular given the great range of deals on holidays to Egypt, I thought it would be an interesting to suggest some phrases to use whilst visiting Egypt as a tourist.

Here are some basic words and phrases to help you to converse in Egyptian Arabic whilst on holiday in Egypt. The likelihood is that locals will reply in English but at least you have had a go! It’s better to have a go and get it wrong rather than to not even try!

Egyptian Language Basics
Hello/Peace be with you (greeting) – assalamu aleikum
And also with you (the reply to above) – Wa alekum es salam
My name is….. – Ismi…..
Goodbye – Maasalama or Salam
Thank you – Shukran
No thank you – La Shukran
You’re Welcome – Ahlan wa sahlan
Yes – Aywa
No – La
Please – Min Fadlack

talk like an egyptian

As Bananarama once said: Talk Like an Egyptian

Getting to Know People

How Are You? Ez zayyak?
What Is Your Name? Esmak eh?
How old are you? Kam Omrak?
Where do you work? Ayn Taamal?
Do you have children? Hal ladyek atfal?
Where does your family live? Ayn Taskon Aelatak?

And if you’re getting on really well with a local resident:
I Love You! Ana ohebak!

Some other useful miscellaneous bits!
How much is this? – bekam de ?
God Willing – In Shalla
How can i go to/reach ….? – ezay arouh ……?
May I have a glass of _____? – Momken Kaset___
Water – maa’
beer – beerah
red/white wine – nabeed ahmar/abyad

And the all importan tphrase if Tutankhamen’s Curse strikes!
Where is the toilet?! – Ayn al-Hammaam!?

You could impress your mates too by counting to 10 in Egypt? (this is purely for showing off I guess!)
1 waaHid
2 ithnaan
3 thalaatha
4 arba`a
5 khamsa
6 sitta
7 sab`a
8 thamaaniya
9 tis`a
10 ashara

Does any one know any cool, hip and happening Egyptian street slang I could add to this list?!