Most Important Phrases in Moroccan Arabic


Only a few months left till the Moroccan Escapade, so it’s about time to brush up on your Moroccan Arabic, also called Darija. It differs significantly from Modern Standard Arabic, even more than most other Arabic dialects, thanks to the big influence of the Berber languages, some Latin as well as French and Spanish. That’s why we’ve put together the most important phrases in Moroccan Arabic for you. 

If you get your vocabulary from a phrasebook for Modern Standard Arabic, people will most likely understand you, but you won’t get a word they say. Modern Standard Arabic is  a language that is basically only used in very formal situations and in books, newspapers and administration, but which is hardly ever spoken in daily life.

Moroccan Darija on the other side is spoken as first language by about 50% 75% of Morocco’s population. The other ones call one of the Berber languages (Tamazight languages) their mother tongue, but many also speak some basic Darija. So you’ll have a pretty decent chance to be understood with our important phrases in Moroccan Arabic.

Some Basic Politeness

Because a little bit of politeness can get you quite far.

Moroccan Escapade
Image: Travel Scientists


Hello – salaam or salaam alaikum – Literally: Peace or peace be upon you – a common greeting

Good morning -sabah al khair –  kh being the German hissing sound made at the back of your throat – like in Bach

Reply to good morning – sabah al noor   (literally: morning of light)

Good evening –  massa al khair – kh being the German hissing sound made at the back of your throat – like in Bach

Reply to good eveningmassa al noor – reply to good evening (literally: evening of light)

Goodbye – bs-lama

Thank you (very much) – shoukran (bezaf)

Please – afek

Yes – ah/na’am

No – la

No, thank you – la shoukran

How are you? – labass

Reply to labass, literally sth. along the lines of “it’s going good, thank god” – hamdoulillah

I am sorry – smeh-lia

No problem – meshi mushkil

Do you speak English? – katehdr belinglizya?

A Visit to the Market

Because shopping is fun.

phrases moroccan arabic
Image: Travel Scientists


How much is it? beshhal hadīk?

It is too expensive!ghali bezaf!

I’m just looking around.ghir tan chouf

Finding Your Way

Because you WILL get lost.

phrases moroccan arabic
Image: Travel Scientists


Straight  – nichan

Left – lissar

Right limeen





Where is …?  – fayne ? 

How can I get to …? –  kif nemchi li… ?

I’m lostjlit rassi

Some Things Food

Because food is life.

Moroccan Escapade
Image: Travel Scientists


Vegetable taginetagine b khodra

Beef taginetagine b lhem

Chicken taginetagine b djaj


Coffee (with sugar / milk)kahwa (b skar / b hlib)

Tea (without sugar)atay (bla skar)

Orange juiceasir limun

Bon appetit /Have a nice mealbsseha

It was delicious – lay i atik saha !

Last But Not Least

Inshallah – You can say inshallah pretty much whenever you like, especially when you don’t want to commit to sth, and you will hear it a lot. Literally: “If God wills”



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