Phrase: How Are You? (كيفك)

Spending time asking how a friend is doing, and finding out what is new in their life is an important part of Arabic culture. Slow down and chat before you get down to business.

In Modern Standard Arabic it would be written and pronunced as follows [Reference]:

How كَيْفَ Kayfa condition (your)? حَالُكِ؟ haluki?

How كَيْفَ Kayfa condition (your)? حَالُكَ؟ haluka?

In spoken Levantine Arabic you would say it this way:

How كيف Keef condition (your)? حالك؟ hal-ik?

How كيف Keef condition (your)? حالك؟ hal-ak?

Note here a pattern, ik and ak are singular possesive pronoun suffixes. There is a great deal more to learn about possesive pronouns in Arabic which I will try and cover in a later post.

Finally, you will often here a more informal, shortened version of this question, “How are you?”, which is pronounced as a single word:

How you? كيفك keef-ik

How you? كيفك keef-ak