Whether you’ve been in Saudi a long time or you’re a relative newbie, you’ve probably noticed that we’ve developed our own Expat language. Unfortunately, due to our 26 letter English alphabet, many of our sounds and letters do not feature on the Arabic alphabet – so we’ve kind of just ran with it. It should be said, however, that there are many ways to pronounce these words – depending on your accent and where you’re from, but here is a list of the faux pas we tend to make on the regions commonly used phrases.
Commonly pronounced as Hmm-us.
Properly pronounced as Hoo-moss.
This one is a little tricky as it depends where you’re from, the H is more Kh and the OO is more Ogh. Get it?
Commonly pronounced as Ta-boo-lee
Properly pronounced as Ta-boo-leh
Like meh. Which is perfect because that’s what life is without tabouleh.
Commonly pronounced as Do-nur
Properly pronounced as Don-na
(Not technically an Arabic word) But we’d probably recommend not going into a kebab shop asking for a donor.
Commonly pronounced as Muz-lim
Properly pronounced as Mooss-lim
Of course this depends on what news organisation you work for…
5. Khalli Walli
Commonly pronounced as Ka-lee wa-lee Properly pronounced as Hha-lee wa-lee Or just say it however you like, khalli walli.
Commonly pronounced as cream
Properly pronounced as Ca-Ree-m
For all those weird looks you get when you tell your friends you’re bringing cream to a party.
Commonly pronounced as Ya-ya
Properly pronounced as Yah-hee-ya
Mesa Yaya Binks?
Commonly pronounced as Shay-dee
Properly pronounced as Sha-dee
Will the real Slim Shadi please stand up?