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As more and more foreign countries invest in the Arab World, it is becoming a hotspot for businesses and corporations. Your Arabic Courses in London teach you important business etiquettes which should be practiced when you are dealing with Arab business partners. Below are five tips which you should follow in order to avoid an uncomfortable situation when meeting your Arabic Business Partner:

Asking Too Many Personal Questions Such As About Family

When you meet your Arabic Business Partner, it is considered good manners to offer your Salam to the family and the kids when you meet them. As you might have learned in your Arabic Courses in London, Arab men are generally very reserved and don’t discuss private topics related to their spouses and their families. But as taught in your Arabic Courses in London, if you go too far asking too many questions about the wife and the family you might annoy your Arabic Business Partner. It is also advised for people not to comment on anybody’s wife since it is considered extremely insensitive and highly distasteful.

Religion and Politics are a Big NO for Conversation Topics

You might have learned in your Arabic Courses in London that conversation with your Arabic Business Partner can take a wrong turn if you talk about the two most controversial topics: religion and politics. It would be considered extremely tactless on your part if you start sprouting your opinion on topics that might turn your Arabic Business Partner sour. So put those Arabic Lessons in London to good use and keep the conversation as close to business as possible.

Offering Alcohol or Pork If Taking Out For Lunch

Deciding to take your Arabic Business Partner out for lunch can turn out to be a sticky situation if you are unaware of the basics of Muslim religion. If you plan to take your Arabic Business Partner out for lunch, as learned in your Arabic Classes in London, it is best to take him/her to some restaurant that serves Halal food. It throws a very positive light on you if you are careful of each and every small detail regarding Your Arabic Business Partner. Many Arabic, South Asian and Indian restaurants have now opened in the West, making it easier to take your Arab business partner to restaurants which serve Halal food and no alcohol.

Not Respecting Time of Prayer

Arabs stop everything at the time of prayer. As learned in your Arabic Classes in London respect your business partner’s religion and the customs associated with it and give him some time and separate space to pray. Even if they seem liberal and not as conservative as you thought they might be, still then it is best not to talk harshly about either their religion or even about yours. This will not just show sensitivity on your part but also put you in a good light and all those Arabic Classes that you took in London have finally come in handy.

 

Several foreigners mistake Arabic cuisine to be similar to Indian Cuisine and might find it difficult to consume as you observed in your Arabic Courses in London. However, it's nowhere near to Indian Cuisine. It has a flavour of its own which very few people like, that’s why you need an acquired taste for it. Putting those Arabic Courses in London to good use, you want your next dinner party to be a night that your guest would remember forever, then give an Arabic spin. Here are top five dishes to include in your next dinner party which will guarantee it a big hit:

Manakeesh

As learned in your Arabic Classes in London, if you have a desire for an eclectic appetizer, the Manakeesh is a winner. Who would have thought that besides the Italian Pizza, another version of Pizza would exist in the Gulf and the Middle East? The Manakeesh is ideal for breakfast and lunch and is made up of dough topped with different meats, herbs, and even cheese which is then baked. Fancy five star restaurants such as the Al Hallab in Dubai to street vendors all sell varieties of the Manakeesh.

Shish taouk

For the main course, the Shish taouk is the perfect dish to serve. Rich and filling, the Shish taouk is a favourite kebab dish in the Arab world. It is very similar to the Persian Jujeh Kabab just like you learned in your Arabic Lessons in London. The Shish Taouk is made with chicken which are cut into bite size cubes which are first marinated and then grilled. The chicken cubes can be marinated using two types: one with tomato paste and the other with the lemon juice mixed in yogurt. Pure garlic paste is served as a side to Shish Taouk. 

Halloumi

The Halloumi is the Arabic version of homemade cheese which is made from a mixture of sheep and goat’s milk but cow milk can also be used. It can be grilled and even fried. As taught in Arabic Courses in London, what makes Halloumi standout is that no bacteria or acid is part of its processing. A modern way of using Halloumi is to add it as a cheese to your chicken burger or serve it as fried or simply grilled that you can even take to your friends in your Arabic Classes in London!

Umm Ali Bread Pudding

This is one recipe that can be made at the last minute! Umm Ali meaning Ali's Mother is an Egyptian desert which is very similar to bread pudding. It is cooked in cream and condensed milk and raisins, nuts, pistachios with a drop of vanilla to enhance the taste is used. Croissant pieces are added to this mix that’s why it’s compared to a bread pudding. In the West, it’s served with a dollop of vanilla ice cream on top, even in your Arabic Lessons in London.

Knafeh

If you are thinking cheese cake but your theme’s Arabic, then the Knafeh is a desert that you should absolutely try! Knafeh is the Arabic version of the cheesecake in which the Nabusi Cheese is used. According to your Arabic Courses in London, the Nabusi Cheese is a common favourite in the regions of Syria, Palestine and Lebanon. Rose water and orange blossom water are added to give it rose-blush colour with the pastry soaked in sugar syrup. The Habibah Restaurant in Amman, Jordan serves some of the best Knafeh in the region.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015 09:19

Four Latest Arabic Movies to Watch

As many film festivals have started taking place in the Arabian Peninsula such as the Marrakech Festival in Morocco, it is a wonderful way for showcasing rare cinematic talent of the East. In addition to what you learned in your Arabic Courses in London; with the growth of various film industries in the Arabian Peninsula, there is now a vast variety of movies that you can choose from. Below are four movies that are a must watch for every movie lover:

The Movie from Tunisia: War Reporter

The ongoing war which is currently taking place in various parts of the world which are mostly inhabited by Muslims has a terrible effect on them. Living through a war is difficult but reporting it while keeping all your emotions intact is not an easy task and an equally daunting as you may have learned in your Arabic Courses in London. The movie War Reporter is simple with its editing, and does not glamorise the most gruesome job in the world: reporting deaths and watching men, women and children die in front of their eyes as the world of these unfortunate people collapses around them. 

 The Movie from Algeria: La Preuve (The Proof)

La Preuve has very sensibly handled an extremely sensitive matter which as you may have learned in your Arabic Lessons in London, that most Arabic men are private and very much reserved when it comes to their spouses. Ali belongs to the lower middle class and is a taxi driver by profession. He married Houria who is a widow and has two young daughters. But Ali’s desire to have his own children is tested when both are unable to conceive a baby. As you may have learned in your Arabic Lesson in London that fertility is not widely discussed in the Arab World. La Preuve explores the topic with much needed compassion. The message is how a man’s greatest weakness can become his own worst nightmare when his traditional father expects an heir. Moreover, would he ever have the courage to claim that he’s infertile to his own wife?

The Movie Fièvres (Fevers) from Morocco

As you may learned in your Arabic Classes in London that most Arabic families live together despite whatever the situation is. But this Moroccan production presents the tale of a teenager Ben whose childhood desire is to live with his father who soon finds that reality is very different from fiction.  As Ben makes a trip to his father, he finds out that his dad still lives with his parents and is completely different from what he envisaged about him. On the other hand, Karim has never been in the role of a father, so this unexpected situation of facing his adolescent son with a sharp mouth and a mind of his own is something that he’s completely unprepared for. Both father and son are a shock for each other and this is what makes it a gripping tale.  Fièvres is a movie of raw emotions and tempers gone wild when both father and son must face age old grievances and come to terms with reality.

The Movie Girafada from Palestine

Girafada is a story based on the real life situation in Israel. Like you learned in your Arabic Classes about the condition of the Palestinian children within Israeli borders, Girafada is a tale about the existence of humanity even when there’s a war going on. The last of Palestine’s existing zoos is owned by this veterinarian Yacine holding the zoo holds only pair of giraffes. After an attack on Palestine which ends up killing the male giraffe, the female giraffe is lost and lonely without her partner. Seeing the desolate condition of the female giraffe, Yacine and his son Ziad decide to get her a new partner. For that they must contact the only other zoo in the region and that’s in Tel-Aviv!

Wednesday, 08 July 2015 09:06

Learning Gulf Arabic - 10 common mistakes

When it comes to learning Arabic, you should consider that there are various different dialects it evolves around. Trying to pick a dialect can not only be frustrating but confusing also. Many times, Arabic tutors will emphasise that Arabic is Arabic and it is important to pay attention to the accent and the words spoken in that area. When foreigners consider learning Arabic, they are put off due to the reason that there are various dialects present.

What's the point in learning Arabic when, you visit Egypt they will not understand Gulf Arabic and when you visit UAE they won't understand anything else apart from Gulf Arabic. Many foreigners find it alarming the extent at which the dialects vary and how they cannot be understood by locals residing in different Arab countries. Apart from Gulf Arabic there are other dialects such as Egyptian Arabic, Modern Standard Arabic, Iraqi Arabic, Levantine Arabic and many more. There are 5 common problems faced while learning Gulf Arabic, they are as follows:

1. Struggling with new pronunciations

Arabic is substantially different from English and because it is a semantic language which is written from right to left, it can be quiet challenging at times to learn Arabic syllables such as ح Ha, عAin, ص Sad and غGayn etc. But by taking Arabic classes in London our tutors will provide a supportive approach in learning Arabic.

2. Little time spent on vocabulary to construct long text or dialogues.

Like all languages, Arabic also requires patience and endurance in order to master the language. It is important to spend sufficient time on vocabulary that can be used in real life so as to help you construct longer text and dialogue.

3. Arabic words which have less significance to your own personal, academic, professional or religious needs.

Focusing on specific and important words and phrases in Arabic is crucial especially when they are connected to your specific interest. If you try to learn everything in Arabic which not necessarily is connected to your specific needs can become frustrating and monotonous.

4. Learning long passages which have no relevance to your interests and needs.

If you are learning Arabic because you want to spend your summer vacations in the Middle East then reading a newspaper in Arabic which only talks about current affairs might not be beneficial while learning the language. Try to pick sources that are relevant to your interests and focus on those which will not only make learning Arabic fun but also interesting.

5. Trying to learn Arabic from an authentic source.

Most of the time learning Gulf Arabic can be difficult if you cannot find a reliable source. Picking someone who is willing to help you and has sufficient time to spend teaching you Gulf Arabic can be difficult.

This is why at londonarabicdriect.com we provide comprehensive Gulf Arabic courses which you can take if you are interested in mastering your language skills in the specific area. By taking Arabic courses in London you will be able to obtain a better understanding of Gulf Arabic.

Weddings are a joyous occasion where everyone is being geared up to look their best by trying out new diets, shopping for a new dress or suit and planning for an once-in-a-lifetime event. Weddings can also be a chaotic affair and it is best not to get in the way of the bridezilla or else you will be unable to free yourself from her wrath. Sometimes you might go overboard with your best friend's wedding not keeping in mind that it isn't actually your important day. If you want to learn more about Arabic weddings, you can join Arabic classes in London. Here are 7 things to avoid while attending or planning an Arabic Wedding for your Arab friend:

1. Never Wear a White Dress

If you didn't know, that the Arab bride dresses are very similar to the British bride, well you know it now. During Arabic classes in London, you can ask your instructor to give you more information about the dress code worn in Arabic weddings. Several Arab brides opt for white, detailed and flowing dresses, which are accompanied with delicate veils. You don't want to spoil her most awaited and important day by wearing a similar white gown. It is considered as an unspoken oath amongst several Arab females that the white dress is sacred for every bride on her wedding day. Despite this if you wish wear a white dress; try to wear a less big one.

2. Don't Tell the Bride's Elder Sister 3o2balek

To avoid any ill feelings during the wedding occasion, refrain from commenting about the bride's older sister. She might already be in considerable agony watching her younger sister get married off while she waits on her single status. Try to avoid such sensitive matters and walk away by sharing an awkward joke.

3. Don't Tell an Arab Bride to Relax on Her Wedding Night

This for some Arab females is a no-go area because usually the much elderly females of the family perform such talks. Because Arabs avoid having relationships before marriage as per their religion, they might not have much experience in that certain area. However, try not to impart your knowledge with your Arab friend and let her mother or the elderly females take care of it.

4. Don't Drink Sharbat or Drinks Next to a Bride

Alcohol is rarely served at Arab weddings, as you would know while taking Arabic classes in London, however they have an array of 'sherbets' that come in different colours and tastes. However, avoid drinking any such coloured drinks next to the bride because unpredictable incidents can take place. There might be some naughty children playing around which might result in you tipping your glass of sherbet on the bride's dress.

5. Never Ask the Bride for a Dance if You Don't Know Her Husband

Although every aspect of the Arab wedding is similar to a British wedding, there are certain limits. Especially when it comes to asking the bride for a dance. You can learn such important etiquettes during your Arabic lessons in London. Guys who aren't well acquainted with the bride's husband should not ask the bride for a dance. Arab men are most unlikely going to tolerate or accept their wife dancing with an ex-boyfriend or a work colleague.

6. Don't Cramp the Belly Dancer's Personal Space

Belly Dancing is one of the limelights for several Arabic Weddings, although it is a form of entertainment, main at times men will get over-excited and start dancing with the belly dancer only to cramp her personal space. Avoiding doing so and taking videos or pictures from your camera as this will make you look desperate.

7. Don't Kiss the Bride on Her Cheeks

The bride spends thousands to get the perfect skin tone and make up for her most important and memorable day of her life. So imagine how she would feel if you came and innocently kissed her on her cheeks leaving your lip stain on her cheeks. Therefore, it is best to wish her by simply hugging or shaking her hand.

You can share your memorable experiences with fellow students who are learning Arabic in Arabic lessons in London. 

Similar to learning other languages, Arabic also requires a form of discipline and dedication when you consider exploring its realms. Learning Arabic can be intimidating at first but with proper methodology and commitment, you can succeed in learning the language in no time. By taking Arabic courses in London, they can help you learn the language quickly. There are certain considerations to think about when it comes to learning Arabic and they have been listed below:

Where do I start?                                                            

It really depends on you. To what extent do you want to learn the language and how is it going to help you. What are your goals and what do you plan to achieve after mastering written and verbal skills in the language. For instance, a boxer will perform a boxing routine to help him win the fight and a runner will run laps in order to win the race. It is unthinkable to consider that the runner will perform a boxing routine in order to win a running race, since the boxing routine is completely different compared to a running routine. So keeping this point of view while learning Arabic will help you determine what you are trying to achieve with this language.

Different people from varied backgrounds have specific reasons for learning Arabic. There are many Muslims who aren't well-versed in Arabic and need to learn the language for a better understanding of their religion and text in which their Holy Book has been written in. On the other hand, many non-Muslims have gained an interest in learning the language for various reasons from helping to communicate while they are vacationing in Middle Eastern countries to conducting business relations with Arab delegates or Arab companies.

Whatever your reason is for learning the language or no matter which background you come from, it is important to establish the level of Arabic you are willing to learn and then target learning it accordingly. You might want to think about the following aspects while preparing to learn the language:

  • While learning the language there is no one single book to refer. Learning from a number of sources will help you learn Arabic quickly. By taking classes in London for Arabic will substantially help you while you journey through learning Arabic.
  • Non-Arabs have been learning Arabic for over 1,400 years across various regions so it is wrong to believe that foreigners are incapable of learning the language.
  • Refer back to the traditional methods of learning Arabic since it is the tried and true way of learning it through the implementation of complex systems and tests.
  • Learning all facets of the language instead of focusing on just one element will not only impede your learning process but will make it difficult and frustrating. 

How do I start?

Since Arabic is the 5th most common and spoken language in the world, there is an increasing need for learning solutions and applications for people to assist and guide them through their learning process of the language. From online courses to mobile applications, there are many more sources which foreigners can focus on while supporting their learning experience of Arabic.

We at londonarabicdirect.com provide a comprehensive approach to learning Arabic through our Arabic courses in London. Our teachers provide a step-by-step guide to learning Arabic making it an interesting and long-lasting experience for students. By enrolling in one of our Arabic lessons in London you will be able to view a completely different perspective about the Arab culture and its language. Now you can rest assured because we provide a supportive approach when it comes learning Arabic. 


When learning a new language, it is important to go about it the right way. Whether you are going to an Arab speaking country or dealing with a client who speaks Arabic, it is always good to know some basic words and phrases. Knowing these words and phrases keep the conversation going and helps to put the person you are talking to at ease.

We have compiled the most commonly used words and phrases that can be used in everyday life. They have been divided into sections to make them easy to understand and remember.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015 08:21

Celebrities Love Arabic Also!

As many boundaries are being explored for business and leisure activities, Middle Eastern countries as well as the Gulf countries are inviting a number of foreign business conglomerates and Western Musicians to conduct business deals and perform live concerts in their countries. These tactics not only enhance the country's economic growth but also attracts massive number of tourists who flock to these concerts which ultimately leads to increased tourism and business activity in the region. Apart from this increasing trend to facilitate business and leisure activities, many popular celebrities are seen to be adorning themselves with Arabic tattoos, enjoying Arabic cuisines and travelling to Gulf countries such as UAE which boast fast-pace lifestyle and state-of-the-art contemporary architecture.

 

Interested in taking Arabic lessons in London? Whether you are going on a trip to the UAE or just meaning to impress your girlfriend by taking her to a fancy Arabic restaurant, how impressive would it be to have good background knowledge about the Arab culture and traditions beforehand? The most important part of Arab culture is, without any surprises, their hospitality. The Arab culture is extremely diverse and has been affected by several other countries and their traditions, such as, Turkey and Egypt. Arab cuisines and recipes commonly circle around particular ingredients such as wheat, chick peas, and meat.

Friday, 12 June 2015 09:42

Fun Facts About The Arabic Culture

Many foreigners aren't aware about the rich Arabic culture and language. They are misguided by the stereotypical characteristics of Arabs portrayed by the media and news. However, once you decide to take Arabic classes in London, we at londonarabicdirect.com will open doors to the Arabic culture, music, food, language and many more. By taking Arabic classes in London you will be able to obtain a whole new perspective about the language and its roots. Here we have compiled a list of fun facts about the language, its music, food, dress code and many more.

Food:

Arabic Food is one of the most diverse and scrumptious cuisines of the world. Arabic cuisine is influenced by a number of neighbouring Mediterranean countries which has created a delectable palette of mouth-watering dishes. The use of rich ingredients such as olives, cheese, dry fruits such as dates, cashew nuts and pine nuts in Arabic dishes is prominent and creates the succulent taste that endows each dish. Some very popular dishes include HummusMutabbalFelafelsKhubus and Baba Ghanush, all very famous flavoursome appetizers. Main dishes encompass Shawarma, a range of juicy Kebabs and rice casseroles. Arabs are keen eaters of greens and believe in having a balanced diet of salad with lamb and chicken dishes. Most of their salads are in the form of Tabouleh which is very similar to the Greek salad. Deserts range from BakhlawaKenafa and Umm Ali.

Clothes:

Many Arab countries follow a varied Arab culture whereas in many Gulf countries, men are seen to be wearing white, one-piece cotton garment called dishdasha or thobe accompanied with a head cover called ghutra or smagh. On the other hand women are seen wearing a one-piece dress called an abaya which is also accompanied with a headscarf called the hijab. Other Middle Eastern countries might be less orthodox in comparison to Gulf countries, such as in Egypt you will find people wearing western clothes without any head coverings because not all of them are Muslims and come from different religious backgrounds.

Music and Dance:

A very popular form of dance observed in Arab culture is the belly dancing. It is basically performed by Arab women who master the movements of shoulders, belly and hips. Women adorn themselves with specific costumes and belly chains to make their movements invigorating for the dance. Nowadays we see this form of dance in many exercise routines and weight loss programs. More and more people are taking classes for belly dancing to decrease substantial weight. Arabic music on other hand is melodious because they use different musical instruments which are unknown to the Western world. These instruments make a harmonious melody for songs which showcase the Arab pop culture. Popular instruments include the oud, qanun, buzuq and the riq. 

Art, Culture and Values

Islamic art usually comprises of paintings on Arabic calligraphy. Intricate and detailed brush strokes create a symphony of colours and blends, which provide the painting its overall magnificent look. Islamic art creates an instant captivating visual impact and provides an aesthetic appeal which promotes the differences between language, culture and creed. There is a clear distinction between modern art and pre-Islamic art but both boast an impressive visual of colour blending, brush strokes and fine lines.

Arab culture denotes most of the aspects for Arabs in the Middle Eastern countries. Arabs are known to be God-fearing people and include religious aspects in their daily lives and values. Foreigners are requested to respect these values while visiting an Arab household as they might be offended if you don't follow their norms while being in their environment. Apart from this Arabs are known to be hospitable and warm people who feel honoured when foreigners pays a visit to them.

By taking Arabic courses in London you will be able to understand all these aspects that surround the Arab culture and their language. We at londonarabicdirect.com try to teach you more than just the language; we strive to provide you information about their culture, religion, norms, beliefs and values.  

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