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Don’t we all agree that the word love conveys a strong feeling of deep affection? The same applies to the Arabic culture and language. I love you in Arabic can be said on numerous occasions to your beloved ones. Learn below the most common expressions in accordance to gender.

I Love You in Arabic

There are different ways to say I love you in Arabic. Which way to choose largely depends on the relationship you have with the addressee. The most straightforward way of expressing love to your partner, a family member or very close friend is by saying ana bahebak (to a man) or ana bahebek (to a woman), both spelled انا بحبك in Arabic. This is the most literal translation and also the most common way of saying I love you in many Arabic countries, including most parts of the Middle East.

Another way of saying I love you in Arabic is ana bamout feek انا بموت فيك (to a man) or ana bamout feeki (to a woman) انا بموت فيكي. This expression translates as “I’m dying for you”, and is a way of conveying strong love.

Habibi

If you have Arabic friends or family, or regularly enjoy Arabic music or movies, chances are high that you have heard the word habibi before.

The word habibi (حبيبي) is associated with warm feelings and love. It deviates from the word habib (lovely), ending with -i (for “my”), literally meaning “my lovely”. The English equivalent would be darling.

Note that habibi (حبيبي) is used when speaking to a man. The female equivalent is habibti (حبيبتي).

In many Arabic countries, you’ll hear the word habibi in all kinds of situations in daily life. Does that mean that we love everyone? Well, not really. The word habibi is part of our culture. It can be said to family and friends, but surprisingly even to a stranger you’ve had a small conversation with on your way to the grocery shop. You can even say it to the cashier after buying your groceries.

While it can be considered odd or even offensive in some cultures to call someone you don’t know well habibi, it’s totally fine in the Jordanian culture to do so. While there are (almost) no faux pas between friends and family members when it comes to expressing love, please be aware that saying habibi or I love you in Arabic is only respectul between two strangers when they are of the same gender.

Next time your Arabic friend/partner hands you over something, try saying yeslamou habibi يسلموا حبيبي , meaning thanks my love.

Expressions at a Glance

Below is a summary of the expressions used in this article and their English equivalent. The Latin script can help you with the correct pronunciation of you can’t read Arabic.

English EquivalentArabic (Latin Script)Arabic (Arabic Script)
I love you (to a man)ana bahebakانا بحبك
I love you (to a woman)ana bahebehانا بحبك
I’m dying for you (to a man)ana bamout feekانا بموت فيك
I’m dying for you (to a woman)ana bamout feekiانا بموت فيكي
Darling (to a man)habibiحبيبي
Darling (to a woman)habibtiحبيبتي
Thanks my loveyeslamou habibiيسلموا حبيبي

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