Iran Travel Tips 08 Mar 2024 BY Maryam Mahmoudian

Most Common Farsi Phrases for Tourists in Iran

Iran, a land steeped in ancient history, vibrant culture, and warm hospitality, beckons travelers with its captivating charm. From the majestic ruins of Persepolis to the bustling bazaars of Isfahan, every corner of this captivating country offers a unique and unforgettable experience.

However, venturing beyond the familiar can be even more rewarding. Learning a few basic Farsi phrases will not only enhance your travel experience but also open doors to a deeper connection with the local people and their culture. This guide, designed specifically for tourists, aims to equip you with essential Farsi phrases for tourists in Iran, categorized into key areas that will be invaluable throughout your journey.

We want to show you the beauty of Farsi, helping travelers with a language guide to explore Iran. This isn't just about talking—it's about feeling a connection. As you start your journey in Iran, let Farsi be your guide, opening doors to hospitality, understanding, and a deep dive into the heart of this amazing country.


The Basics of Farsi

The Basics of Farsi

Farsi, also known as Persian, carries a historical legacy that spans millennia. Its roots can be traced back to the Achaemenid Empire, where Old Persian served as the administrative language. Over time, it evolved, influenced by various linguistic elements, including Arabic, Turkic, and Mongolic. The script underwent transformations, ultimately adopting the elegant Persian script we recognize today.

Beyond its administrative role, Farsi flourished in the realms of literature, poetry, and art during the Islamic Golden Age. The renowned Persian poets, such as Rumi and Hafez, crafted verses that transcended time, shaping the cultural and linguistic identity of the Persian-speaking world.


Essential Farsi Pronunciation

Farsi pronunciation, while graceful and melodic, introduces learners to a set of sounds that may differ from those found in English. Familiarizing yourself with these common sounds lays the foundation for effective communication.

  1. Guttural Sounds: Farsi incorporates guttural sounds, represented by letters such as ق (q) and غ (gh). These sounds emanate from the back of the throat, adding a distinctive quality to words. Practice these sounds to convey authenticity in your spoken Farsi.
  2. Vowel Harmony: Farsi exhibits vowel harmony, where vowels in a word harmonize to create a unified sound. Pay attention to vowel lengths and tones, as they contribute to the rhythm and beauty of the language.
  3. Consonant Clusters: Unlike English, Farsi often features consonant clusters. Practice articulating these clusters, like those found in words such as " دستکش (dastkesh) " In this word, the consonant cluster is formed by the combination of "st" in the middle. Practice saying "dastkesh" with emphasis on smoothly pronouncing the "st" cluster to improve your articulation of Farsi consonant clusters.


Common Farsi Phrases for Greetings and Pleasantries

Common Farsi Phrases for Greetings and Pleasantries

The warmth and hospitality of the Iranian people are renowned around the world, and the foundation for this connection lies in your first interaction. Learning basic greetings and pleasantries in Farsi demonstrates respect, fosters goodwill, and creates a more meaningful experience for you and the locals.



  1. Salam (سلام): This versatile word simply translates to "hello" and is suitable for most situations.
  2. Khoda Hafez (خداحافظ): This translates to "goodbye" and is a common way to bid farewell.
  3. Sobh Bekheyr (صبح بخیر): Used specifically for good morning, adding a touch of warmth to your early interactions.
  4. Shab Bekheyr (شب بخیر): Similarly, this translates to "good night" and is a polite way to end your day.



  1. Esme man [Your Name] hast (اسم من [Your Name] است): This simply introduces yourself as "[Your Name]".
  2. Esme shoma chie? (اسمه شما چیه؟): This asks "What is your name?" allowing you to reciprocate the introduction.


Expressions of Gratitude:

  1. Mamnoon (ممنون): This translates to "thank you" and is frequently used in everyday conversation.
  2. Kheyli mamnoon (خیلی ممنون): This translates to "thank you very much" and expresses deeper appreciation.
  3. ** Khâhesh mikonam (خواهش میکنم):** While not directly "you're welcome," this expresses your welcome and is used in similar situations. It is mostly used when someone says “Thank you” or “Mamnoon (ممنون)” to you.
  4. Bebakhshid (ببخشید): This translates to " Excuse Me" or "I'm Sorry" and is a versatile phrase that embodies both politeness and humility. If you accidentally bump into someone or need to grab someone's attention, a simple "Bebakhshid" will suffice. In instances of genuine apology, it also serves as a polite acknowledgment of wrongdoing.

By incorporating these simple phrases into your interactions, you'll be well on your way to building rapport with the Iranian people and creating lasting memories throughout your travels.


Essential Persian Phrases for Getting Around

Essential Persian Phrases for Getting Around

Exploring Iran's vibrant cities, historical landmarks, and breathtaking landscapes requires efficient navigation. Mastering these key phrases will ensure you reach your desired destinations with ease and confidence.



  1. Koja hast? (کجاست؟): This simply translates to "Where is it?" and can be used to ask for the location of specific places; "Koja ATM hast?" - Where is the ATM? Or "Toilet koja ast?" - Where is the restroom?.
  2. Chel jore beram be [Place name]? (چطور برم به [Place name]؟): This translates to "How can I get to [Place name]?" and helps you find directions to your desired location.
  3. Rast (راست): This means "right" and can be helpful when navigating streets and understanding directions.
  4. Chap (چپ): This translates to "left" and is another helpful tool for understanding and following directions.
  5. Man gom shodam (من گم شدم) - I am lost: Finding yourself disoriented is a common part of exploring new places. "Man gom shodam" enables you to seek assistance and ask for directions when you find yourself lost or confused.



  1. Taxi (تاکسی): This simply means "taxi" and allows you to identify and hail a taxi.
  2. Metro (مترو): This translates to "metro" and helps you navigate the subway system efficiently.
  3. Autobus (اتوبوس): This simply means "bus" and helps you identify and use buses for public transportation.
  4. Lotfan negah darid (نگه دارید لطفا)- Please stop
  5. Inja/ Anja boro (اینجا/ آنجا برو)- Go there
  6. Inja/ Anja piadeh misham (اینجا/ آنجا پیاده میشم)- I get off here/ there


Numbers in Persian

Numbers in Persian

Understanding basic numbers (1-10) in Farsi can be extremely beneficial in various situations, including bargaining at local markets, understanding prices, and navigating street addresses. Here's a quick reference:

  1. Yek (یک)- 1
  2. Do (دو)- 2
  3. Se (سه)- 3
  4. Chahar (چهار)- 4
  5. Panj (پنج)- 5
  6. Shish (شش)- 6
  7. Haft (هفت)- 7
  8. Hasht (هشت)- 8
  9. Noh (نه)- 9
  10. Dah (ده)- 10


Common Farsi Phrases for Shopping and Bargaining

Common Farsi Phrases for Shopping and Bargaining

Iran boasts a rich bazaar culture, filled with vibrant textiles, handcrafted souvenirs, and local delicacies. Engaging in this cultural experience can be even more rewarding when equipped with essential Farsi phrases for shopping and navigating the art of bargaining.

  1. Gheymate in cheghadr mishe? (قیمت این چقدر میشه؟): This translates to "How much is this?", allowing you to inquire about the price of an item.
  2. Ino/ Ouno mikham (اینو/ اونو میخوام): This translates to "I want this/ that", when pointing to the item you want to buy.
  3. Geraan/ Geroon (گران/ گرون): This means "expensive" and helps you express your initial assessment of the price.
  4. Arzan (ارزان): This translates to "cheap" and can be used as a reference point during negotiations.
  5. Mishe takhfif bedid (میشه تخفیف بدید): This politely asks "Can you give a discount?" and initiates the bargaining process.



While the official currency of Iran is the Rial (ریال), locals often use the term Toman (تومان) in everyday conversation. It's important to understand that one Toman is equivalent to ten Rials.

Therefore, when you hear prices quoted in Tomans, simply move the decimal point one place to the left to convert them to Rials for transactions. For example, if a vendor tells you something costs "100 Toman," you would pay 1,000 Rials.


Farsi Phrases for Food and Dining in Iran

Farsi Phrases for Food and Dining in Iran

Whether you're exploring bustling street food stalls or indulging in a traditional restaurant setting, knowing a few essential Farsi phrases can significantly enhance your dining experience.

Familiarize yourself with some popular Iranian dishes like Chelo Kebab (چلو کباب) (grilled meat with rice), Dizi (دیزی) (stew), Ash Reshteh (آش رشته) (noodle soup), and Tahdig (ته دیگ) (crispy rice crust). This will help you navigate menus and identify dishes that pique your interest.

For vegetarians, communicating dietary restrictions is crucial. "Man vegetarian hastam" (من وجترین هستم) translates to "I am vegetarian," while "Ghoosht" (گوشت) means "meat" and "Morgh" (مرغ) means "chicken" for reference.

To order food, politely say "Lotfan [Dish name] mishe bidin be man" (لطفاً [نام غذا] میشه بدین به من) which translates to "Please give me [Dish name]."

And if you have allergies or specific needs you can use:

  1. Man be [Food name] alergi daram (من به [نام غذا] آلرژی دارم), which translates to "I am allergic to [Food name]"
  2. Bedoon-e [Food name] (بدون [نام غذا]) , which translates to " without [Food name]". For example, "Bedoon-e sirkeh" (Without vinegar)


Persian Phrases for Emergency Situations

Persian Phrases for Emergency Situations

Emergencies can arise unexpectedly, and having the ability to seek assistance promptly is paramount. In Iran, where hospitality extends to every aspect of life, these phrases ensure you can reach out for help when needed.

  1. "Komak!" - Help!: In urgent situations, a powerful and straightforward plea for assistance is encapsulated in "Komak!" This concise expression conveys the urgency of the situation and is likely to prompt swift responses from those nearby.
  2. "Be police begoo/ zang bezan" - Call the police: When faced with situations requiring law enforcement, "Be police begoo/ zang bezan" is your call for summoning assistance from the police. Whether it's a serious incident or a concerning circumstance, this phrase ensures appropriate authorities are notified.
  3. "Daroo mikhaham" - I need medicine: It allows you to convey this necessity clearly, facilitating a swift response from those around you. Follow this phrase with the specific type of medicine you require or describe your symptoms for better assistance. For instance, "Daroo mikhaham, sardard daram" (I need medicine; I have a headache).
  4. "Bimarestan koja ast?" - Where is the hospital?: When faced with a medical emergency, finding the nearest hospital is a priority. "Bimarestan koja ast?" enables you to ask for directions to the hospital, ensuring timely access to medical care.


Cultural Farsi Phrases

Cultural Farsi Phrases

Engaging with the local culture is a transformative aspect of travel, and expressing genuine interest fosters connections with the people you meet. These cultural phrases allow you to share your appreciation for the rich tapestry of Iranian heritage.


"Fekr mikonam Irani-ha jaleb hastand" - I think Iranians are interesting

Acknowledging the captivating allure of Iranian culture, "Fekr mikonam Irani-ha jaleb hastand" conveys your admiration for the uniqueness and charm of the Iranian people. Share this phrase when discussing cultural observations, traditions, or when expressing your positive impressions of interactions with locals.


"Che ghadr farhang Irani ra doost daram" - I love Iranian culture

Expressing love for the profound and diverse aspects of Iranian culture is encapsulated in "Che ghadr farhang Irani ra doost daram." This phrase communicates a deep appreciation for the traditions, arts, and history of Iranian society. Share this sentiment when engaged in conversations about culture, art, or whenever you wish to express your affection for the cultural richness of Iran.


Tips for Learning Common Farsi phrases

  1. Familiarize yourself with Farsi sounds through language apps, local conversations, or cultural events.
  2. Imitate native pronunciation to develop an ear for the language's musicality.
  3. Start with basic greetings like "Salam" (hello) and "Khodaa haafez" (goodbye).
  4. Pay attention to tone variations, crucial for conveying warmth and politeness.
  5. Engage with locals to refine your pronunciation in real-life situations.
  6. Initiate conversations without hesitation and welcome corrections with openness.
  7. Join local classes or hire a tutor for personalized guidance.
  8. Record yourself speaking Farsi to identify areas for improvement.


Final Takeaway

This guide has equipped you with common Farsi phrases for tourists in Iran, the essential vocabulary for greetings, directions, dining, bargaining, and seeking help. Remember, mastering these phrases takes practice, so don't be afraid! Start the learning process and have fun with it!

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