How to make a small talk in Arabic

Having a short conversation in Arabic is exactly the same as in English. Talk about familiar topics like jobs, sports, and kids – just say it in Arabic! Small talk describes brief conversations you have with people you don’t know well. Small talk is where friendships are made. If you know how to have a short conversation in Arabic, you will be able to “break the deadlock” and get to know some of the people you meet during your trip.
Small talk generally consists of greetings, introductions, and descriptions of personal information and interests. If you are able to keep on your own in each of these areas, you will be able to handle most small conversation situations.

Greetings and introductions
Although people in Arabic-speaking countries are often more formal than those in the United States, there is no need to wait to get to know someone. Go to someone and say hi (ahlan) or (marHaban).
As you’d expect, it’s considered polite to greet the people you meet, whether you know them well or not. In fact, when greeting a group of people, it is very polite to greet each individual in the group individually. However, due to the conservative nature in many Arabic-speaking countries, it is considered rude for men and women to greet each other in public.

ismii . . . (My name is . . .)
ismuhu ahmad. (His name is Ahmad.)
ismuhaa layla. (Her name is Layla.)
maa ismuka? (What is your name? [masculine] [literally: “What is your noble name?”])
maa ismuki? (What is your name? [feminine])
In Arabic, as in English, the question “How are you?” (kayf Haalak?) usually comes up after a greeting. If someone asks you how you’re doing, you should respond with the formulaic response “Fine, praise God” (bi-khayr, al-Hamdu lillah) rather than a detailed inventory of your condition.
People in the Middle East tend to stand closer to each other during conversations than Westerners are used to. Try to resist the temptation to step back to increase your personal space. It is considered rude.
Personal information
After the necessary introductions, making small talk is really just a question of talking about yourself and asking the other person questions about themselves. The following phrases will come in handy when you’re chitchatting with someone new.
anaa min. . . (I am from . . .)
anta min ayna?/anti min ayna? (Where are you from? [M/F])
maa waDHiifatuka? (What is your profession?)
ayna taskun?/ayna taskuniin? (Where do you live? [M/F])
anaa Taalib fii jaami’a . . . (I’m a student in [university].)
Personal Interests
Many friendships are forged on the bond of common interests. To talk about your hobbies or interests you can insert any of the following nouns into the sentences uHibb . . . (I like . . . ) or ul’ab . . . (I play . . . ).
kurat al-qadam (soccer)
kurat al-qadam alamriikiya (football [American])
kurat al-maDrib (tennis)
al-baysbuul (baseball)
as-sibaaHa (swimming)
al-jarii (running)
at-tajdhiif (rowing)
riyaaDa (sport)
al-muusiiqaa (music)
qiithaar (guitar)
biyaanuu (piano)
film, aflaam (movie[s])
masraH (plays, theater)
al-qiraa’a (reading)
ar-raqS (dancing)
Terms for an entire category or an abstract concept, like “swimming” or “music” require a definite article in Arabic, unlike English. Literally, you say in Arabic “I like the swimming” (uHibb as-sibaaHa).
You can use the following phrases to give you some guidelines to when making small talk in Arabic.
uHibb an ushaahid kurat al-qadam. (I like to watch soccer.)
nuHibb an nal’ab kurat al-maDrib. (We like to play tennis.)
yuHibb al-qiraa’a. (He likes reading.)
maadhaa tuHibb an tal’ab? (What do you like to play?)