The Itasaalat: Around the Town In Sana’a

What is an itasaalat?

An itasaalat is a store from which you can make international or local calls.

What does an itasaalat look like?

An itasaalat is filled with numbered booths……


Making Calls at an Itasaalat

To make a call, you simply go into a booth and dial your number on the phone. A meter inside each booth keeps track of your toll.

When you have finished your call, note your charge and go to the cashier (All the meters are networked to the cashier).

 An itasaalat usually also sells phone cards for mobile or land line phones.

When using an itasaalat to make international calls or calls to cell phones, be sure to keep an eye on your charge as these types of calls run up quickly.

Also, you should probably know the country code for the country you are calling. Some itasaalat cashiers may know the codes or a chart may be posted in the booth or on the wall, but just don’t count on it.


Related words:

Some words for phone in Arabic are haatif or telefone.  Mobile phones are called mo-bile, pronounced as in British English, not as mo-bil in American English.


Itasaalat, like the baqaalun (see previous post) are all over the place. I don’t think you will find individual phone booths here as in the West, but rather the itasaalat.


Around the Town in Sana’a

Be sure to stop by TJ’s new feature, “Around the Town in Sana’a” for a look at different types of establishments (businesses), services, etc that you will find in Sana’a. 

Great for those new to Sana’a, to get an idea of “how stuff works” in Sana’a’ or where to go to find the stuff you need, insha Allah or those just interested in learning about Sana’a/Yemen.



Around the Town in Sana’a