We asked Israelis what Hebrew slang words we need to know around the office. Here’s what they said:
1. רכב חברה
Transliteration: Re’chev Che’vra
Meaning: Company car. In Israel, many companies will lease out a car to their employees for a few years for work. In reality, they’re used for everything from camping, the beach, or any other outside of work activity you can think of.
2. תן ביס
Transliteration: Ten Bis
Meaning: Literally translated to “Give a bite,” this card is given as a benefit to employees so they can buy lunch at some pretty awesome restaurants on the company dime every day.
3. ‘שביזות יום א
Transliteration: Shvi’zoot Yom Ah-lef
Meaning: Originally a slang term from the army, this refers to the Sunday blues. Basically the Monday blues everywhere else in the world, but since the Israeli work week is typically from Sunday through Thursday, this sad feeling comes earlier in the week.
4. יום חמישי שמח
Transliteration: Yom Cha’mee’shee Sa’me’ach
Meaning: Happy Thursday! This is pretty much the Israeli equivalent to TGIF, since Thursdays are Fridays here.
Meaning: Literally meaning bridge, this refers to the idea of making your own super long weekend. High holidays sometimes fall on a Wednesday, so when employees take Thursday off they make a “bridge” to the weekend.
6. הפסקת סיגריה
Transliteration: Haf’sa’kat See’gahr’yah
Meaning: Smoke break. Always an excuse to take a 7 minute break and bond with your smoking colleagues, even if you don’t smoke.
Meaning: Basically refers to the feeling of not giving a damn anymore. This term originates from the Israeli army when you’re almost finished with your service or basic training, and you just don’t have it in you.
Meaning: Coffee capsules. Usually refers to Nespresso coffee capsules, which Israelis are obsessed with. It’s the ultimate perk to have a Nespresso machine with unlimited capsules in the office.
Meaning: Noon. But this actually just means lunch when you’re at work.
10. יום כיף/ יום גיבוש
Transliteration: Yom kef/Yom Gee’boosh
Meaning: Day of fun. This refers to a company day off where employees get the chance to bond, drink, and do other fun activities together.