You have decided you want to learn Arabic! A great choice.
Firstly, you need to know that any new language is not easy to learn, and you need to put much effort into the learning process.
Whether you are curious about learning Arabic, seek to be fluent in Arabic, or you work in one of the Arab countries and just want to converse with your Arabic friends, you will indeed benefit from the following steps, and it will make your learning process much easier and faster.
Step 1: Choose between Dialect or Classical Arabic
It has been common among the new Arabic learners to start with the Classical Arabic (Fusha), which is being used in Arabic newspapers, novels, poems, etc. However, natives do not speak Fusha. While Arabic is the mother tongue and national language of nearly 25 countries in the Middle East and northern Africa, different local accents are spoken.
If you travel to one of the Arab countries, you will hear the natives in each country speak in different dialects that would make you think it is a total different language. Therefore, you need to ask yourself why you want to learn Arabic. If you are interested in the Arabic language in general, then you will probably need to learn Fusha and learn the roots of the language, however, if your goal is to only use it at work or with your friends or your partner, then choose one of the Arabic dialects without bothering yourself learning Fusha.
Step 2: Learn some phrases and memorize them
If you are a complete beginner and have no previous knowledge of Arabic, then memorizing some basic phrases used in daily life will help you start a real conversation in Arabic and will be a great aid in your next steps to learn Arabic.
Step 3: Learn the Arabic Alphabet
The Arabic alphabet is entirely new and unique, and its pronunciation seems to be a bit hard for the non-native Arabic speakers, however, your level at Arabic will be at higher levels when you learn how to pronounce the Arabic word correctly without the need to use materials with transliterations.
You will notice that you are having a progress and you will be able to write and read in Arabic, and pronounce more accurately.
Step 4: Be familiar with the language
Because there is no shared vocabulary between Arabic and Latin-based languages, you may find it odd to hear, read or write Arabic words, therefore, you need to indulge in the Arabic language and in the culture of the Arab countries in order to be familiar with the language and learn it easier.
You can do so by reading the Arabic newspaper, listening to the Arabic Radio or Arabic songs, or watch Arabic movies and cartoons.
Step 5: Join a course
If you have applied the above steps, then you are in the stage where you can introduce yourself in Arabic, say a few phrases, and maybe understand some phrases too. Nonetheless, you are not speaking Arabic yet.
Hence, it is time to join a course to reach the Arabic fluency you are seeking since it will help you learn Arabic in a structured way.
Step 5: Have a real conversation
Listening and writing in Arabic will not be enough to master the language, yet conversing with people who speak Arabic whether they are natives, new learners like you, or fluent non-native Arabic speakers will be a great advantage in your path to learn Arabic.
You may not easily find a partner to practice Arabic with, however, language application or online groups can help you in this task. Alternatively, you may consider traveling to an Arabic country where it would be adventurous and fun.