Different Ways to Charge for Translating Content

Different Ways to Charge for Translating Content

Connecting with people from different parts of the world has been made easy with the help of translators. Even though we speak different languages, we are able to communicate with people from different parts of the world and build somewhat of a relationship or bond with them. We are able to share ideas, knowledge, and build businesses which help make our world a better place.

Language barriers are being brought down and translators have played their part thanks to their skills. Connecting people from all over the world helps make it easier for us to understand other country’s issues, gives us a chance to work out our differences and accept each other.

Translators play a very important role in our society and one of their main responsibilities is to provide an accurate translation from one language to the target language. It is important for them to give the translation as if it was just like the original.

There are skills and traits that you need to have to be a translator. First is to have full command of 2 or more languages. It’s not just with words you have to be familiar with but also with their expressions, saying, idioms, slangs, and phrases.

Translators need to make sure that they deliver the exact message and avoid making even the slightest change to it. Merely knowing a few words is not enough to become a professional translator. A second quality that you would need to have is to be passionate about the country that the target language is from. This would make translating a breeze for you.

It would make it enjoyable and fulfilling. It’s great to immerse yourself with the country’s culture as well. It would be another huge plus if you get to visit the country and converse with the native people as practice, even just for a few days.

Translating is a fun way to make a living. You can do it from the comfort of your home with only the use of a computer. You can earn a good amount of money too but of course it would still have to depend on the experience and the skills that you have.

It can take some time for you to consider yourself a master of a language unless it’s your native tongue. At the beginning, you would have to start at a small rate just like in any other job. Once you have gained experience and established yourself, you can start charging more and potentially earn an income of six figures.

The rate for translating depends on a number of things. Below are a few examples how translators would usually charge for their services:

Charging based on the number of words

This is the most common way of how translators charge their clients. The average rate per word for entry level is 5 cents. For more experienced translators, their rate can be as much as 40 cents per word. Of course, it would still depend on what the topic is and what language you need to translate.

Hourly translation rates

This way of charging is what many clients prefer as it can cost a lot less than charging based on the number of words. The hourly rate for translator ranges between $20 up to $40. Now that isn’t bad at all considering that you wouldn’t need to invest in any special material; just on educating yourself.

Translating per page

Although not very common, there are still translators who charges according to the number of pages regardless of the number of words and how many hours it will take for them to finish it. The cost for a page ranges from $35 up to $70. General or personal text costs the least while medical papers and legal documents are the most expensive ones

Charging based on the language

Languages that usually have a higher rate are those that are rare, hard to learn, and not a lot of people are practicing it. One of the most in demand languages is Mandarin Chinese.

Since there is a fairly large pool of translators available for this language, its average rate is usually from 10 cents up to 15 cents per word. Another example is the Norwegian language. Norwegian is considered one of the most expensive languages to translate. The rate can cost up to 25 cents per word.

Rate based on the type of document or it’s subject

Formal or professional documents tend to cost more than news articles and general text. This is due to the complexity of the words that are being used. If the document contains a lot of technical terms, the rate per word can cost up to 40 cents per word.

How to increase your rate

To increase your rate, it’s advisable that you get certification in the language. Getting certified will allow more clients to trust your skills and hire you. This can also serve as an edge for you as the competition for translators is pretty high. If you’re only just beginning to learn a specific language, it maybe helpful if you enroll in an excellent institution or renowned program.

Hiring a private online tutor can work wonders as well. All you need to do is to sit in front of the computer and have a video or voice call with your teacher. This can also be a great practice because you will be conversing with someone who is a native speaker. Having hands on experience like this would make it much easier for you to perfect the language you are studying.


If you are fluent in two or more languages, then you should really consider being a translator. The job would be fairly easy for you and your potential income is really high if you put in the work.

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