Highest Paying Translation Languages

Highest Paying Translation Languages: Are You At An Advantage?

Tired of the same old nine to five, working in a cubicle? If you are reading this, the chances are that you are most likely looking for new and innovative methods using our talents and capabilities to make money.

Those days of sitting endlessly in an office do not work for us anymore. One lucrative way to earn money is by being a freelance translator. But, there is one very important question. Is the language you know enough to make you a good living on it’s own? So today we are going to be talking about which are the highest paying translation languages.

First things first, if you are, or want to be a translator, the most basic thing you need to have is absolute fluency in two or more languages. That is to be able to read, write and speak all the languages you know. English is the primary language almost every translator must know. This is a sure shot way to make it big in this field. To have the upper hand, you must possess a strong academic record in the languages you know. By having that in your arsenal, you increase your chances on becoming a successful translator and making more money.


Another way to make it big in this field is to network with other individuals constantly. By building a strong rapport and relationship with other translators and clients, and also through word of mouth, you will get consistent work and higher pay.

If you plan on learning a whole new language to become a translator, this article will be an excellent guide to help you make the right choice. There is one crucial factor to remember before you learn a new language to be a translator, check the market to see which language has the upper hand over the others. By this we mean, there are some languages that pay you more than other languages.

There are several means to make money. If you are a complete newbie in this field and have no clue where to start, the best thing you can do is to do a quick web search to find websites that offer services where they connect clients with freelance translators. You can also find companies who are looking to hire in-house translators. However, this lacks the flexibility you will have while working as a freelance translator.

To get the ball rolling for you, we are going to suggest you a guide that has answers to all of your queries. Head to Translation 101: Starting Out As A Translator. This guide by Petro Dudi is your one stop to understand everything about translation. This guide isn’t just for newbies, but even for translators with a lot of experience. It is very easy to understand too. So, we suggest you get this guide right away to have a successful career in freelance translating.

Highest Paying Translation Languages: The Figures

Let head straight into business and tell you which language will make you the most money, especially if you are planning on learning a whole new language. Let us start talking about languages that pay you the least. The American Translators Association which collected data in 2006 showed that English to Italian translation and English to Portuguese translation earned its translator the lowest in the lot. On an average, the translators earned 12 cents per word.

The languages that pay you the highest per word are Arabic and Danish. The 2006 data from the same association showed that English to Arabic translation and English to Danish translation earns its translator on an average about 19 cents a word.

English to Chinese to earns its translator quite a lot of money. On an hourly payment basis, English to Chinese translators on an average earned about $75. But Chinese to English translators earned about $65.

Each country has different demands for languages. For example, in the United States, the languages that are most in demand are Japanese, Chinese, Arabic and Danish. So, if you are in the United States, you are guaranteed to have better opportunities if you plan on studying these languages.

In the United States again, certain European languages are still more valuable than the rest. French, German and Spanish translators earn substantially more than most other languages.

In terms of annual salary, the number can range from anywhere between $50,000 to $175,000. The large difference in the range of the salary can depend on several factors. It may depend on the degree of demand for that language, whether he or she is working as an independent translator or working as an in-house translator for a private firm, how well qualified the translator is in his or her field, and so on. Also, don’t forget the obvious – how much time you are prepared to work.

To give advice to the people who are interested in being translators is that whatever language you choose to learn, ensure that you master it. The higher you are qualified in a particular language, the higher are your chances to make more money.

In addition, whether you are bilingual or multilingual or are going to choose a language to learn, make sure that you know you will be capable of understanding it inside out. If you have memorization issues, it is always better to stick to a language that has similar numeric and alphabet system than that whose entirely different.

As an English speaker, it will be far easier for you to learn Spanish than Japanese. However, whatever language you choose, there are and always will be translation jobs that are lined up for you.

Working Abroad

Being a translator opens many doors, especially the possibility of working overseas, not only as a translator but also due to your “local” knowledge. For example, a company in Brazil who wants to do business in the USA, Canada, UK, Australia, etc. will have many Brazilians living there who can speak English and translate documents for them, but they don’t know “the lay of the land” in those countries as you, being a native American, etc. Think about it, if you speak Spanish as a second language, you can translate documents into Spanish all day long, but you probably don’t know the latest trends, etc. in say, Costa Rica.

In most cases, just being able to translate will be enough to land a good position or contract without having to leave your home country, but there are people who wish to travel also and this is a way of giving you an edge. In order to know what the requirements are to possess the necessary permits, it will be necessary to get in touch with the foreign country’s embassy.

In America, if you are able to obtain a work permit in the first place, translators can apply for certification from the American Translators Association, in order to be more successful in their field. Data collection by the same association showed that individuals who certified by them earned significantly higher than those who were not certified by them.

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