Translator vs Interpreter: What Are The Differences

If you want to get into language as your career or part time job, it is important that you know the difference between a translator and an interpreter. This will help to determine which kind of language job you prefer. This article talks about the differences and similarities of the two and which might be better: translator or interpreter.

Translation and interpretation are closely related linguistic disciplines and are performed by different people. It means no single person performs both. Why? The difference between translation and interpretation lie on the training, skills, tests, and even knowledge in language that one person can rarely possess on a professional level at the same time. While the interpreter translates a language orally, translation interprets it in written form. Both linguistic disciplines are rooted to the deep love and knowledge of certain languages.

Translator vs interpreter: Which is right for you?

While translating and interpreting are two linguistic disciplines, most people do not or cannot do both at once. You do one while you don’t do the other. Are you thinking of getting into this career? To determine which is better for you, translator or interpreter, let us look at the set of technical skills and knowledge that you possess.


Translation is the ability to express oneself clearly towards a certain language and the ability to write well. A person need to have a good understanding of the source language and the culture of the country where the text comes from.

A good library of dictionaries and reference materials are also important in translating a language to another. It is done only in one direction and most translators do it only into their native language.


On the other hand, interpreting is the ability to translate languages in both directions on the spot without the use of dictionaries and other reference materials. Interpreting comes in two different types: simultaneous and consecutive.

Simultaneous interpreting

The type of interpreting which most people are all familiar with is simultaneous interpreting. In simultaneous interpreting, the interpreter sits inside a booth, wears a pair of headphones, and speaks to the microphone. Guests and foreign dignitaries hear the interpreted language from the interpreter through their headphones.

In simultaneous interpreting, the interpreters won’t start the task until they hear the end of the sentence. To be able to interpret, the interpreters need to understand the general meaning of the sentence. This is quite difficult because interpreters need to translate the sentence into another language while listening simultaneously to and understanding the next sentence.

Consecutive interpreting

Another type is consecutive interpreting. Here the speaker pauses every 1 – 5 minutes and the interpreter steps in to render the spoken language into the target language. In consecutive interpreting, the key skill is to take notes to be able to remember the full paragraph with any loss in detail.

Once you have chosen your desired linguistic approach, your objective is to gain more knowledge, develop deeper enthusiasm, and have training and certifications for your chosen path. This is vital to enable you to land the jobs you want, get found and hired by clients, and get paid.

Translation 101

Are you looking for translation jobs where you don’t have to time in a real office and get stuck to traffic? Well, there are a lot of ways in which you can earn money without having to leave home. The internet has made this possible and we should be thankful to it. You can find in the internet hundreds of translator and interpreter jobs you can apply for. However, not all of these websites are trustworthy and some clients are bogus and hard to deal with.

One of the best translation training resources is Translation 101. It provides you all the information you need to begin working successfully as an online translator, making it easy for you to take any one of of hundreds of translator jobs posted by clients all over the world on online marketplaces. You can earn as much as $100 for translating text documents, $35 to translate emails, and you can also get paid by providing movie subtitles and translating simple books, all after training with the aid of Translation 101. Payment options for these translation sites often include Western Union, bank transfers, and PayPal are convenient and always readily available near you, making them good venues to start your translating job.

Translation 101 is a promising factor to your career. In just simple click, you can get started in just 5 minutes. For just $14.99, you gain access to some of the best, most insightful, and most useful training information on the planet. Start your career as a translator or interpreter today!

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