What are the average translator wages and how much can you make

What are the average translator wages and how much can you make
translator wages

Surveys say that the average translator wages are around 4,000 dollars a month. But this figure is only for in-house translators who have to go to the office everyday. For freelancers it’s hard to say. For every high earner there are a lot who barely get by, especially in the beginning.

Translator wages – how much they make

As with everything these days, there are translators that earn a lot, and there are translators that don’t do that much. Here are some factors that influence their earnings.

translator wages

Factors that influence translator wages

One of the factors that influence translator earnings is the rate. A beginner translator will quote the lowest rate for every source word. Which can be enough for some, especially those who live in countries where the standard of living is not that high. On the other hand, some people in developed countries think that being unemployed and getting welfare support is better than receiving that rate. Some even give a much lower quote if the project is huge or in bulk, such as a book translation with more than a 100,000 words can get even smaller rates. This is just so in order to get a job, any job. At least it counts as experience. And if the client likes their work they can bypass the bidding and offer future requests to the lucky translator directly.

A translator must also work hard to market himself and find work in order to raise his earnings. They have to increase their chances of being seen and then being chosen by scouting employers. They can’t just sit by and wait for work to fall on their lap. This would entail preparing a good resume, posting and scanning freelancer job sites, and taking translation tests. Working with a translation agency, a translator could have a steady income while doing extra work for his own customers.

How much can one linguist translate in a day?

Apart from the rate, a translator can probably do 2,000 words a day, at the most, assuming they can get relatively steady work. They could increase their translator by doing more if the material is not so hard and doesn’t require much research and if they’re willing to spend more time working (burnout risk aside).

Obviously, there are risks involved in trying to get too much done. Mistakes can happen. Clients won’t be happy with the translation, and the translator would have to go over his work again and again to correct errors.

The beauty of freelancing is that they can use the time they would’ve spent preparing and commuting to the office as time to do more work instead. They can also earn more if they don’t mind accepting jobs on weekends or holidays. They just have to remind themselves that sometimes they don’t have enough work during weekdays. Translator wages are a mixture of luck and hard work.

factors that influence earnings

Monetary amount aside, you can’t measure the satisfaction a translator has in finding the perfect word or fashioning the perfect sentence, or seeing their work appreciated and be useful to someone. That is the true translator earnings.

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