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Document Translation Costs, Process, and Top Services

Last Updated: August 25, 2023

Summary: Document Translation Prices #

Translation services range from $0.04 per word for machine translation with light review, to $0.10 per word for certified translation, and $0.11 to $0.16 per word for professional human translation. Per page rates average around $25.

Document translation is the process by which the source language of an original document is professionally and accurately translated to a different target language. Translation services are essential to helping the global economy go round. It is a necessary and effective solution for addressing language barriers in a variety of situations (i.e. medical and/or legal documents).

How Document Translation Works #

  1. Submission of Documents: You provide the document that needs to be translated to the translation service provider. This can be done through online platforms, email, or other means.

  2. Evaluation and Quoting: The service evaluates the document's length, complexity, and language pair to provide you with a cost estimate and turnaround time.

  3. Assigning a Translator: The service assigns a professional translator with expertise in the specific subject matter and language pair of your document. This ensures accurate translation and understanding of technical terms or industry jargon.

  4. Translation: The translator begins translating the document while considering grammar, syntax, tone, and cultural context to maintain the intended meaning.

  5. Editing and Proofreading: After translation, the document is reviewed and edited for accuracy, consistency, and fluency. This step may involve multiple linguists to ensure quality.

  6. Quality Assurance: Some services use software tools or perform additional checks to ensure accuracy, consistency, and adherence to quality standards.

  7. Formatting: The translated content is formatted to match the original document's layout, fonts, and styles, ensuring a professional appearance.

  8. Review and Approval: You receive the translated document for review. If any modifications are required, you can provide feedback to the service.

  9. Certification (If Needed): For legal, official, or business documents, some services offer certified translation to validate accuracy.

  10. Delivery: Once approved, the translated document is delivered to you in the desired format, whether it's digital or printed.

Document Translation Service Average Costs #

There are enormous variations in cost for document translation service. The target language, size and complexity of a document, turn around time, and the quality of the source text are a few of the most important considerations in terms of pricing.

What you should know:

  • Total cost, price terms, and turn around time should be agreed upon at the very beginning stages of a service agreement.
  • Flat fees for payment by the hour or page are not ordinarily used as a translation billing method for lengthy documents. However, in the case of legal or shorter documents it is more common. On average, expect to pay $20 to $50 per page for certified translation, depending on the document type and the target language.
  • The most common pricing method and industry standard is determined by a cost per word basis. On average, expect to pay $0.04 to $0.20 per word. (This typically applies to the number of source words and not target language word counts.)
  • It is common for companies to charge higher fees for languages with more complex translation demands.
  • Some translation services charge extra fees for proofreading and editing services.
  • Rush translation jobs typically incur charges 25% to 50% higher than regular rates.

Rates for the Best Document Translation Services #

  • RushTranslate: Costs start at $0.10 per word with 24 hour delivery for standard translation while certified translation services cost $24.95 per page (up to 250 words per page).

  • Universal Translation Services: Business translation services cost $0.10 per word while certified translation costs $20 per page if there are less than 200 words on the page.

  • Translated: Translated offers 3 translation solutions:

    • Economy (Machine translation with a light review): $0.04 per word
    • Professional (human translator with quality control): $0.11 per word
    • Premium (human translator with quality control and specialized reviser): $0.16 per word
  • The Spanish Group: Offers simple pricing as follows

    • If your document requires a certified translation then it’s $30/page
    • All other documents are priced per word at 10¢/word
  • Translayte: Offers 3 tiers of pricing

    • Standard:
      • Price: From $0.05 per word
      • Ideal for: General content for internal use, support, or e-commerce.
      • Includes: Translator (Native Speaking)
      • Proofreader: Not specified
      • Desktop Publishing: Not specified
    • Professional:
      • Price: From $0.10 per word
      • Ideal for: Standard business and technical documents, websites, and software.
      • Includes: Translator (Expert Translator)
      • Proofreader: Included
      • Desktop Publishing: Not specified
    • Specialist:
      • Price: From $0.15 per word
      • Ideal for: Marketing, legal, or medical documents requiring a specialist translator with domain expertise.
      • Includes: Specialist Translator
      • Proofreader: Included
      • Desktop Publishing: On Request
  • Blend Express: General business content translation costs $0.096 per word while industry specific translation costs $0.13 per word.