How much does a certified translation cost?
Reyhan Balikci
November 5, 2019

How much does a certified translation cost?

A certified translation can only be provided by a certified translator. A certified translator is a unique and reserved title for members of the Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario (ATIO) or other similar provincial associations, who have passed the certification examination and subscribed to ATIO’s code of professional ethics.

While it is possible for professional translators to translate a variety of documents, including legal ones, it does not replace a certified translation that can be produced only by a certified translator. Since the process of becoming a certified translator is quite difficult and requires dedication, money, and a lot of time, it is only appropriate that the work only they can provide is more expensive in comparison to documents that can be translated by other professional translators who are not certified by a provincial association.

The most common pricing method in the industry is determined by a cost per word basis. On average, translators charge anywhere between $0.08 to $0.40 per word, which typically applies to the number of source words and not target language word counts. There are several variables that determine the initial price of the document, including rarity of the language (languages that are rare in the supply and demand chain will have a competitive price), complexity of the subject matter (it is common for translators to charge higher for providing expert services that are specific to a field of study or work), turnaround time (rush translation jobs typically incur charges that are 25% to 50% higher than regular rates), and other services such as proofreading and editing. All of these factors plus the work history and experience of the translator go into determining the price of the service provided.

On average, you should expect to pay somewhere between $30 to $125 per page, depending on the document type and the target language.

On average, you should expect to pay somewhere between $30 to $125 per page, depending on the document type and the target language. Additional pages generally cost less than the initial page and the cost per page decreases as the total page number of the document increases. For example the Translation Agency of Ontario prices their certified translation documents per page, with the first page costing $49 and each additional page costing $35. If you have more than 30 pages that need to be translated, the cost per page decreases to $25. However, this pricing also depends on the source language, as they have indicated that rare languages start from $69. Also, if you require a passport stamp, extra copy or a scanned copy of your translated documents, this will be an extra charge.

The turnaround time requested by the client largely determines the cost of a translation. The average turnaround time for most 1-3 page orders is 24-48 hours. Some companies, such as Rev, will have a page limit for the selected turnaround time meaning you will not be able to choose a short turnaround time for documents with over 10 pages. However, if you are within the page limit and are willing to pay an extra fee (possibly double or triple the usual rate) you can get it done in a few hours. It is also quite common for companies to charge extra fees for proofreading and editing services.

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