Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between translating and interpreting?

Translation is the transformation of the written word from one language to another; Interpreting is the conversion of the spoken word from one language to another.

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Can my administrative assistant, who speaks English and German, translate my marketing and sales literature into German?

What you want to ask yourself is “Would you use your administrative assistant to write your marketing and sales literature?” Typically, a company will use highly trained marketing writers to write marketing materials because they have the specific training for these projects. Professional translators have the training to maintain the carefully crafted messages. You may want to consider using your administrative assistant for gist translations on documents, but save the important translations for a professional translator.

How can I get the most out of my translation company?

Communicate your needs and make sure that you are available if any questions arise. In addition, allow enough time for the translators to complete the project. For more details on this topic, request the white paper on Eight ways to help your translation company help you.

What is Rapport International’s position on confidentiality?

All information is held strictly confidential, whether related to translation or interpreting projects. We do not disclose the contents of any of our customers’ projects without their permission. We will sign our standard non-disclosure agreement or yours as requested.

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How do you know your translators are good?

Rapport International screens translators for the following:

  • A solid command of grammar and syntax in the source and the target language
  • Certified by the American Translators’ Association or years of experience
  • Trained in the subject matter expertise if for a technical project
  • Familiar with material if for a non-technical project
  • Native speaker of the target language
  • Knowledgeable about local cultural for localization optimization
  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to translate so that the translation reads as if authored in the target language

How long does it take to complete a translation?

Typically, a translator can translate about 1,000 words per day. Allow extra time for scheduling the right translator, technically complex documents, longer documents, desktop publishing, and/or camera-ready output. We can accommodate rush needs so please talk to us about your particular situation.

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Can Rapport International provide a printed and an electronic version of translations?

Yes, we will provide you with your translation in the format that you prefer. For those languages that use a non-Roman writing system, we can provide the translated in a word document, but you may need a special application to open and read it. Otherwise, we can provide a PDF or print-ready files.

Can Rapport International handle technical instructions and specifications?

Yes, we work with certified professional translators who trained in areas such as medical, legal, engineering, finance, science, technology and the arts. We will match the right translator to your project for optimum results.

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What type of computer systems and software does Rapport International support?

We support most systems and software in all languages that we translate. For further discussion of your particular project, please contact us directly.

How do I determine what dialect to use for a Chinese translation?

For document translation, there are two types of characters – simplified and traditional: Simplified characters are used in Mainland China and Singapore. Traditional characters are used in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and many overseas Chinese communities. For a Chinese audience in the United States, we recommend using the traditional characters.

For interpreting, you will need to know the geographic area your audience is from. The two main dialects are the following:

  • Cantonese – for people from Southern China, Hong Kong, and some Chinese communities in the United States
  • Mandarin – for people from Northern China (Beijing), Taiwan and Singapore.

If I translate into Chinese, Japanese or Korean characters, will I be able to view and print the document?

You will be able to view and print the document if you have language-specific software to read the characters. Rapport International will typeset the translations or provide a PDF for any language that does not use the Roman alphabet.

How do you charge?

We base our translation costs on the word count of the target language. For a rough estimate of the words in character, divide the character count by two. For a rough estimate of words being translated into a Romance language, increase the count by 20%.

Translation rates include word processing and laser printing. Additional charges apply for extensive formatting, desktop publishing, typesetting, printing or rush jobs.

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Do you have a minimum fee?

Yes – our minimum fee is $95.

What are your terms of payment?

We require a 50% deposit on projects estimated at over $5,000; the rest is due net 30 days from final invoice. For projects less than $5000, we bill you upon delivery of the project. Terms are net 30 days on all invoices.

Does Rapport International use translation software?

We do not use translation software. Professional human translators do all of our translating and editing.

Would you recommend using translation software?

We cannot recommend any translation software for more than a “gist” translation. If you just need to know what a document is about, it is fine to use the translation software. But, if the document represents you and/or your company, have it professionally translated.