Rates for full day instant interpreting...
Thread poster: Morten Alme

Morten Alme

English to Norwegian
Apr 25, 2014

As a writer, I have done mostly subtitling, and other translations. Never any instant translations. Now, I got a potential customer who offers me a two weeks job in Belfast.

What would be the norm for a decent rate here, and would it be not too far fetched to have them foot the expenses as travel, food and accommodation?

I lived in Belfast for more than 3 years some years ago. Almost got married there. It would be strange to come back to the town that educated me as a writer. Should I demand extra for any possible emotional impact on the trip as well?

Thanks for all advice


 

Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:44
Member
English to French
A different matter Apr 28, 2014

Morten Alme wrote:
As a writer, I have done mostly subtitling, and other translations. Never any instant translations. Now, I got a potential customer who offers me a two weeks job in Belfast.

In my opinion, (written) translation and (spoken) interpreting are very different activities, which require a different set of skills, whatever your proficiency in languages.

I wouldn't assume that I can do interpreting because I can translate.
Morten Alme wrote:
Should I demand extra for any possible emotional impact on the trip as well?

Nice one!
It is a joke, right?

Philippe


 

Morten Alme

English to Norwegian
TOPIC STARTER
Rates and jokes Apr 28, 2014

Philippe Etienne wrote:

Morten Alme wrote:
As a writer, I have done mostly subtitling, and other translations. Never any instant translations. Now, I got a potential customer who offers me a two weeks job in Belfast.

In my opinion, (written) translation and (spoken) interpreting are very different activities, which require a different set of skills, whatever your proficiency in languages.

I wouldn't assume that I can do interpreting because I can translate.
Morten Alme wrote:
Should I demand extra for any possible emotional impact on the trip as well?

Nice one!
It is a joke, right?

Philippe


Thanks

But not much information I could use for the potensial Client.

I know translation and Instant interpretation are two different things. However, I have lived both Languages interchangeable the last ten years, working in both Languages, in Belfast among other places. So that is the least of the issues I am dealing With.

MÈ joking?
Anyone making rumours that I am a joker is a liar...


 

Morten Alme

English to Norwegian
TOPIC STARTER
ME Jokinj Apr 28, 2014

Philippe Etienne wrote:

Morten Alme wrote:
As a writer, I have done mostly subtitling, and other translations. Never any instant translations. Now, I got a potential customer who offers me a two weeks job in Belfast.

In my opinion, (written) translation and (spoken) interpreting are very different activities, which require a different set of skills, whatever your proficiency in languages.

I wouldn't assume that I can do interpreting because I can translate.
Morten Alme wrote:
Should I demand extra for any possible emotional impact on the trip as well?

Nice one!
It is a joke, right?

Philippe


The task ofDirect interpretation is not the issue. The issue is how much I can ask for the job.

ME joking?
That's just an ridiculous rumour made by people I have made to laugh...


 

Diana Obermeyer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:44
Member (2013)
German to English
+ ...
no need Apr 28, 2014

Strong reactions and artificial offence taking tend to discourage the volunteering of advice.

I will answer your last question in a way that you are less likely to misunderstand:

NO. You should absolutely NOT dump your own personal issues on a potential client. He is offering you business and is highly unlike to agree to a surcharge for matters unrelated to the specific assignment. If anything, bringing your own personal issues into the work environment will create the impression that you will not be able to maintain a professional attitude on the job and therefore not be able to complete the assignment to the required standard. You set a fee based on the work involved and the costs incurred. Most employers would stop taking you seriously if you were to mention any emotional baggage and drop the agreement before it is too late. They would also likely shake their head in complete and utter disbelieve that somebody actually had the brass neck to propose such a thing as levying a charge for their own personal emotional baggage. And they would laugh about it, but not in good way.

So, unless you are determined to scare your potential client away, you should not expect or suggest a consideration for personal issues.


 

Morten Alme

English to Norwegian
TOPIC STARTER
First of all, the last one was a joke Apr 28, 2014

dianaft wrote:

Strong reactions and artificial offence taking tend to discourage the volunteering of advice.

I will answer your last question in a way that you are less likely to misunderstand:

NO. You should absolutely NOT dump your own personal issues on a potential client. He is offering you business and is highly unlike to agree to a surcharge for matters unrelated to the specific assignment. If anything, bringing your own personal issues into the work environment will create the impression that you will not be able to maintain a professional attitude on the job and therefore not be able to complete the assignment to the required standard. You set a fee based on the work involved and the costs incurred. Most employers would stop taking you seriously if you were to mention any emotional baggage and drop the agreement before it is too late. They would also likely shake their head in complete and utter disbelieve that somebody actually had the brass neck to propose such a thing as levying a charge for their own personal emotional baggage. And they would laugh about it, but not in good way.

So, unless you are determined to scare your potential client away, you should not expect or suggest a consideration for personal issues.


Thanks for the non answer completely irrelevant to the core of my actual question.

Are there anyone interpreters here who's done jobs who can give me an estimate of what is the normative price...please?

Thanks for any substantive suggestions in advance...


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 19:44
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
My two cents Apr 28, 2014

Morten Alme wrote:
What would be the norm for a decent rate here, and would it be not too far fetched to have them foot the expenses as travel, food and accommodation?

I only ever did a couple of interpreting assignments before deciding it wasn't for me - even though I lived and worked for 15 years in France and my social life used the two languages consecutively. So, limited experience so take my views with a large pinch of salt. But one thing is crystal clear to me: you can't be out of pocket because you accept their assignment.

That means that if you have to pay for flights and hotels etc in advance then you need to get that money from them before you leave. If they leave choices to you, then you really don't have to fly first class and stay in a 5-star hotel, IMO, but nor do you have to totally slum it. The same applies to eating, where maybe a daily allowance would be both easier and fairer to both parties. Personally, I would take account of the fact that housekeeping bills at home would be reduced. As for travelling time, I don't know if there's a consensus but I would imagine that you can do some work en route; if not, and if you're travelling during normal working hours, or if you're spending the time preparing for the assignment e.g. studying glossaries and past reports on the subject, then I think I'd want to charge something.

But do make sure it's all crystal clear to both parties before you actually agree finally to do it. Otherwise it's likely to go very sour when they get the bill.


 

Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:44
Member
English to French
Feather ruffling Apr 28, 2014

Sheila Wilson wrote:
I only ever did a couple of interpreting assignments before deciding it wasn't for me - even though I lived and worked for 15 years in France and my social life used the two languages consecutively.

Hear, hear. Hence my blissfully ignored warning. And two weeks is a long assignment.
I did do liaison interpreting (3 missions of 3 days and 2 and 3 weeks), and I have an idea about what it entails, as opposed to the asker. Of course, expenses were paid and we had a per-diem.
But it wasn't for me either, even with daily use of both languages and knowing the subject.
dianaft wrote:
NO. You should absolutely NOT dump your own personal issues on a potential client.

Thank you for elaborating on the matter. Seriously.


 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:44
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
They difference is tremendous. Apr 29, 2014

Philippe Etienne wrote:

Morten Alme wrote:
As a writer, I have done mostly subtitling, and other translations. Never any instant translations. Now, I got a potential customer who offers me a two weeks job in Belfast.

In my opinion, (written) translation and (spoken) interpreting are very different activities, which require a different set of skills, whatever your proficiency in languages.

I wouldn't assume that I can do interpreting because I can translate.
Philippe


I've been translating for decades now, and also lived in a bilingual environment for decades. However, when I was called to do an interpretation job, I quickly realized that translation and simultanous interpreting a two different worlds.

Philippe Etienne wrote:
Morten Alme wrote:
Should I demand extra for any possible emotional impact on the trip as well?

Nice one!
It is a joke, right?

Philippe


It must be a joke. Can you imagine including a compensatory fee for any emotional / physical / mental damage that might arise from a job? One'd soon be out of customers, either because they're too busy laughing to assign any work, or because they find a collaboration too risky.icon_biggrin.gif


 

Diana Obermeyer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:44
Member (2013)
German to English
+ ...
Official guidance Apr 29, 2014

Now I would like to draw attention to the fact that these guidance figures refer to PROFESSIONAL interpreters and that one of the characteristics of a professional is the ability to refrain from disrespectful language. Professional interpreters are also able to refrain from emotional reactions. They reflect the tone of the speaker and do not react in a dramatic way, even if they feel strongly about a matter. Further, they do not misunderstand common phrases. Language skills are only part of the job. Communication skills - including not misinterpreting matters - are equally important. A balanced nature and friendly demeanour are absolutely essential. The ability to maintain a professional tone, even when under pressure, separates the wheat from the chaff. I would also like to reiterate at this point that any given potential client would doubt that the aforementioned essential characteristics of a professional interpreter would be fulfilled by a person considering a surcharge for emotional baggage.

The National Careers Service suggests:

***Starting salaries range from £18,000 to £21,000 a year. Salaries for experienced interpreters can be up to £30,000 with some international organisations paying considerably more, particularly if working outside the UK.
The European Commission pays around €4,350 a month for new starters on staff contracts, and from €5,550 a month for experienced staff. It pays new freelance staff a daily rate around €310 and experienced freelancers around €400.
In the UK, freelance interpreters’ daily rates can be £10 to £15 an hour in some liaison roles advertised through agencies, and £30 to £40 an hour, rising to £60 for very experienced interpreters in other roles. Pay is better in conference interpreting and rates for telephone interpreting are generally lower.
Contracts can be for a minimum of two or three hours, but this is becoming less common in public service interpreting.

Figures are intended as a guideline only.***
https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/advice/planning/jobprofiles/Pages/interpreter.aspx

Other sources:

AIIC-UN Agreement rates: daily net rate: GBP 449.00

UK government (restricted to a full members of the National Register of Public Services Interpreters (NRPSI), or holders of Diploma in Public Services Interpreting (DPSI) (Law) )
Monday to Friday First hour: £48 then: 0801 - 1800: £16 per hour 1801 - 0800: £20 per hour
Saturday First hour: £72 then £26 per hour
Sundays and bank holidays First hour: £72 then: £32 per hour

Legal aid board: GBP 30/hour



[Edited at 2014-04-29 19:24 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-04-30 06:09 GMT]


 

Elena Volkova  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 21:44
English to Russian
+ ...
£50 per day May 2, 2014

I am sorry but if you want to take on this job you will not do a good one. So no way you can demand a proper rate.

Incidentally, I believe the correct term is "simultaneous interpreting", not "direct" or "instant". Surely, if you think that you can do it, you should at least know what it's called.

Give yourself a little test: switch on the TV and try translating after the speaker, listening to him at the same time as you will be speaking, without losing the thread and remembering to mention key details. See how you get along. Then decide if you really want to embarrass yourself and let down your client.

I mean all of the above kindly.



[Edited at 2014-05-02 13:34 GMT]


 


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