10 Pros And Cons Of Working As A Freelance Translator

Who is a Translator? 

A person who converts the written content from one language to the other is called a Translator. These people usually need to be well-versed with at least one language other than English. They can work either in a translation agency or as a freelancer depending upon their choice.

Working as a freelance translator usually seems very attractive because of its flexibility, but contrary to its benefits, there are several disadvantages to this profession.

So, let us discuss all the pros and cons of working as a freelance translator to help you out.

Pros Of Being A Freelance Translator

freelance translator

  1. You can control your schedule:

You can opt for as many hours as you want while working as a freelance translator. Depending on your needs, it gives you the flexibility to take some or many projects. 

  1. Increasing Demand: 

Every year, several companies and businesses try to expand their boundaries or tie bonds with foreign investors. Therefore, they are always in search of translators and interpreters who are skilled in multiple languages. Moreover, the number of people traveling abroad has increased, and most online businesses usually turn up into international ones. All these factors are directly responsible for the increasing demand for freelance translators

  1. You can work from anywhere: 

As a freelance translator, you would rarely meet the client. All the instructions would be technically received either through phone, email, or video conferencing. Also, you can finally say goodbye to those uncomfortable chairs, hectic timings, and aching back. Instead can sit comfortably anywhere and anytime at home or somewhere else. 

  1. You can choose clients, jobs, and set rates: 

When you are in a regular job, you cannot choose the type of assignment you have to do or the amount you will be paid for it. But, as a freelance translator, you get the freedom to decide everything. 

  1. Financially Rewarding: 

In this profession, if you are successful in building a trusted bond with your clients, then there are high chances of constant workflow with a rewarding source of income. 

  1. Increases productivity: 

Many of us get easily distracted at the workplace by our co-workers. But when we work as a freelance translator, our productivity increases. The private space helps us to work efficiently without wasting much time. 

  1. Opportunity for expansion: 

When we work in a regular 9 to 5 job of a translator, only limited growth chances come our way. But, in freelancing, there are no limits until you are consistent and dedicated. After progressing to a certain level, you can even think about starting your translation agency. 

  1. Learning With Every New Project

With every project that comes your way, you can learn something new by interacting with different clients. It expands your skills, industry-specific knowledge, and even cultural understanding. You know a lot as a translator and even crave it.

  1. You Can Save Money and Time Spent on Transportation

Being a freelance translator, you can save the money usually spent on transportation. Also, a lot of time will be saved, which can be used for getting new projects.

  1. Be an Entrepreneur 

Working as a freelance translator gives you the ability to control your career profitability, professional growth, and also gives you a feeling of personal satisfaction. Moreover, the flexibility to set your schedule, goals, regular skill improvement, and the direction where you want to take your business, everything together gives us a sense of entrepreneurship we all dream.

Cons Of Being A Freelance Translator: 

freelance translator

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  1. Staying on Business

It is a challenging job and requires you to always stay in business. For this purpose, you need to have a proper marketing strategy to convince the potential clients and keep up with the existing ones, only then your business would survive.

  1. Overhead Expenses 

In this business, certain overhead expenses usually go unnoticed. Where the first one is the computer systems that require replacement now and then. Also, you have to buy word processing systems, accounting software, translation software, etc. to be more efficient. 

  1. Recruiting For Large-Scale Projects

Sometimes you will come across clients who might offer you a large scale project with limited time. In such situations, you will have to recruit DTP artists, additional linguists, and proofreaders, which will be costly and time-consuming.

  1. You Pay Your Taxes

Another disadvantage of this career option is that you have to pay your taxes. In short, you need to manage your expenses. 

  1. Instability persists: 

    Along with the perks of being a freelancer, it carries certain drawbacks. There is no guarantee of work, you might have projects today, but it is uncertain that you will have them in the future. 

  1. Loneliness: 

As a freelancing translator, you might feel lonely because of not having much time for socializing. It would not affect you, though, if you are an introvert. 

  1. No public acknowledgment:

 In this profession, you have to work under anonymity because of which you never get public recognition and exposure. 

  1. Irregular working hours:

 There will be times when you won’t get time to have your food or attend some events because of the projects. Therefore, if you could maintain a proper schedule, things will be a little easier.

  1. A Competitive Market

As it offers several benefits, there is a lot of competition in this field. That is why you need to constantly work on your translation skills, marketing skills, and communication, which will help you out space the competition.

  1. Emergency cases 

Many times there will emergency projects lined up. Where you might have a lot to do in a limited time. This will either stress you out or else exhaust you out.


If you are hard-working and determined, then you can achieve success as a freelance translator. Go through all the pros and cons mentioned here in this career path, and if you feel that it goes well with your personality, you should go for it without thinking much. 

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