Freelance Interpreter Tips and Tricks




Hi everybody!
Have you ever considered becoming a freelance interpreter? If so, that’s great! It’s an exciting direction to take your career in, and in order to prepare you, we’ve asked a few of our online school instructors if they had any wisdom to impart on the matter. The following are pointers that will help you begin navigating the world of freelance interpreting:

1. Map out the location of the assignment, as well as the parking situation, and plan to arrive at the assignment at least 15 minutes before. If you arrive right on time, you are already LATE.
2. Dress professionally, always wear close-toed shoes, and if you want to be 110% prepared, you can even bring a change of clothes.
4. If your assignment is in a government building, make sure you ask ahead of time if electronic devices are allowed, e.g. cell phones, tablets
5. Take extra writing supplies with you, such as pads and pens, and bring notes and dictionaries just in case.
6. Always gather as much information as possible about your assignment and study it before going in so you have an idea of what is going on and what kind of terminology will be used.
7. If you aren’t able to gather information ahead of time and you walk in cold to an assignment, ask if they would kindly tell you the type of case it is before the assignment begins.


1. Remember, you are a business. To offer the best service, be sure to get the credentials or certifications required by the client.
2. Ask clients what they need and see if you can provide it to them. If you are not hired by a potential client, be resilient and move onto the next opportunity.
3. Keep an eye on the market around you to come up with prices. Remember, the market prices change depending on where you are.
4. Rather than charging the same rate for every assignment, keep a range of rates depending on factors such as the difficulty level or type of assignment.
5. Keep accurate track of ending time of assignments for reporting purposes.
6. Be a teammate and support other colleagues. Collaborate if you’re working on an assignment together by communicating goals, feedback, and needs. The essence of success here is teamwork that reaches the goal. And the accolades will surely follow.

If you’d like more information and tips, please subscribe to our podcast, or visit





Written by and with the help of: Gabriela Villalba, Claudia Villalba, and James Plunkett

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