Interpreter or Translator Salary

For Interpreters, hourly average wages total $20.11 per hour. The income range spans the entire spectrum between $11.05 per hour and $39.92. Location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by tenure. Just over two-fifths of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, a little over a half report medical coverage and over a third claim dental coverage as well. Most Interpreters report high levels of job satisfaction. Female Interpreters make up most of the survey respondents at 70 percent. The numbers in this rundown were provided by PayScale's salary survey participants.

$19,852 - $70,345
(Median)
$20K
$42K
$70K
MEDIAN: $42,465
10%
50%
90%

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$11.05 - $39.92
(Median)
$11
$20
$40
MEDIAN: $20
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$27K$54K$81K
Salary
$19,852 - $70,345  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,091  
Profit Sharing
$7,500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$22,311 - $80,431  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 138
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$20$40$60
Hourly Rate
$11.05 - $39.92  
   
Hourly Tips
$2.50  
Overtime
$6.07 - $59.60  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,091  
   
Profit Sharing
$7,500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$22,311 - $80,431  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 270
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Job Description for Interpreter or Translator

An interpreter's main duties are to translate information from one language to another and vice-versa. An associate's or bachelor's degree may be required for this position, though not necessarily. All interpreter/translator positions within the country require that the person be a legal citizen of the United States of America, and most positions also require that applicants have their own reliable method of transportation to get to work.

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Interpreter or Translator Tasks

  • Proofread, edit, and revise translated materials.
  • Assist in creating documents and presentation materials in foreign languages for meetings and general communications.
  • Translate or interpret written, oral, or sign language text into another language for others.
  • Provide linguistic assistance to clients or associates.

Common Career Paths for Interpreter or Translator


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Interpreters tend not to experience significant pay changes as they move up the career ladder to roles like Sign Language Interpreter. The two jobs pay about the same on average. An Interpreter may also move into a role as a Translator or a Spanish Interpreter and Translator.

Interpreter or Translator Job Listings

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Interpreters generally report applying a varied skill set to their work. Most notably, facility with Localization and Translation and Chinese, Mandarin Language are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 45 percent and 18 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Bilingual, Japanese Language, and English Language. Those with knowledge of English Language tend to be skilled in Spanish Language as well.

Pay by Experience Level for Interpreter or Translator

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Interpreters with more experience do not necessarily bring home bigger paychecks. In fact, experience in this field tends to impact compensation minimally. Although individuals who have less than five years' experience earn $40K on average, people with five to 10 years benefit from a notably larger average of $45K. Interpreters with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $50K. Respondents who claim more than 20 years of experience may encounter pay that doesn't quite reflect their extensive experience; these veterans report a median income of around $54K.

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Experience Affects Interpreter or Translator Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 26%

Experienced
up arrow 19%

Mid-Career
up arrow 7%

National Average
$42,000


Skills That Affect Interpreter or Translator Salaries

Localization and Translation
up arrow 45%

Chinese, Mandarin Language
up arrow 18%

National Average
$42,000

Spanish Language
up arrow 2%

English Language
up arrow 4%

Japanese Language
up arrow 5%

Bilingual
up arrow 12%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 28 votes.

Gender

Female
70 %
Male
30 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
8%
1-4 years
40%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
23%
20 years or more
12%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 54%
dental benefits
Dental: 36%
medical benefits
Vision: 30%
dental benefits
None: 45%
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