Here is Why Sworn Translators in Istanbul Quote Pricing Based on Characters and Legal Translators in Dubai Quote as Per the Number of Words

In the realm of legal translation, pricing models can vary significantly based on geographic location and specific industry practices. Two prominent hubs for legal translation, Istanbul and Dubai, illustrate this variation distinctly. In Istanbul, sworn translators, known as “yeminli tercüman,” typically quote their services based on the number of characters in the source text. In contrast, in Dubai, legal translators usually charge based on the number of words. This article explores the reasons behind these different pricing strategies and the implications for clients and translators in both cities.

Understanding the Role of a Yeminli Tercüman in Istanbul

A yeminli tercüman in Istanbul is a sworn translator who has taken an oath before a notary public to provide accurate and faithful translations. These translations are legally recognized by government agencies, courts, and other official institutions in Turkey. The primary responsibility of a yeminli tercüman is to ensure that translations are precise, reliable, and legally valid.

Character-Based Pricing Model

In Istanbul, yeminli tercüman typically quote their services based on the number of characters in the source text. This character-based pricing model has several advantages and is deeply rooted in the Turkish language and legal framework.

1. Language Structure: The Turkish language, which is agglutinative, often combines multiple morphemes into a single word. This results in longer words that carry complex meanings. Character-based pricing is seen as a fairer method to account for the effort involved in translating these longer, compound words.

2. Standardisation: By using characters as the unit of measurement, translators can provide more standardised and consistent pricing. This approach helps to mitigate discrepancies that might arise from varying word lengths and structures in different languages.

3. Detailed Billing: Character-based billing allows for detailed and precise invoicing. Clients can easily understand and verify the charges, as the number of characters is a straightforward metric to calculate.

4. Quality Assurance: Charging by characters encourages translators to focus on each character’s accuracy, ensuring high-quality translations. This meticulous attention to detail is crucial for legal documents, where precision is paramount.

The Role of Legal Translators in Dubai

Legal translators in Dubai play a vital role in the city’s dynamic business environment. They are responsible for translating legal documents, contracts, and other official papers that must comply with both local and international laws. The demand for legal translation in Dubai is driven by the city’s position as a global business hub, with many multinational companies and expatriates requiring these services.

Word-Based Pricing Model

In Dubai, legal translators typically charge based on the number of words in the source text. This word-based pricing model is widely adopted across many English-speaking countries and has specific advantages in the context of Dubai’s multilingual environment.

1. Clarity and Simplicity: Word-based pricing is straightforward and easy for clients to understand. Most people are familiar with counting words, making it a transparent and easily verifiable method for billing.

2. Industry Standard: Word-based pricing aligns with international standards for translation services, facilitating easier comparison of quotes and services across different providers and regions. This consistency is particularly important in a global city like Dubai, where businesses and individuals seek services from various international vendors.

3. Document Analysis: Legal documents in English and many other languages tend to have a relatively uniform word length. Word-based pricing ensures that the cost reflects the actual workload involved in translating documents of varying complexity and length.

4. Efficiency and Productivity: Translators can quickly estimate and bill their services using word count tools available in most word processing software. This efficiency helps streamline the billing process and reduces administrative overhead.

Comparing the Two Models: Character-Based vs. Word-Based Pricing

Both character-based and word-based pricing models have their merits and are suited to their respective linguistic and regional contexts. Understanding the differences between these models can help clients make informed decisions when seeking translation services in Istanbul and Dubai.

1. Fairness and Accuracy: In languages with long compound words, such as Turkish, character-based pricing can be more accurate and fair, reflecting the true effort required to translate the text. In contrast, for languages with shorter and more uniform word lengths, word-based pricing is simpler and equally fair.

2. Transparency: Word-based pricing offers a clear and straightforward method for clients to verify the cost of translation services. Character-based pricing, while precise, may require clients to understand the nuances of character counting, especially when dealing with non-Roman scripts.

3. Cultural and Legal Context: Pricing models are often influenced by local customs and legal requirements. In Istanbul, the character-based model aligns with the Turkish legal framework and linguistic characteristics. In Dubai, the word-based model fits the city’s international business environment and diverse linguistic needs.

4. Client Preferences: Clients’ preferences also play a role in determining the pricing model. Some clients may prefer the simplicity of word-based pricing, while others might appreciate the precision of character-based billing.

Implications for Clients and Translators

Understanding the reasons behind different pricing models helps clients navigate the legal translation landscape more effectively. Whether in Istanbul or Dubai, clients should consider the following when engaging with legal translators:

1. Clear Communication: Discussing pricing models upfront with translators can help avoid misunderstandings. Clients should ask for detailed explanations of how costs are calculated and what is included in the quoted price.

2. Detailed Estimates: Requesting detailed estimates based on the chosen pricing model can provide transparency and allow for accurate budgeting. Clients should ensure that all potential costs, including revisions and additional services, are outlined in the estimate.

3. Quality Assurance: Regardless of the pricing model, the quality of the translation should be a top priority. Clients should seek translators with proven expertise in legal translation and a track record of accuracy and reliability.

4. Cultural Competence: Engaging translators who understand the cultural and legal nuances of both the source and target languages can enhance the quality and effectiveness of the translation. This is particularly important for legal documents, where cultural context can influence legal interpretations.


The different pricing models used by sworn translators in Istanbul and legal translators in Dubai reflect the unique linguistic, cultural, and legal contexts of these cities. In Istanbul, yeminli tercüman quote pricing based on characters, a method that aligns with the structure of the Turkish language and ensures precise and fair billing. In Dubai, legal translators use word-based pricing, a straightforward and internationally recognized model that suits the city’s diverse and global business environment.

Understanding these pricing strategies helps clients make informed decisions when seeking legal translation services, ensuring that they receive accurate, reliable, and cost-effective translations. Whether navigating the detailed character counts in Istanbul or the clear word counts in Dubai, the key is to engage with skilled and experienced translators who can deliver high-quality legal translations tailored to the specific needs of each region.

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