1) Why is translation important in the travel and tourism industry?

Tourism is the main source of income for many countries, such as Egypt, Greece, Spain, Malaysia and Thailand, and many island nations, such as The Bahamas, Fiji, Maldives, Philippines. Tourism and travel activities have become a vital driving force in creating economic growth and employment.

According to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer, international tourist arrivals have grown by 4.3% in the first eight months of 2015. International tourists (overnight visitors) travelling the world between January and August 2015 reached 810 million. 33 million more than in the same period of 2014!

These figures show that the tourism industry still is one of the largest and most dynamic industries in today’s global economy.

Customers are more diverse than ever and expect information to be presented to them in a way that they understand. Therefore, tourism translation is becoming a key factor to unlocking potential customers.

When looking at tourism as a confluence of cultures and languages, the business translation services industry becomes an obvious and important tool, as well as a directly connected sector. The translator, therefore, as a mediator between languages and cultures, plays a key role in the achievement of effective communication and understanding with tourists.

The translation of tourist texts, such as:

  • Tourist guides
  • Brochures
  • Restaurant menus
  • Tourist accommodation catalogues,
  • Advertisements
  • Promotional posters

Means that tourists can communicate in, learn about, and get closer to the country they visit.

UK tourism:

In the UK, there is a huge and increasing demand to reach out to foreign tourists. With recognitions in the UK like ‘The City of Culture’, British cities, such as Bristol, Birmingham and Swansea are crying out to communicate with foreign tourists and reap the benefits of tourism. Having spent millions on redeveloping parts of their cities, benefiting from tourism through showcasing your city to the world is vital . Having access to interpreters 24/7 can help attract custom worldwide, at no extra cost for the company.

At Lingua Translations, we provide professional tourism translation and interpreting, guaranteed by our qualified and experienced linguists, who are specialists in this field.


2) Why is localisation important in this industry?

Translation is not only about translating content from one language to another. It is even truer when it comes to tourism translation. Marketing plays a great part in it, as well as localisation.

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Localisation is basically the art of adapting content to a specific culture. To appeal to the customer in this industry, a document or website has to communicate ideas of hospitality, respect and friendliness in a way that will “speak” to the customers.

Website localisation has become even more important in this industry! With the growth of online booking solutions, budget airlines and low-cost services, localisation is key. An informative and well localised website is a crucial factor to the booking process.

In fact, 42% of internet users say they never purchase products or services from websites that are not in their language! These surveys clearly demonstrate that customers generally prefer to learn about a product when it is adapted to their cultural environment and in their own language.

As a company where all employees are linguist experts, we fully understand the importance of localisation and the impact it can have on your business. We know how important a sector this is for businesses expanding abroad and the differences it can have on all aspects of your company. Not just commercial but also how your company is perceived by clients abroad and how you are seen as a global player internationally.


3) What are the translation challenges in this industry?

The main challenge in tourism translation is to be culturally accurate when providing information. While adding a bit of promotional content to entice the tourists. Translators must be aware of any political, cultural, historical and idiomatic issues and aspects, as well as various local names. They also have to be aware of industry-specific terminology, have perfect writing skills, and have a deep knowledge of the travel business and marketing.

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Tourism translators must be able to see through customers’ eyes. Whether they are travelling for business or leisure, or whether they are searching for a family trip or a romantic escape. It is important to use the appropriate adjectives(large, big, huge…) and the correct emotions.

What is the first thing target customers are looking for when booking their trip? To give you a simple example, a sunny and warm destination may not be advertised the same way for a British audience as it would be for a Spanish audience.

The quality of tourism translations directly affects the image of a country abroad, and the ‘brand’ of the country. This is very important for tourism marketing and advertising campaigns. Translations must be attractive and well expressed, since any error in translation can lead to disinterested potential tourists. With this in mind, all tourist texts should be professionally translated to attract future tourists, and contribute to the growth of this important sector. However, there is undoubtedly more work to be done.


4) Where is tourism translation used?

You would be surprised by how numerous translation opportunities are in the tourism industry. Here is a non-exhaustive list of documents (or TPMs -tourism promotional materials) that you could get translated. From art and culture, history and geography, to advertising and marketing, sport and leisure, food and wine … The list goes on!

– Brochures and flyers for national and regional tourist boards, tourist offices, national parks, museums, tour operators, hotels and restaurants…

– Guidebooks and visitor guides

– Travel, tourism and leisure websites

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– Museum and exhibition guides

– Newspaper/magazine articles

– Advertising and marketing materials

– Newsletters

– Contracts and correspondence

– Online databases

– Press releases

– Customer satisfaction surveys

– Welcome packs

– Official documents for tourism bodies

– Service descriptions

– Tour and Holiday guides

– Audio and Visual material

– Complete catalogue, advertising campaign, social media or information material


5) What about interpreting in the tourism industry?

Tourism is essentially travel for leisure, recreation or business purposes and language barriers are extremely common. Interpreters are often needed for emergency situations, business expansion purposes or simply just as an option for customers.

Interpreting is a popular requirement for hoteliers, tourist boards and tour operators. Feedback we received in our agency is that it gives them the confidence to be able to deal with all their customers and adds to a hotel’s many functions.

Many of the areas of the tourist industry require interpreters intermittently and in urgent situations. For this we suggest telephone interpreting as an option. Tourists visit their destinations from all over the world and having an interpreter at the press of a button is such a useful option to have and will save a lot of time, worry and cost for everyone.

Lingua Translations offers a telephone interpreting service which is simple to set up and with no minimum usage time or set up costs. Perfect for those tricky moments where language barriers can be overcome within a matter of minutes.

For more information, to find out why you should choose Lingua Translations as your preferred language service provider, or to enquire about our telephone interpreting services and professional interpreting services, simply contact us on: Tel: +44 (0)1792 469990 or email: info@lingua-translations.com