What Makes French Translation Special?

Table of Contents

French is one of the most commonly spoken languages in the world. In this age of globalization, French translation services are getting more and more attention.

In this article, Thao & Co. delves into the challenges and requirements for translators as well as the rates for French translation services.

What are the challenges of French translation?

French is the 5th most commonly spoken language in the world. According to the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (also known as La Francophonie), there are more than 321 million French speakers worldwide.

Despite being a direct descendant of Latin, French is also influenced by other languages, thus, enriching its grammar and vocabulary.

The French language is known for its interesting grammar system. However, this has created many challenges for learners and translators alike.


In English, nouns are not marked according to gender. Instead, pronouns or possessive determiners (for example he, she, his, her, and so on) are used to show gender.

But in French, all nouns have a gender. They can be masculine, feminine, or in some cases, neuter.

This is a sticky grammar point for learners and can lead to unwanted misunderstandings and mistakes if translators lack sufficient language proficiency.

Tenses and Conjugations

Another difference between French and other languages is its tenses and conjugations.

In Vietnamese, the concept of conjugation is virtually non-existent. In English, there are 3 basic tenses to denote the past, present, and future with 12 possible variations.

However, French is much more complex and has a total of 20 tenses classified into 6 modes. For each tense, there are irregular verbs that learners have to learn by heart. For example, there are already 19 irregular verbs just for the simple future tense.

Singular and plural nouns

In Vietnamese, there is no singular or plural form for nouns. Singular and plural noun forms in English are quite simple: most singular nouns are made plural by adding ‘s’ or ‘es’.

However, the rules for singular and plural forms are much more complex in French. Plural nouns can be formed by adding ‘s’, ‘x’, ‘es’ to singular nouns, changing ‘al’ ending to ‘aux’, or in some cases, making no changes at all.

Moreover, many irregular plural forms do not follow the general rules. This can present significant difficulties for learners since singular and plural forms affect adjective declension, verb conjugation, and more. Even a single mistake can cause the translation to deviate from the source text.

French Translation - Thao & Co.

Required skills in French translation

Despite being a popular language, not every French learner can be a good French translator. To produce accurate and quality translations, translators have to meet these requirements:

  1. Exceptional language skills: As mentioned, to master the French language, translators must have extensive knowledge of its vocabulary and grammar.
  2. Appropriate identification of the register and writing style in the source text: Clients may seek French translation services for various documents such as technical documents, contracts, advertisement slogans, and more. Depending on the source text and the client’s purpose, the translator will have to make suitable adjustments.
  3. ● Expertise in French culture: French culture is influenced by many other cultures like Italian or Spanish, reflected through many aspects of this language. In the French lexicon, numerous loan words with origins that can be traced back to languages such as English, Greek, Italian, Spanish, etc. are used in fields like arts, technology, medicine, and many more. Acquiring a deep insight into French culture can also help translators understand French people’s way of thinking and language habits to produce fluent and natural translations that easily win over local readers.
  4. High learning agility and good research skills: Translation often requires extensive research of information and vocabulary, necessitating good research skills on the translator’s part. Oftentimes, translation projects are required to be completed within an agreed-upon timeline. This places heavy demands on translators to produce quality, accurate translations in as short an amount of time as possible, making good research skills a must-have quality.

Where to find certified French translation services?

Certified and notarized French translation services have received a lot of interest lately. Notarization is the process done by a notary public to authenticate the translations of your documents or papers. You can seek notarization services at these offices:

  1. Public notary offices: Justice divisions at district-level People’s committees
  2. Private notary offices: Any private notary offices in your locality.

Note that public notary offices notarize all types of papers and documents, while private notary offices can only notarize some specific types.

Although known as notarized translation offices, these offices do not usually provide translation services for different languages such as French. They only translate basic documents into common languages like English.

Latest rates for French translation services

How much does a Translation Cost? - Thao & Co.

The rates of French translation services are one of the main concerns for clients. However, it would be quite difficult to specify an exact number as the service rates are subject to fluctuation due to various factors such as:

  1. Length: The rates for French translation, as well as any other language translation services, are typically set per page or per word. Naturally, larger volumes mean higher translation costs and vice versa.
  2. Complexity: The purpose of usage for each French translation differs from client to client. Translations for documents in the fields of healthcare, technology, or finance and banking generally incur higher costs, as translators are required to have both linguistic expertise and in-depth knowledge of relevant terminologies. Moreover, translating such highly complex documents also demands more time and effort.
  3. Rarity: Alongside the factors mentioned, the rates for French translation services also depend on the rarity of the language pair involved. Rare language pairs with few available translators have relatively higher costs compared to more common language pairs.
  4. Urgency: The urgency of the project can also significantly affect the service rates. The tighter the deadline is, the higher the translation cost will be.

Professional French translation services

Nowadays, the demand for French translation services is continuously growing. However, many clients are having a hard time choosing a quality and reliable translation company.

If you are looking for professional French translation services, Thao & Co. can be your trusted partner.

We specialize in delivering high-quality translations for all types of documents. Our linguists have exceptional language skills, professional degrees in French Studies, and years of experience in many fields.

Translation Services - Thao & Co.

Whether it is creative translation or notarized translation, our linguists are committed to delivering the finest work. Thao & Co.’s expert team can handle high-volume translation projects while ensuring translation consistency, providing top-quality services for B2B customers.

Moreover, you can rest assured that all project information will be safeguarded by a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) signed by every translator and expert. We utilize a clear and transparent workflow, with no third-party involvement.

All of Thao & Co.’s clients will receive access to our proprietary platform where you can easily manage project files and the overall progress.

Want to learn more about our services? Please leave your information on our Get a Quote page. Our consultants will be happy to answer any of your questions.

Key takeaways

Above is everything on the challenges and requirements for French translators Thao & Co. want to share with you. Known as the most romantic language in the world, the French language is loved and studied by many.

French translation requires a high level of language proficiency and in-depth knowledge of French culture. We hope that this article has provided useful information to help you choose the best French translation agency for your needs.

Source: Thao & Company
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