Experts in Tourism Translation
At Comunica, we have ample experience and expertise in providing travel and tourism translation services. We work with high-profile clients in the sector including a market-leading bookings platform, a major European airline and a large vacation rentals company with properties all across Northern Europe.
As a result, we know what it takes to craft a successful translation for the tourism sector and we have our finger on the pulse of new trends and changing demands in this field.
What Is Important in Tourism Translation?
There are a number of things that need to be considered when creating a great tourism translation.
The first is that the language used typically needs to be catchy and appealing.
Tourism texts are often about selling a dream – painting that picture of a pristine, white sandy beach with turquoise waters, hot-dog legs in frame and a cocktail in hand. Served in a hollowed-out coconut with a cute little umbrella on top, of course. Or that charming cobbled street between colourful Medieval buildings, capped in a dusting of snow that enchantingly reflects the bright winter’s sunlight.
Which is to say, the words on the page need to create an image in the reader’s mind, and not just clunkily replace words in one language for words in another.
Getting this right takes artistic flair and a certain creative license, but of course always with the customer’s end goal firmly in focus.
Localisation in Tourism Translation
Another key element of tourism translation is localisation.
Texts are often written with a domestic market in mind and so the translation process will involve a certain degree of adaptation in order to ensure the end result is relevant to its target readers. This goes beyond simply converting kilometres into miles, kroner into euros or kilograms into pounds.
Rather, it’s more like a process of padding out and filling in the blanks.
Take Møn, for example. As everyone in Denmark knows, Møn is holiday heaven. To the Scandinavian ear, Møn means gorgeous nature, inviting waters, white chalk cliffs and beaches to die for. But to an English speaker, Møn is little more than three letters with a line through the middle. So when a Danish text makes reference to this island paradise, it is important that the translator not only carries across the name, but also a sense of what makes it so special and worth visiting.
The same also goes for more practical matters such as distances and geographic location.
Spaniards know very well how far San Sebastián is from Bilbao, for example, but that 100 km journey might not be so self-evident to potential visitors in the UK or across the Atlantic.
The translator’s job is to step into the shoes of the reader and think through what will be obvious and what might need spelling out. That is one of the keys to crafting a perfect tourism translation.
Details, details, details
Tourism texts do not exist simply to sell. They are also practical pieces of writing which convey important information – details that readers then use to make important decisions about where to go, where to stay and where to spend their money.
This means they need to strike a careful balance between being punchy and sales-oriented on the one hand, but also sober and accurate on the other. The text shouldn’t oversell or overpromise, and it needs to give the reader all the accurate information they need to make their decision.
The translator’s job is to strike this balance and to make sure that key details are conveyed both clearly and accurately.
Since the pandemic, tourism translation has also become a great deal more technical. Travellers need to be aware of new and changing rules around vaccination documentation, test results, passenger location forms and so on. This means texts sometimes need to be updated more frequently, and translators need to take extra care to make sure their work is accurate and unequivocal.
Order your tourism translation today
No matter whether you represent a hotel, resort, destination or travel provider, we are your one-stop tourism translation company.
We know what it takes to craft a successful translation for the travel and tourism sector and we will be happy to talk you through the process and help you decide what content to translate and into what languages. We can also provide original and multilingual copywriting services for the translation and tourism sector.