Italian to English Free Translation Guide: Italian English Translation Cultural Checklist

Planning an Italian English translation? The Italian to English Free Translation Guide offers a checklist of points to look at to make sure your translation is culturally appropriate. At the bottom of the page, you'll also find tips on reducing translation costs and other helpful resources. (No, I wanted an Italian to English free translation tool.)

Localization checklist for your Italian English translation

In addition to translating the language of your text, you may need to adapt the content to make it suitable for another culture. This type of cultural adaptation is called "localization." Here are some examples of points to look out for.

- Weights and measurements. You may need to convert these into the metric system or vice versa.

- Number format. For instance, in the U.S., the thousands place is marked with a comma (1,000), while in Italy, it is marked with a period (1.000). The opposite applies to decimals, which are written with points in the U.S. (0.5) and with commas in Italy (0,5).

- Date format. In the U.S., dates are often written month-day-year; in Italy, they are written day-month-year.

- Currencies and prices. You may have to adjust monetary amounts and symbols for local prices and currencies. Be aware that the symbol $ is used for a number of currencies, including U.S dollars, Canadian dollars, Hong Kong dollars, Mexican pesos, etc., so if there is any chance of confusion, clarify which currency applies.

- Political and cultural figures, political parties, bands, historical references, TV shows, current events, references to specific cities, neighborhoods, locations, etc. These may need to be adapted or explained.

- Holidays, important dates. Different holidays are celebrated in different countries. The same holiday is often celebrated in different ways or even on different dates. For example, Father's Day is celebrated on March in Italy, while in the U.S., it is celebrated in June.

- Seasons, working hours, mealtimes, the academic calendar, vacation times. The rhythm of life is different in different countries. For example, Italian meal times are generally later than in many parts of the U.S.

- Religions, races, ethnic groups. These vary from country to country, as do cultural standards of how topics related to religion and race can be discussed.

- Products, brands. Not only product brands but the types of products people commonly buy and own are different depending on the country.

- Punctuation, typesetting conventions. Do not let your graphic designer "correct" or "standardize" the punctuation or typesetting in a translation without consulting with a native speaker, as there are often differences between languages in terms of punctuation marks and rules. For example, the type of quotation marks used in Italian are different from those used in English.

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