Translating Numbers, Seasons, Holidays and Places

Holidays and Events

Many new Miami translation workers frequently make the mistake of not indicating the date when discussing a particular holiday.  As a result, there can be confusion when discussing holidays that are observed in various countries, share a common name, but take part on different dates.  A few common examples include Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day, Labor Day and Memorial Day.

Numbers in Thousands

Similar to the use of a decimal, large numbers are also written differently across the world.  For example, a comma is used in the United States to separate the hundreds from the thousands place.  However, other countries either make use of a period or a comma.

Geographic Place Names

In nearly all cases, experienced Washington D.C. French translation workers should avoid the use of names that refer to places.  While most Americans know that “Sin City” refers to Las Vegas and that “The Big Apple” refers to New York, relatively few know that “Athens of the North” refers to Edinburgh or that “The Granite City” refers to Aberdeen, Scotland.  In the same respect, many people in the Middle East don’t know that Miami is often called “The Magic City” or “Little Cuba”.

Metric and Imperial Units of Measure

For the most part, the two main measurement systems include the Imperial and the Metric.  The United States is the last major economy that still makes wide us of the Imperial system.  For most translations, it is a wise idea to convert all measurements to the system used in the country of the target audience.  If the translation will be used in multiple countries where both systems are used, it is advisable to provide both measurements.  For instance, a manufacturer of hardware components might state the dimension of a screw as 5-inches (12.7 centimeters).


When it is summer in the North America, it is winter in South America.  Because the seasons differ in timing based on location, the months of the year should always be used in place of the name of a season.

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