Freelancing Freedom: 5 Favorite Perks

The hospital waiting room was full. The other parents kept one eye on their littles and another on their phones. But instead of scrolling away the time, I was working on my laptop. That day, I was translating an instruction manual for a major Mexican airline. This was our fourth appointment in three weeks, and I was so thankful that I could earn money while waiting for our names to be called. Freelancing definitely has its perks! These are some of my favorites:

Freedom to set your own hours

As long as you meet your deadlines, freelancing gives you the freedom to work around school and family obligations. This means that you can schedule your interpretation assignments around school pick-up and drop-off. You don’t have to ask your boss for time off for snow days or if a child is home sick. Since I’ve homeschooled since 2011, I have been able to schedule translation deliveries around lessons, field trips, or choir practice. I can take remote interpretation jobs while the kids are engaged in independent learning.

Perk 1: Freedom to choose your projects

Even after you specialize, you’ll have many different projects coming into your inbox. Freelancing means you can choose the ones that interest you, or that best fit your schedule or your income goals. For example, as a life sciences editor, one client sends interesting projects but pays a lower rate. They also stipulate a short turnaround, because they’re located on the opposite side of the planet. I have another in Europe that pays more, with delivery times that are closer to my workday. Since one of my income goals is to earn more in less time (and not work after 5:30 pm), I can choose the projects that pay the best rate and fit my time zone.

Perk 2: Freedom to work from home (or anywhere)

Another major perk of being a freelance translator and interpreter is the ability to be location-independent. When we were based in Mexico, we could spend a few months in Canada, and vice versa. As long as I have a laptop and an internet connection, I can work from anywhere. With the rise in remote interpretation, I’ve provided language services for a medical appointment in Canada while traveling in Mexico. I’ve also provided simultaneous interpretation for a virtual trade mission in Latin America while at home in Halifax.

Perk 3: Freedom to set your own rates

If you work in-house or for a traditional employer, they will decide how much you will earn. As a freelancer, you set your own rates based on how much you need for your living expenses and saving for retirement. For many years, I worked on high-volume projects at low rates. Don’t be like me! When I decided to earn more in less time, I found new clients, set higher rates, and scaled back my hours. Working less and earning more gave me some much-needed rest and peace of mind!

Perk 4: Freedom to set your own goals

Your career path is your choice! When you start offering language services, you’ll find that there are many different areas of specialization. You can take courses on language, business, technology, and much more. There’s new tech to learn and different types of services you can offer. As a freelancer, you can chart your own path to professional development and financial independence.

By the time our name was called in that hospital waiting room, I had learned and translated the hand signals that ground crews use to guide planes into position. Best of all, I was learning and earning while taking my daughters to an important medical appointment.

Freelancing gives me the freedom to take care of my family and earn money on my own schedule. Wouldn’t you like a taste of freedom?

A few years ago, I sat tapping away at my laptop. I was working on an instruction manual for the ground crew of a major Mexican airline, and I was making good progress. At one point, I stood up to stretch and looked around. Scattered about the hospital waiting room, there were other parents like myself, but they were scrolling away on their phones (or listlessly watching their kids scroll). Some may have been trying to ignore the Wiggles on the TV set in the corner (or wondering, like I was, just how much they get paid to act like that). I was so grateful that as a freelancer, I could be learning and earning while waiting for our name to be called! Here are some of the other reasons why I love freelancing:

Scroll to Top