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Translation services for train and railway: bridging language barriers

AAC Global at Elmia Nordic Rail October 10-12

Some people might be surprised to learn that many of our largest customers operate in the rail industry. We are always keen to learn from these companies how their business is evolving, what kinds of challenges and opportunities they are facing, and what projects they have in the pipeline.


The more we can learn about their future needs, the better we can serve them. In an effort to keep our ear to the ground, we chose to exhibit at this year’s Elmia Nordic Rail in Jönköping.


Many of the companies, both exhibitors and visitors, communicated a concrete need for specialized translation services.

AAC was the only dedicated language service provider/translation agency out of the approximately 270 exhibitors at the fair. Some of the other participants included major players such as Bombardier Transportation, Alstom, Sweco Rail, Stadler and the Swedish Transport Administration.

Four representatives from the AAC office in Kista, including Managing Partner Tommy Tengvall, travelled down to beautiful Jönköping, which is situated right next to impressive Lake Vättern for this exciting industry event.

While many visitors came by the colorful AAC stand to get advice on how to improve their communication with international customers, the AAC representatives also took the opportunity to visit new potential customers in the vast two-story exhibition hall.


AAC Global has been a trusted language services partner of the train and railway industry for more than 25 years


Many of the companies at the bustling fair, both exhibitors and visitors, communicated a concrete need for specialized translation services in one way or another. These companies fall into several sub-categories:

  • Some handle their translations on their own due to limited volumes or because they do not trust anyone else to understand the specific terminology used in their material. The problem with this type of in-house translation work is that translation memories and termbases are generally not used, which means the process is time consuming for the employees doing the translations. This is ultimately expensive for the company.
  • Some use several different translation agencies or providers, and expressed a desire to consolidate and simplify the purchasing process.
  • Others engage one of our competitors. Some were seemingly happy with their current translation agency and some were not.
  • In some cases the companies relied on freelance translators for translations into all of the respective languages. This can naturally be a viable solution up to certain volumes, but it also makes the company more vulnerable in several ways. When there are very few providers, or in some cases only one, for the language in question, large volumes of text cannot be delivered within short time frames. The freelance translator might be busy with other projects or unable to take on translation assignments for some other reason.
  • It is important to be aware of the fact that agencies, apart from having access to a larger pool of competent translators, also offer price discounts based on repetitions and partial matches in texts on a long-term basis. This is not always the case when working with freelancers.


The train industry is full of specialized terminology, so the choice of translation partner really matters


Quite a few companies were actually on the lookout for a solution for their multilingual communication needs, either right away or in the near future. It is fair to say that the majority of the enterprises we encountered are using translation services on a regular basis. Their translation needs pertain not only to documentation such as manuals, etc., but also to e-learning material and presentation training.

Most visitors were happily surprised to learn that there actually was a translation agency present at the fair. They were especially interested in hearing about AAC Global’s extensive experience in the field since the train industry is full of specialized terminology, which means the choice of translation partner really matters.


Linkedin_en.jpgRead more of Anna's insights into the world of specialized train and rail translations from her blog.

In fact, AAC Global has been a trusted language services partner of the train and railway industry for more than 25 years. We have translated technical documentation, safety regulations and manuals for some of the biggest train manufacturers, in addition to considerable amounts of documentation for large-scale railway and subway construction projects.

Most of the exhibitors displayed big industrial products, machines and technical equipment, including models of the very latest trains. The head of sales at one of the largest train manufactures, however, was disappointed that he was not allowed to bring actual rolling stock to the fair.




Having no shiny train sets or other impressive machinery with which to attract the attention of visitors, AAC Global as a professional vendor of multilingual communication services faced the challenge of quickly communicating what we offer to the people passing by. To help out with this, we showcased a looping video displaying our expertise in graphic design, live video production and 3D animations.

Most important of all, however, was naturally having the opportunity to meet with current and prospective customers in real life, and to give them a sense of the professionalism and experience that is at the very core of AAC Global and its skilled employees.

You can read more about AAC Global’s translation and localization services here:




Elmia Nordic Rail is held in parallel with Elmia Future Transport and Elmia Nordic Road. Together they make up a complete arena for infrastructure, transport and logistical issues. Read more here: https://www.elmia.se/en/nordicrail/For-press/News-rss/tomorrows-infrastructure-in-focus-at-elmia/

Localization Specialized translation Translation memory Translation services

Anna Segerpalm

Anna Segerpalm

Anna is a language specialist with a marketing background, and she has substantial experience in writing business texts. She works as a marketing coordinator as well as a content creator and blogger and she believes strongly in content marketing and the value of producing engaging, actionable content. Outside work she enjoys spending time with her two lovely children as well as jogging, reading and enjoying the cultural and culinary pleasures of beautiful Stockholm.

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