Chinese Interpreter Services: Cantonese Vs. Mandarin

Chinese Interpreter Services: Cantonese Vs. Mandarin

Chinese Interpreter Services: Cantonese and Mandarin

One of the commonly asked questions is the difference between Cantonese and Mandarin.

For a native speaker, they know exactly the differences. Yet, for the non-native speaker, they sound almost the same.

In case you are going to a formal occasion in China, you can always use Chinese interpreter services

But if you are curious about the differences, at least these are four important keys that you should know before taking the services.

Chinese interpreter services
Chinese interpreter services

Chinese Interpreter Services: Four Key Differences Between the Two Languages

1. Position of the Language

Let’s start with the position of the language. Both are part of the Chinese language, yet different.

To make it easier to understand, imagine the Chinese language as a type of apples. 

Thus, you can say that Mandarin is a red apple while Cantonese is a green apple. 

At the same time, it can be said that Chinese is an umbrella that encompasses multiple languages/dialects such as Mandarin, Cantonese, Hakka, etc.

2. Cantonese is the Main Dialect

Here Cantonese is the main dialect that fewer people speak it. However, it is commonly used in very international cities. 

What cities are they? mostly Hong Kong and Macau. 

It happens that this dialect is spoken quite widely overseas which makes a lot of English to Chinese translation services available. 

In some cases, if you are going to Chinatown, highly possible 50% of them will use Cantonese. 

At the same time, this dialect tends to be used by the older generation.

3. Mandarin is the Newer Main Dialect

Then how about Mandarin? It is the same, but the dialect is the most widely spoken across China. 

That means, most people in mainland China tend to use this dialect to communicate as a mother tongue. 

It is worth noting that this dialect only has 4 dialects, and taught in China’s schools since the Mandarin requirement started in the late 1990s. 

It is also used for Chinese translators for business. If you hear “speaking Chinese”, most likely they refer to Mandarin.

Chinese interpreter services
Chinese interpreter services

4. Written in the Same Way, Yet Different in Speaking

The last key is different in speaking. Even though both are written in almost the same ways and they look alike, they have different grammar and vocab. 

However, when it is spoken they are completely different. In many cases, the Cantonese speakers won’t be able to understand Mandarin and vice versa. 

That is why choosing the right Chinese interpreter services is important for your occasion. 

So it works and progresses as intended while avoiding a misunderstanding. Those are the key differences you should know beforehand. 

Even though you are going to use the service, it is better to know the difference. Thus, you can find the best-suited interpreter.

To conclude, it best said that both are part of the Chinese language. 

However, both are the main dialect used in a different location by a different generation. 

While they look the same, they sound different. That is why using an interpreter as a helper is a good choice for you.