4 tips to take advantage of Regex for your translations!

Regex, or the short term for Regular Expressions, is a short representation for a set of strings (certain amount of text). These sets are a great way of filtering data in a complex manner, but because there are a variety of steps to follow, they can be a bit tricky to put into work. The most common uses for Regular Expressions are:

  • Verifying string structure

  • Extracting substrings from a set of strings already structured

  • Finding, replacing and/or rearranging string parts

  • Splitting strings into other sets

Since Regex works on characters, not words, here are some examples (with visuals) on how to find, replace, and check different errors in a general translation (for different languages):

Find and Replace- A replacement text is that which each regular expression match is replaced with when searching for an error.

Option 1:

(?<![a-zA-Z\)]) (?=\d)

Option 2 (use this to work around the bug in Trados regarding lookahead and lookbehind functions.):

Find ([^a-zA-Z)]) (\d)Replace $1,$2

FR to EN: Find any space between two numbers in the target. Replace with a comma.

Test with https://regex101.com/


ES to EN: Find ¡ or ¿ in the target, replace with nothing.

Test with https://freeformatter.com/regex-tester.html

Error Checking- Decide what errors to correct (in this case allowing numbers as your character type).


EN-GB to EN-US: Check numbers before the first slash in a date. Report Error if it’s the same.

Test with https://regex101.com/

Checking French quotation mark errors


EN to >FR: Check English or American quotation marks, preceded by or followed by a space, to avoid the apostrophe (‘). Report Error if it’s the same.

Test with https://regex101.com/


In this blog, we provided character examples to look for and replace (or erase) when using Regex

  • Commas “,”

  • Exclamation and question marks (for ES) “¡!” “¿,?”

  • Numbers

  • Quotation marks errors (for FR) “ ‘ ”

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