Wagtail uses Transifex to translate the content for the admin interface. Our goal is to ensure that Wagtail can be used by those who speak many different languages. Translation of admin content is a great way to contribute without needing to know how to write code.


For translations and internationalisation of content made with Wagtail see Internationalization.

Translation workflow

Wagtail is localised (translated) using Django’s translation system and the translations are provided to and managed by Transifex, a web platform that helps organisations coordinate translation projects.

Translations from Transifex are only integrated into the repository at the time of a new release. When a release is close to being ready there will be a RC (Release Candidate) for the upcoming version and the translations will be exported to Transifex.

During this RC period, usually around two weeks, there will be a chance for all the translators to update and add new translations. We will also notify the #translators channel in the Wagtail Slack group at this time.

These new translations are imported into Wagtail for any subsequent RC and the final release. If translations reach a threshold of about 80%, languages are added to the default list of languages users can choose from.

How to help out with translations

  • Join the Wagtail community on Slack

  • Search through the channels to join the #translator channel and introduce yourself

  • Go to Transifex

  • Click on start for free

  • Fill in your Username, Email and Password

  • Agree to the terms and conditions

  • Click on free trial or join an existing organisation

  • Join Wagtail and see the list of languages on the dashboard

  • Request access to become a member of the language team you want to work with on Slack (mention your Transifex username)

  • A view resources button appears when you hover over the ready to use part on the right side of the page

  • Click on the button to get access to the resources available

  • This takes you to the language section

  • This page has a translation panel on the right and a list of strings to be translated on the left

  • To translate a project, select it and enter your translation in the translation panel

  • Save the translation using the translation button on the panel

Marking strings for translation

In code, strings can be marked for translation with using Django’s translation system, using gettext or gettext_lazy in Python and blocktranslate, translate, and _(" ") in templates.

In both Python and templates, make sure to always use named placeholder. In addition, in Python, only use the printf style formatting. This is to ensure compatibility with Transifex and help translators in their work.

Translations within Python

from django.utils.translation import gettext_lazy as _

# Do this: printf style + named placeholders
_("Page %(page_title)s with status %(status)s") % {"page_title": page.title, "status": page.status_string}

# Do not use anonymous placeholders
_("Page %s with status %s") % (page.title, page.status_string)
_("Page {} with status {}").format(page.title, page.status_string)

# Do not use positional placeholders
_("Page {0} with status {1}").format(page.title, page.status_string)

# Do not use new style
_("Page {page_title} with status {status}").format(page_title=page.title, status=page.status_string)

# Do not interpolate within the gettext call
_("Page %(page_title)s with status %(status)s" % {"page_title": page.title, "status": page.status_string})
_("Page {page_title} with status {status}".format(page_title=page.title, status=page.status_string))

# Do not use f-string
_(f"Page {page.title} with status {page.status_string}")

Translations with templates

You can import i18n and then translate with the translate/blocktranslate template tags. You can also translate string literals passed as arguments to tags and filters by using the familiar _() syntax.

{% extends "wagtailadmin/base.html" %}
{% load i18n %}
<!-- preliminary lines of code -->

<!-- Do this to use the translate tag. -->
{% translate "Any string of your choosing" %}

<!-- Do this to use the blocktranslate tag. -->
{% blocktranslate %}
    A multi-line translatable literal.
{% endblocktranslate %}

<!-- Do these to translate string literals passed to tags and filters. -->

{% some_tag _("Any string of your choosing") %}
{% some_tag arg_of_some_tag=_("Any string of your choosing") %}
{% some_tag value_of_some_tag|filter=_("Any string of your choosing") value|yesno:_("yes,no") %}

<!-- A typical example of when to use translation of string literals is -->
{% translate "example with literal" as var_name %}
{% some_tag arg_of_some_tag=var_name %}

<!-- If the variable is only ever used once, you could do this instead -->
{% some_tag arg_of_some_tag=_("example with literal") %}

Note: In Wagtail code, you might see trans and blocktrans instead of translate and blocktranslate. This still works fine. trans and blocktrans were the tags earlier on in Django, but were replaced in Django 3.1.

Additional resources