Living in Taiwan offers a unique experience if you’re after adventure and culture. From the bustling city streets to the serene countryside, Taiwan has a lot to offer.
In this article, we will explore ten essential aspects of living in Taiwan. These include the cost of living, healthcare options, transportation, finding accommodation, language and communication, cultural etiquette, work opportunities, the education system, and safety and security.
Discover what makes Taiwan an incredible place to call home.
Good To Know
- Taiwan offers a relatively low cost of living, with affordable groceries, household goods, and entertainment expenses.
- The healthcare system in Taiwan is renowned for its accessibility and comprehensive coverage through the national health insurance system.
- Taiwan has a well-developed public transportation system, including buses, metro lines, and rental bicycles, promoting eco-friendly transportation options.
- Finding suitable accommodation in Taiwan requires careful consideration of location, access to public transportation, and amenities.
The Cost of Living in Taiwan
The cost of living in Taiwan is generally lower compared to other developed countries. Groceries in Taiwan are affordable, with a wide range of options available at local markets and supermarkets. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and seafood are abundant and reasonably priced. Plus, household goods and basic necessities are relatively inexpensive.
Entertainment expenses in Taiwan can vary depending on individual preferences. However, compared to other countries, entertainment options such as dining out, going to the movies, or attending concerts are generally more affordable. There are also many free or low-cost activities available, such as exploring night markets, visiting parks, and participating in cultural festivals.
Healthcare and Insurance in Taiwan
Healthcare in Taiwan is provided through a national health insurance system, ensuring access to affordable medical services for all residents. The healthcare system in Taiwan is renowned for its accessibility and comprehensive coverage.
Under the National Health Insurance (NHI) program, all citizens and foreign residents are required to enroll and contribute to the insurance fund. This ensures that everyone has access to a wide range of medical services, including doctor visits, hospital stays, prescription drugs, and preventive care.
The NHI coverage is extensive, with a high reimbursement rate for medical expenses. In addition, the system is known for its efficiency and low administrative costs. Taiwan’s healthcare system has consistently been ranked among the top in the world, providing peace of mind to residents and ensuring that they receive the medical care they need.
Transportation in Taiwan
Sometimes, people in Taiwan rely on public transportation, but they also use private vehicles for their daily commute. Public transportation in Taiwan is known for its efficiency and convenience.
Here are three important things to know about transportation in Taiwan:
- Extensive Public Transportation Network: Taiwan has a well-developed public transportation system that includes buses, metro lines, and high-speed trains. The metro system in major cities like Taipei and Kaohsiung is particularly popular due to its extensive coverage and affordability.
- Easy Access to Rental Bicycles: Taiwan promotes eco-friendly transportation options, and rental bicycles are readily available in many cities. The YouBike system allows people to rent bicycles for short trips, making it a convenient and healthy way to get around.
- Driving in Taiwan: While public transportation is widely used, driving is also common in Taiwan. However, it’s important to note that traffic can be congested, especially in urban areas. Plus, driving in Taiwan requires an International Driving Permit for foreign residents, and traffic rules and signage may differ from other countries.
Finding Accommodation in Taiwan
One important aspect of living in Taiwan is finding suitable accommodation, and individuals will typically have several options to choose from.
When it comes to finding accommodation in Taiwan, there are a few tips that can make the apartment hunting process easier.
Firstly, it’s recommended to start the search online by browsing through real estate websites or using mobile apps specifically designed for apartment hunting in Taiwan. These platforms often provide detailed information about the available properties, including photos, floor plans, and rental prices.
Another useful tip is to consider the location carefully. Taiwan has a well-developed public transportation system, so it’s essential to choose an area with easy access to public transportation, schools, supermarkets, and other amenities.
Lastly, it’s advisable to visit the apartment in person before making a decision to ensure that it meets all the requirements and preferences.
Language and Communication in Taiwan
When living in Taiwan, you can effectively navigate the language and communication barriers by learning basic Mandarin phrases and utilizing translation apps.
Mandarin Chinese is the official language of Taiwan, and most people in the country can understand and speak it to some extent. However, there may still be some language barriers, especially in rural areas or when dealing with older locals who might speak local dialects.
To overcome these barriers, it’s helpful to learn some basic Mandarin phrases such as greetings, directions, and common phrases for daily interactions. Plus, translation apps can be a handy tool for communication, as they can help translate written text or even facilitate real-time conversations.
Understanding and adapting to the language and communication practices in Taiwan will greatly enhance the overall living experience in the country.
Food and Dining in Taiwan
Taiwan offers a wide variety of delicious cuisine, and you can experience the vibrant food culture by exploring the night markets and local eateries. Taiwanese cuisine is known for its unique flavors and diverse culinary traditions. From traditional street food to high-end restaurants, there’s something for everyone in Taiwan.
Some popular dishes include beef noodle soup, stinky tofu, and bubble tea. Night markets, such as Shilin and Raohe, are must-visit destinations for food lovers, offering a wide range of affordable and tasty snacks.
In addition, Taiwan is home to several renowned restaurants, such as Din Tai Fung, famous for its xiao long bao (soup dumplings), and Yongkang Beef Noodles, known for its flavorful beef noodle soup.
Whether you’re a local or a visitor, Taiwan’s food scene is sure to leave you satisfied.
Cultural Etiquette in Taiwan
Visitors and residents in Taiwan frequently encounter cultural etiquette that emphasizes respect and politeness in social interactions. Understanding and adhering to these cultural norms is important to avoid causing offense or misunderstanding.
Here are three key aspects of cultural etiquette in Taiwan:
- Greetings: When meeting someone for the first time, it’s customary to offer a slight bow or a handshake. Use both hands to present business cards or gifts as a sign of respect. Addressing people by their title and last name is considered polite.
- Gestures: Avoid pointing with your index finger, as it’s considered impolite. Instead, use an open hand or gesture with your chin. Plus, it’s common to remove your shoes before entering someone’s home.
- Politeness: Taiwanese people value modesty and humility. It’s important to be polite, patient, and considerate in all interactions. Avoid raising your voice or displaying anger, as it’s seen as disrespectful.
Work and Job Opportunities in Taiwan
There are several job opportunities available in Taiwan, and you can find employment in various industries. Taiwan has a thriving job market, with a strong focus on technology, manufacturing, and services sectors. The country is home to many multinational corporations, offering job opportunities for both local and foreign professionals.
The work environment in Taiwan is known for its efficiency, professionalism, and emphasis on teamwork. Companies in Taiwan value hard work, dedication, and strong work ethics. The Taiwanese job market is competitive, and individuals with specialized skills and qualifications have a higher chance of securing good employment.
It’s important for job seekers to have a good understanding of the local job market, as well as the cultural norms and expectations in the workplace.
Education System in Taiwan
Many students in Taiwan have access to a high-quality education system that emphasizes academic excellence and prepares them for future success. The education system in Taiwan is known for its rigorous standards and emphasis on discipline and hard work. Here are some key features of the education system in Taiwan:
- Tuition Fees: In Taiwan, education is heavily subsidized by the government, making it affordable for most families. Public schools, including universities, charge relatively low tuition fees, while private schools may have higher fees.
- School Curriculum: The curriculum in Taiwan focuses on core subjects such as math, science, Chinese language, and English. There’s also an emphasis on holistic education, with subjects like arts, music, and physical education being integrated into the curriculum.
- Exam-Oriented System: Taiwan’s education system is known for its competitive nature and exam-oriented approach. Students are required to take national exams at various levels, which play a crucial role in determining their future academic and career prospects.
Safety and Security in Taiwan
One of the most important aspects of living in Taiwan is the high level of safety and security that residents experience on a daily basis. The country has a relatively low crime rate, making it one of the safest places to live in Asia.
The Taiwanese government places great emphasis on community safety, and as a result, the communities are closely knit and vigilant. The police force is highly efficient and responsive, ensuring that citizens feel protected at all times.
In addition, Taiwan has a well-developed emergency services system, including hospitals, fire stations, and ambulances, which are easily accessible and readily available.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Some Popular Tourist Attractions in Taiwan?
Popular tourist attractions in Taiwan include night markets, where visitors can sample local food and shop for souvenirs, and scenic mountains like Alishan and Taroko Gorge, which offer breathtaking views and hiking opportunities.
How Easy Is It to Find Vegetarian or Vegan Food Options in Taiwan?
In Taiwan, it is relatively easy to find vegetarian and vegan food options. The local cuisine offers a variety of plant-based dishes, and there are famous restaurants dedicated to serving these specialties. Following a vegetarian or vegan diet can have positive health benefits and contribute to environmental sustainability.
What Is the Legal Drinking Age in Taiwan?
The legal drinking age in Taiwan is 18. Taiwanese culture places importance on social drinking, with a variety of alcoholic beverages available. It is common to see people enjoying a drink with friends or colleagues.
Are There Any Restrictions on Bringing Pets Into Taiwan?
Pet import regulations in Taiwan include quarantine requirements. Certain pets may be subject to breed restrictions or require specific documentation. It is advisable to research and comply with these regulations before bringing a pet into the country.
How Do I Go About Obtaining a Visa for Long-Term Stay in Taiwan?
To obtain a long-term stay visa in Taiwan, one must go through the visa application process. Required documents typically include a valid passport, completed application form, proof of financial stability, and a health certificate.
The Sum Up
To sum it up, living in Taiwan offers a favorable cost of living, efficient healthcare system, reliable transportation, and a variety of job opportunities.
Finding accommodation may require some effort, but the language barrier can be overcome with the friendly and helpful locals. Adapting to the cultural etiquette is essential to integrate into the Taiwanese society.
The education system is highly regarded, ensuring quality education for residents. Taiwan is a safe and secure country to live in, making it an attractive destination for expats.