Foreword: Please note that this is not a comprehensive list of questions. This is meant to only give a basic overview of Taiwan's business environment to those who have not yet been to there.
What is the corporate tax rate in Taiwan?
20% as of 2018.
What is the VAT rate in Taiwan?
What is the withholding tax rate in Taiwan?
Typically it is 20% for sending funds overseas. For tax treaties, please click here.
For other types of withholding tax (can be 0.1-15). For further information please consult with a tax adviser, such as Grant Thornton Taiwan.
What is the personal income tax like?
Please find our article on the subject here.
Are transfer pricing reports required in Taiwan?
Yes, if your group entity in Taiwan has made over 300 million NTD total annual revenue. For more information, consult with a tax advisory firm such as Grant Thornton Taiwan.
How do you start a Taiwan business/company?
Please see our article on the subject here. There is also a website and book about this subject here. You can also consult an accounting or law firm such as Grant Thornton Taiwan for a price quote on their company setup services.
How much does it cost to start a company in Taiwan?
As much as you need to cover operating costs. If you need to hire foreigners, your paid in capital should be over 5 million NT.
How do you hire foreigners in Taiwan?
You need to have a company with starting capital of 5 million NT or more.
What business licenses are required in Taiwan?
This depends on the business. For food related products and medicine, Taiwan FDA approval is required.
How do I get FDA approval in Taiwan?
You should consult with a law firm for help on this.
Is a corporate secretary required in Taiwan?
Is bookkeeping/payroll required in Taiwan?
Yes. You can use service from a local accounting firm or other provider such as Grant Thornton Taiwan.
What statutory requirements are there in Taiwan?
Labor insurance, health insurance, and pension.
What is the rate for overtime in Taiwan?
This is complicated, but it is at least time and a half for a weekday.
What are Taiwan labor standards?
Please see our article here on Taiwan’s Labor Standards Act.
Does Taiwan have a good talent/labor market?
Yes, there are many bilingual talented people here, and many are underemployed because of lack of opportunity.
How do I find talent in Taiwan?
The best way is to use your connections, but you can also try Taiwan work finding websites:
The most popular work finding website in Taiwan, although the interface is only in Chinese (sorry), job postings can be in English. Its worth checking out, even if you can’t read Chinese (perhaps you can have a Chinese friend help you out).
This is probably the second most popular work finding site in Taiwan, this websites interface is also only in Chinese, although some job postings are in English.
This is a great English based website for English Teaching jobs in Taiwan.
Linkedin has Taiwan job opportunities that are mostly in English.
Other than these, search Google. Who knows what you’ll find.
What are the biggest companies in Taiwan?
Foxconn, TSMC and Pegatron, Quanta Computer, and Cathay Life Insurance are the biggest companies in Taiwan. Other companies include Acer, Asus, and HTC.
What is Taiwan's economic situation like?
Please see our economic FAQ here.
Please like, comment, and share!
Also, feel free to contact us with any specific questions about doing business in Taiwan.
Foreword: Please note that this is not a comprehensive list of questions. This is meant to only give a basic overview of Taiwan's daily life situation to those who have never been there.
What do Taiwanese people eat for breakfast?
So many things. Super traditional Taiwanese breakfast consists of some type of rice porridge and pork. But, soymilk and baked/steamed buns are also very popular. Also hamburgers, onion pancakes, sandwiches and a ton of other stuff. For more information, check out this blog, or just come to Taiwan and try some yourself!
What do Taiwanese people eat for lunch?
A typical lunch would be a Biandang orlunchbox, which includes a meat patty, rice, and vegetables. Noodles are also a popular lunch choice.
What do Taiwanese people eat for dinner?
Similar to lunch, locals eat biandang and noodles, but also hot pot and red bean soup during winter, along with western foods.
What are table manners in Taiwan?
I would say table manners are somewhat similar as America. If you follow American rules, you will not offend anyone; but be sure to not stick your chopsticks upright in your bowl as this is a symbol of death. Burping and other bodily noises such as slurping are somewhat as long as it is not overtly loud. Holding your rice bowl and using chopsticks is common practice.
What gestures are rude in Taiwan?/ What is impolite in Taiwan?
Showing the bottom of your feet.
Giving things with only one hand
Sticking chopsticks upright in a bowl
Giving someone a clock as a gift
Not looking someone in the eye
For more, check out this blog:
Is Fengshui important in Taiwan?
Yes. But it also depends of the person; many people are more superstitious than others, and some people don’t care. But in general it is an important principle.
Are Taiwanese people friendly?
Yes, they are some of the most friendly people in the world, especially to foreigners!
What is the hotline for foreigners in Taiwan?
Hotline for foreigners in Taiwan: 0800-024-111.
Is the water safe in Taiwan?
Filter or boil water in Taiwan, or buy bottled water. It is not safe to drink from the tap. Taipei has the cleanest water (meaning it requires the least filtration), while more rural areas are hit and miss.
How is the air quality in Taiwan?
Not very good, but better than mainland China. Taiwan has the worst pollution of the four Asian tigers. Taipei’s pollution is particularly bad because it lies in a basin, enclosed on all sides. Power plants and motorcycles give the most pollution. Pollution from China gives tons of pollution to Taiwan during winter. Due to this and lack of rain, winter has the worst air quality during the year.
Is Taiwan safe?
Yes, Taiwan is one of the safest countries in the world according to Prescavve. This is due to low crime and high economic freedom and development.
Is Taiwan pet friendly?
Yes. On theTaipei MRT, “Animals brought into stations or trains should be keep in pet boxes, pet strollers, small cages, or small containers which do not exceed 55cm in length, 45cm in width, and 40cm in height (size limits for pet strollers refer to the pet cabin only, the frame and wheels are excluded).” This is probably good advice whenever you bring your pet into an indoor location.
Are there wild dogs in Taiwan?
Yes. Be careful going to rural places or exploring. If a dog starts chasing you, turn sideways and don’t run away. Pull out a backpack or umbrella and yell; the dog should back away. You may also consider bringing pepper spray if the above fails.
Is Taiwan a good place for cycling/biking?
Yes, Taiwan is a cycler’s paradise! Many people circle the island by bike as a life achievement. All police stations have bike pumps, and there are more than 10,000 convenience stores in Taiwan, making it easy to take a break and get a fresh meal along the way.
Is Taiwan a good place for hiking?
Yes, 2/3 of Taiwan is covered in mountains. There are hiking trails almost everywhere, but higher mountains require hiking permits. For more information, visit this blog.
Is Taiwan a good place for jogging?
Yes, but in the summer it can get hot, so you should drink plenty of water. Also in the winter air quality can get bad, so you might consider wearing a mask.
Are there gyms in Taiwan?
Are there swimming pools in Taiwan?
Is swimming allowed at Taiwan beaches?
Most public beaches will allow only allow this in a designated swimming area. There are usually signs that say no swimming for your safety, but usually swimmers will not give a fine. This is because most Taiwanese people cannot swim. At most a lifeguard will come and whistle blow you. Be careful to not swim too far into the ocean, due to rip tide.
Where can I go river tracing in Taiwan?
Everywhere there is a river! Taiwan is a river tracer’s paradise. The best river tracing is in the mountains up steep gorges. You will likely find less people on the east coast.
Are there churches in Taiwan?
Yes. Christians make up 4.5% of Taiwan’s population. For more information, check here:
What is the best way to get around Taiwan?
I personally think the best way to get around is by Scooter, but bicycle and public transport are also very good. Travelling by car is difficult because there are narrow streets, many scooters, and limited parking.
You have a few options:
For more information, please visit our travel/transportation FAQ.
Where can I buy groceries in Taiwan?
Carrefour, PX mart, Wellcome, Jason’s, and Costco should have all the groceries you need. There are also a few expat stores in Taipei, especially in the Tianmu area.
Where can I buy furniture in Taiwan?
Ikea. And tons of other places.
Where should I buy clothes in Taiwan?
Pretty much everywhere. Cheap clothes can be found at night markets, Net, Uniclo, and Carrefour. If you want more expensive brands, go to an outlet or mall.
Where should I buy electronics in Taiwan?
Online (PC Home and Shoppee), at a night market, at Carrefour, Cankun, or Guanghua Digital Plaza in Taipei.
Have any more questions about daily life in Taiwan? Please leave them in the comments below, and we might just add them to the list!
You can also search Facebook for foreigner groups in Taiwan and ask your questions there.
Please like, follow, and share to help everyone know that Taiwan is a friendly and inviting place for foreigners!
Foreword: Please note that this is not a comprehensive list of questions and answers. This is meant to only give a basic overview of Taiwan's immigration landscape to those who have never been there.
Q: What is an ARC?
A: Alien Resident Certificate, which is equivalent to a resident permit or "green card" in Taiwan.
Q: How do I apply for a Taiwan visitor visa?
A: You can use iVisa.com. They can process your visa online for a small fee. For more information click here.
Q: How do I find out if I need a visitor visa to Taiwan for my country?
A: You can use the following tool below provided by iVisa.com.
Foreword: Never do any of the following. This list is simply ironic and satirical, and should in no way be taken literally. Any resemblance to real life people or situations in the satire described below (except number two) are purely coincidental.
1. Never Leave Taipei 永遠不要離開臺北
Every expat knows there is no electricity outside of New Taipei, so don’t even try to go anywhere else. Also, with no MRT, how are you supposed to get around? You might be ambushed by hostile natives on an un-kept jungle path. Besides, all those nature sites don’t have a 7-11 on the trail, so you’ll probably starve to death if the natives don’t kill you first. Just stay in the Taipei expat bubble and never leave. The south is full of dirt, crime, pollution, and everything you hate. All the teaching jobs and higher salaries are in Taipei, so just stay there. Also, it’s too hard to leave during the holidays because of traffic, so just stay in Taipei on your days off. After all, Taiwan actually only means Taipei. You don’t need to take part in the good weather, open spaces, sandy beaches, beautiful scenery, and local delicacies down south. There’s probably something similar around Taipei anyway.
2. Get a Taiwan Independence Tattoo on Your Head 在頭上刺青“臺獨”
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, check out this article: http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2017/10/23/2003680896
3. Never Learn Chinese 永遠不要學中文
You can’t expect to get your life ruined if you go around learning Chinese. You need to keep your mother tongue locked in a box so that it is not corrupted by the strange Chinese language. You don’t need to talk to your neighbors, make friends, or talk to your Taiwanese in-laws. Street signs are overrated anyway. Anything that is not translated into your mother tongue should be reported to the government and translated immediately, and it is your right as a privileged foreigner to point out those bad translations. The only job you hope to get involves teaching English, so learning anything else is just a waste of time. Chinese is a giant wall that you will never climb up, so just let it fall on top of your feeble body.
4. Pretend You Know Chinese, Even Though You Don’t 雖然你不會中文，假裝你會
Nothing will make you seem smarter to other expats and Taiwanese people if they think you know Chinese. If they ever speak to you in Chinese, smile and nod, and reply in English. If they ask why you don’t reply in Chinese, answer by stating that you don’t want to brag about your Chinese skills. If you are in a restaurant and the waiter/waitress gives you an English menu, throw it back in their face while praising your own Chinese ability. Then correct all the bad English grammar on the menu, which should give you an idea of what to order. If you see an expat conversing in Chinese, don’t hesitate to say that they are using incorrect Chinese grammar. No explanation is needed because criticizing others will automatically make you look better than them. Which leads to the next point…
5. Put Others Down to Make Yourself Look Good 批評別人來讓你自己看起老更好
Nothing will make you look more like an expert than making fun of amateurs. Go ahead and buy a few thousand fake follower bots on your social media so that you can make fun of those amateurs and their lack of followers. Even if the amateurs have accomplished more than you, and happen to be more talented, motivated, and passionate, it’s important to shove them down. Once you do this, their achievements suddenly become yours, and you can gloat in all your fake accomplishments.
6. Drink All Night…And All Day 整夜喝酒…整天也喝酒
Drinking helps you forget about those childhood memories, past marriages, girlfriends/boyfriends, or former jobs that are haunting you. The more you drink the more closer you will be forgetting about your ruined life, until you wake up in the morning and remember it again. To solve this problem, keep drinking all day.
7. Take Personal Responsibility for the Grammar Mistakes of Everyone in the Entire World 承擔全世界的文法錯誤
People have been correcting your grammar all your life; now its time to return the favor on the world. If you’ve been teaching English for your entire adult life, this is an easy task. It’s all the more fun to alienate yourself from other expats by correcting their English. It doesn’t matter if you are right or not, because only the English from your home country is the correct form of English. It is your personal duty to purge the earth of all English that does not conform to your standards, no expat can be spared.
8. Don’t Make a Crappy Blog/Vlog 不要做一個很爛的部落格或主播
Making a crappy blog is easy, but it is too constructive of an activity. Just don’t make it to begin with. If you absolutely have to make a blog/vlog, make sure it only has one or two posts or videos that are a few years old, and never get into a routine of making regular posts. This will give you too much sense of accomplishment and self-confidence. You need to procrastinate every creative thought you have until your death bed.
9. Complain About How Taiwan is Worse Than Your Country 抱怨臺灣比你國家爛
Nothing will help you slip into the pits of despair faster than comparing every flaw and strange thing to your home country and complain about how things are so gross, weird, unsafe, and stupid. Never try to put yourself in the shoes of a Taiwanese person. Chopsticks, Chinese characters, and stinky tofu are all just an excuse to alienate foreigners, and so is everything else. You need to complain about everything and make sure everyone knows how things are run in your glorious mother country.
10. Take Offense to Everything 被所有的事情得罪
This goes without saying. The moment you accept you are wrong the same moment you might learn something, and that’s exactly what you’re trying to avoid. If someone tries to start a constructive conversation, respond with an attack on their world view and stereotype them as your enemy. Also, attack their grammar whenever possible. You want to keep your whiny expat bubble as fresh and clean as possible. You can’t let any of those people affiliated with the opposite political bubble invade your news feed without a fight. It is your duty to assume everyone is out to get you and you must assume guilt before innocence. This way you can spend most of your time angrily spatting on your social media instead of engaging in constructive conversation that you might be enlightened from.
11. Troll Other Expats Online for Fun 當別的外國人的酸民
Never lose any online arguments with other expats. You are the ultimate expert on this country, and no one can tell you otherwise no matter how long they've lived here. Fight those happy, go lucky expats to the death, because Taiwan is full of unsolvable problems. After you are blocked, make fake accounts and keep the attack going behind their back. After this, make fake parody accounts of your enemy. This will not only make you more miserable but also make everyone watching roll their eyes and eventually unfollow you. That’s okay, because the ultimate goal is isolation and misery. You want to try to create an expat bubble in your social media where your only friends are other whiny expats.
12. Make enemies wherever you go 到處變成大家的敵人
You’re never going to be truly miserable unless you make enemies and burn bridges, not just a few bridges, but every bridge you can find. In order to complete this goal, you must deny any criticism and fight back with more criticism and even some lawsuits. It doesn’t matter if the lawsuits have any merit, you just need to make the other side scared and paranoid. Never compliment anyone, and never admit a mistake. Make sure you throw the words please, thank you, sorry, and I forgive you out the window. Those will not help you achieve the goal of becoming miserable. Oh, and go ahead and lie, cheat, steal, get in fights, and otherwise break the law. You do not want the Taiwanese authorities to have a good impression of foreigners. If you do enough bad stuff you might just get yourself sent away to another foreign country, and you can start the cycle all over again!
13. Complain About Air Quality 抱怨空氣污染
If you see smoke coming out of a bus or scooter, don’t just stand there, complain about it! It is your foreign privilege to breath clean air. The entire island of Taiwan is an air quality nightmare, and you are the only savior. Through your constant efforts of complaining about the air quality, the government will listen to your non-voting voice and do something about it eventually. In the meantime, you need to complain as hard and as loud as you can. Do not try to comfort yourself by saying that the air quality is much better here than in China or the western United States. You need to make a case that the air quality in Taiwan is the worst in the entire world.
14. Complain About…Everything 抱怨…一切
You’re not going to get far as a miserable expat without complaining. Don’t let other expats’ “love of Taiwan” cloud your mind from the ultimate goal of complete misery. There’s nothing to be grateful for as an expat. Taiwan sucks, it all sucks, and you’re stuck here. Complaining will help you continue on your downward spiral of isolation and sadness. Keeping shoveling fresh heaps of angry fuel to keep the complain train chugging at full speed!
15. Watch the World Burn 看著世界燃燒
Now that you’ve mastered the above list, just sit back and watch the world burn. You’ve created a giant crap hole that you live on and feast on daily. You must spend your days drinking, yelling, complaining, fighting, and getting offended all day every day in real life and on social media. Don’t even think about doing something constructive like planting trees or helping out at an orphanage or something. Needy people out there don’t actually exist and your community doesn’t deserve any help that you could give. And don’t even think about trying to understand Taiwanese culture or languages. The country you grew up in is the only proper culture in this universe, so there is no need to learn anything about anywhere else. You don’t need to connect with other people anyway, and it’s your privilege to sulk in your own self-pity and lonesomeness.
On a serious note, now that you know what not to do as an expat, go out there and do the opposite. Stop trying to tear everyone down, and go make Taiwan and the world a better place!
For some background on why Expats act this way, you can check out this blog at Nihaositgoing.
Please like, comment, and follow to see more of our blogs in the future!
We are US Expats that have extensive experience living, working, and travelling in Taiwan. In our day, we had to learn many things about Taiwan the hard way. But we have come to learn that Taiwan is one of the best places in the world for Foreigners to live. Our blog does not represent the opinions of every foreigner in Taiwan. We are just trying to help others learn more about this beautiful country.