Buying a house in Taiwan can be confusing and stressful. It is one of the most important decisions you will make in your life. To even consider buying a house in Taiwan, you have probably lived here for years, so many of the things I will mention in this blog may not be new to you.
I have spent quite a few years looking for houses and saving money for a down payment, as well as figuring out all the costs and other factors involved in purchasing the right house. Also, I recently just bought a house in Taipei in 2021. I have created this guide and FAQ to help people understand the buying process, finding the right house, and saving the right amount of money needed to make a move.
For our blog covering our actual experience buying a house, see this blog here.
For our blog covering our actual experience renovating a house, see this blog here.
The following is my personal insight as an American looking for houses mainly near Taipei City.
In an effort to treat foreign residents equally, Taiwan's Ministry of the Interior responded to complaints of foreign residents by changing the ARC Uniform ID numbering system to match the format used by Taiwan citizens. Because of this, every foreigner must change their ARC number the next time they change or update their ARC card starting Jan. 1 2021. So what do you need to do after your ARC number has changed?
An APRC (short for Alien Permanent Resident Certificate, aka PR) is perhaps the most desirable immigration status for most foreigners in Taiwan. By simply living in Taiwan for five years or more in a row and meeting a few other requirements, you can enjoy permanent residency in Taiwan and an open work permit. However the process and requirements are not so straight forward depending on your situation, therefore we have created this guide to help answer some common questions.
Foreword: Please note that this guide is for reference only. The ultimate authority on what documents are required and whether or not your application will be accepted is the immigration bureau. Some of the information in the blog may be inaccurate for your specific situation. For clarifications, please call the foreigner hotline directly (toll free): 0800-024-111.
This information for this blog was taken from the NIA website and personal experience such as from calls to the immigration office, and in person visits to the immigration office. Personally I applied for an APRC as the spouse of a Taiwan national.
My personal experience getting my APRC was a confusing and difficult process. I made many mistakes along the way. I have listed some of the key takeaways from this process as follows.
Now let's start the Q+A.
On the plane leaving Taiwan's Taoyuan Airport in 2014, I promised myself I would find a way to stay in Taiwan permanently. I had just finished a 90 day vacation on a visitor free visa, which included a round island trip, daily bike rides around Kaohsiung, and daily trips to the beach in Qijin. I was not going to let a 90 day visa stop me again from enjoying what still to me is the most beautiful Island in the world, and the most friendly place in the world to western foreigners.
Taiwan is a safe, inexpensive, and convenient place to give birth. Taiwan has a world class healthcare system, capable doctors, and top of the line medical facilities. If you are hesitant about whether or not you want to give birth in Taiwan, let me tell you now that there is nothing to worry about, and having a baby in Taiwan will be fine. I have created this brief guide here for you so that you can understand a little more about what it is like to give birth in Taiwan.
Forward: Please note that I am writing this blog and FAQ section from the perspective of an American father, married to a Taiwan National, covered by Taiwan's National Health Insurance. I have recently gone through the birth of two children in Taiwan, born in 2017 and 2020. One was born in a private local clinic and the other was born in a public city hospital.
This blog will begin with my experience, and at the end there is a frequently asked question (FAQ) section.
As someone contemplating expat life in Taiwan, you may be afraid of what life is actually like living here as a foreigner. Therefore we have created this short list of the main things you should consider before taking the plunge and moving to Taiwan. All things considered, you should move here; it's perhaps the best country in the world to live for expats.
Buying a car as a foreigner in Taiwan can be a confusing and stressful experience. If you do not live near a train station, chances are that you have thought about at least buying a car for long trips. Taiwan is a place that should be explored not just with public transportation, but by car or scooter. If you only take public transportation everywhere you go, you are missing out on a huge part of Taiwan. To make you buying experience smoother, we have created this guide to let you know what to expect and answer any questions.
Buying a scooter as a foreigner in Taiwan can be a confusing and stressful experience. If you do not live near the MRT in Taipei, chances are that you have thought about at least buying a scooter. Taiwan is a place that should be explored not just with public transportation, but by scooter. If you only take public transportation everywhere you go, you are missing out on a huge part of Taiwan. To make you buying experience smoother, we have created this guide to let you know what to expect and answer any questions.
Here is an easy checklist for buying a car or scooter in Taiwan:
Before buying the scooter:
Taiwan is one of the best places for expats to live, due to its high standard of living, friendly environment for western foreigners, convenience, great food, and amazing sites. In this blog, I will give you the top ten reasons why you should live in Taiwan.
As a long-time driver/scooter rider/cyclist in Taiwan, I have seen my fair share of bad driving. Taiwan has its own unique driving culture, which combined with a lack of proper traffic law enforcement has created many bad habits among Taiwanese drivers. Below is a list of some of the quirky bad habits and customs you can see on the roads in Taiwan.
Please note that the following is satire and not to be taken seriously. Please do not perform any of the following. Please follow all the traffic laws of the Republic of China. Please be safe while driving or riding a scooter in Taiwan. Multiple people are injured and killed in traffic accidents in Taiwan every day, partly because they follow these dangerous unwritten rules. Most of these are just bad habits shared by many Taiwanese drivers.
Taiwan is one of the best countries in the world. Everyone should learn more about this bastion of democracy in Asia, which also happens to be the best kept tourism secret in Asia. There is so much here to do and explore, and thanks to a great quality of life it has been constantly named one of the best places for foreign expats to settle.
For those of you that are new to Taiwan or know little about it, we have created this short listicle to help educate you about this amazing country.
1. Taiwan is Not Your Home Country 臺灣不是你的家鄉
During the Covid 19 pandemic, Taiwan has been lucky to avoid lock-down due to great government procedures and policies. In Taiwan we can still go out, but safe social distancing is still required, after all this is a global pandemic and we do not know when the next COVID-19 case will be detected. Obviously the best place to social distance is at home, but to help you have fun in Taiwan while at the same time keep safe social distance, we have made a list of the top 15 sites in Taiwan that are usually free of other people.
Of course the list of social distancing locations in Taiwan is limited, with two thirds of the island filled with mountainous area. Below is a full list of all the tourist sites we have blogged about in Taiwan for your reference.
Banking in Taiwan as a foreigner can be a frustrating experience, especially with a language barrier and cultural gaps. Banking still is a major pain even for long time residents. However we have made this guide to help make banking in Taiwan a little easier, more efficient, and more beneficial especially for expats new to Taiwan.
Foreword: The following Q+A is based on personal experience and and is for reference only. this is not an exhaustive analysis of Taiwan's banking sector. Each bank has different policies, and the employees in the banks may not even know their own policies for foreigners.
Nantou lies at the heart of Taiwan and is it's only landlocked county. It is known for its rugged natural landscapes and mountains, and includes the highest mountain in East Asia. If you come to Taiwan you should definitely pass through this place and stop by at some of the sights we will mention below.
In this blog we will visit the following places:
Taiwan has recently received a lot of press for its great response to the Covid-19 outbreak. But Taiwan has had a world class universal healthcare system for decades, known as National Health Insurance (NHI). People have long been coming to Taiwan for "medical tourism," due to Taiwan's low cost and high quality medical care. In this article we will answer common questions about Taiwan's healthcare system and why it is perhaps the best in the world.
Please note that some of the answers below are anecdotal based on personal experience using National Health Insurance in Taiwan, and are for reference only.
A few weeks ago my Spark Drone Crashed. I posted a few photos which gained quite a lot of interest, so I have decided to share the whole blog about the crash here. Also as a fellow internet user I know that is helpful to post this kind of crash information on the internets for the use of others.
Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with any camp ground or camping products in Taiwan. The following FAQ is only based on our opinion after years of camping in Taiwan, and should not be considered absolute fact. If in doubt, make sure you check with the local police station or other government office to make sure you are following local regulations while camping in Taiwan.
With two thirds of the island covered in mountains, Taiwan has some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. One of the best ways to experience the natural beauty of Taiwan is via camping. Below is a very basic level FAQ on camping in Taiwan for foreigners that have never experienced it.
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. This is meant to only give a basic overview of Taipei to those who have never been there.
How do you pronounce Taipei?
Where is Taipei on a Map?/Where is Taipei in Taiwan?
Taipei City is located in northern Taiwan, laying in the middle of the Taipei Basin surrounded by New Taipei City. Please refer to the map below:
Foreword: Please note that this is not a comprehensive list of questions. This is meant to only give a basic overview of Taiwan's weather to those who have never been there.
What type of climate does Taiwan have?
The Tropic of Cancer lies across the middle of Taiwan, giving Taiwan a humid subtropical climate in the north, and a tropical monsoon climate in the south. Temperatures in the north vary from 14-20 °C (57-68 °F) in the winter and 26-34 °C (78-93 °F) in the summer, while in the south temperatures vary from 16-24 °C (60-75 °F) in the winter and 26-32 °C (78-89 °F) in the summer on average. The most rain falls in the summer time across Taiwan, with Typhoons bringing torrential rains during that time. Average humidity is around 75% throughout the year.
When should I visit Taiwan?
This depends on what kind of weather you prefer. If you do not mind hot and humid weather, then the summer might be best for you. If you prefer mild or chilly temperatures, then you should come between October and March. The most rain falls in the summer (and typhoons might delay your flights), but typically you will see more sunny days in Northern and Eastern Taiwan during that time.
What is the weather in Taiwan?/How is the weather in Taiwan?
For the current weather in Taiwan as well as forecasts, you can look at the Central Weather Bureau’s Website, CWB radar, and Accuweather (which has the most reliable weather forecasts for Taiwan in my opinion)
What is the temperature in Taiwan?
For current temperatures, click on the links for the question above. On average, temperatures in the north vary from 14-20 °C (57-68 °F) in the winter and 26-34 °C (78-93 °F) in the summer, while in the south temperatures vary from 16-24 °C (60-75 °F) in the winter and 26-32 °C (78-89 °F) in the summer.
When do Cherry blossoms bloom in Taiwan?
Most bloom fromEarly February to Early March. There may be a few weeks of variation based on current temperatures. Also be aware that Cherry blossoms only last about two weeks. If you are not careful, they’ll be gone before you get there.
When is the butterfly migration in Taiwan?/ Where is the butterfly migration in Taiwan?
This migration takes place from December to March in Southern Taiwan. Millions of butterflies cross the Taiwan Strait to winter in the foothills near the border of Pingtung and Kaohsiung. Maolin National Scenic Area is famous for this butterfly migration, but other valleys nearby also are known to hold thousands of the migrating insects.
Why is there no snow in Taiwan?/ Does Taiwan have snow?/Is there snow in Taiwan?
There is Snow in Taiwan! Just in high elevations during winter. In major cities where most people live, the elevation is too low for snow to fall, and the temperature almost never gets below freezing.
When does Taiwan have Snow?
Taiwan has snow at high mountain elevations from December to March. On rare occasions, the snow level can reach down to 500 meters.
What kind of clothes should I wear in winter?
In winter, temperatures range from 14-26 °C (57-78 °F), which with nearly 100% humidity can be quite chilly. If you are going to be in the outdoors, we suggest wearing wind-proof clothing, as the humid wind might still go straight through a wool sweater. Also note that there is rarely any central heating in Taiwan, so be prepared to dress in layers even while indoors. The weather will be cooler in the North, and warmer in the south.
What kind of clothes should I wear in spring?
In spring temperatures usually vary from 19-29 °C (66-84 °F). We suggest bringing a jacket for cold days, but you should mostly prepare for warmer days. Wind-proof clothing is not entirely necessary at this time unless you are riding a scooter. Spring and fall usually have the most comfortable weather, so you shouldn’t worry too much about proper clothing.
What kind of clothes should I wear in summer?
In summer temperatures usually vary from 26-34 °C (78-93 °F). There will also be high humidity. We suggest wearing shorts, t-shirts, and perhaps a hat for sun protection. I would recommend polyester instead of cotton, as it dries out faster (you will be sweating). Be sure to wear sunscreen if you will be outdoors, and to drink a lot of water. It will be really hot, so be prepared to hide inside convenience stores to get some brief air conditioning before going back into the blazing heat.
What kind of clothes should I wear in fall?
In autumn, temperatures vary on average from 19-30 °C (66-86 °F). Spring and fall usually have the most comfortable weather, so you shouldn’t worry too much about proper clothing. We would suggest wearing whatever you feel comfortable in at room temperature. Beware though that September and October may have some summer-like heat, so be sure to pack some short sleeved clothes just in case you run into a heat wave.
How is the weather in Taipei in November?
Record high 34.3 °C (93.7 °F)
Average high 24.2 °C (75.6 °F)
Daily Mean 21.5 °C (70.7 °F)
Average low: 19.3 °C (66.7 °F)
Record low: 1.1 °C (34 °F)
Avg rainfall, 83.1 cm (3.2 inches)
Avg rainy days, 12.4
Avg. Relative humidity: 75%
Mean sunshine hours: 99.4
How is the weather in Taipei in December?
Record high 31.5 °C (88.7 °F)
Average high 20.7 °C (69.3 °F)
Daily Mean 17.9 °C (64.2 °F)
Average low: 15.6 °C (60.1 °F)
Record low: 1.8 °C (35.2 °F)
Avg rainfall, 73.3 cm (2.8 inches)
Avg rainy days, 11.7
Avg. Relative humidity: 75%
Mean sunshine hours: 90.7
What is the weather like in Taipei?
Taipei has a humid subtropical climate. Summers are long, hot and humid, and have heavy rainstorms including Typhoons between June and October. Temperatures range from 26-34 °C (78-93 °F).
Winters are short and warm with relatively less rain, but have less sunshine. Temperatures range from 14-20 °C (57-68 °F).
Why does it rain so much in Taipei?/Why does it always rain in Taipei?
Rainstorms are typical in the summer in Taipei due to monsoon weather and Typhoons. Most of the rain falls in the summer, but other months also see rain daily. There are typically between 11-15 rainy days in any given month in Taipei, so it does not always rain in Taipei.
How cold does Taipei get?
The average low temperature during winter in Taipei is 14 °C (57 °F), but can often get to as low as 10 °C (50 °F), but rarely any lower. The record low temperature in Taipei was recoded in February at -.02 °C (31.9 °F). Also note that it can be very windy on the coast.
How cold does Taiwan get?
Typically most populated places in Taiwan never get below 10 °C (50 °F). The coldest it has ever gotten on Taiwan’s highest mountain, Jade Mountain, was around -11 °C (13 °F). There are also strong winds on the coasts of Taiwan during winter, especially along the Taiwan Strait.
How is the air pollution in Taiwan?
Air pollution is usually the worst during winter when the air is stagnant. Often times air pollution can get to unhealthy levels, especially in the larger cities. For the current air pollution index, clickhere.
Can I ride a scooter in shorts and flip flops during the winter in Taiwan?
You can, and many Taiwanese people do the same. However, it will be really, really cold, so we recommend wearing clothes that are wind proof. Also be aware that wearing flip flops while riding a scooter is technically illegal in Taiwan although I have never heard of this being enforced.
How many seasons does Taiwan have?
Four, although the temperature variation is less and less pronounced the farther south you go in Taiwan.
Are there typhoons in Taiwan?
When is typhoon Season in Taiwan?
Typhoon Season is roughly from June to October.
What do I do if I am caught in a typhoon?
If you are caught in a Typhoon be sure to stay indoors, as flying debris and flooding can kill you. Most Taiwanese buildings are typhoon-proof, and fatalities are usually minimal. Stay indoors, stay high, and you will stay safe.
Typhoons may also cause cancelled or delayed flights, so be aware if you are planning to fly from June to October.
What is the best time of year to visit Taiwan?
In our opinion summer is the best time to visit Taiwan, because that is when there is the most sunshine and the cold winds coming off the Taiwan Strait subside. However, many people cannot stand the Taiwan heat, which can reach 39 °C °F and 100% humidity. Also, if you want to do outdoor activities, river tracing is safest in the winter when there is less rain, but wind surfing is best in the winter when the winds are strong. Whatever you plan to do in Taiwan, the weather is usually bearable and there should be a time of year that suits everyone’s fancy.
Have any more questions about the weather in Taiwan? Please leave them in the comments below, and we might just add them to the list!
Please like, follow, and share to help everyone know that Taiwan is a great place to vacation year round!
It’s Mid-September and the unusually oppressive heat of summer is fading at last, replaced by the rich, windy weather (and occasional typhoon) for which Taiwan autumns are known. As a cyclist, it’s my favorite time of the year, and this week’s column would probably be about my upcoming weekend cycling plans, if I’d not been sidetracked by an experience I had in Tainan on Monday, delivering a keynote address on the subject of “Branding Taiwan’s Cities”.
現在是九月中旬，夏天異常炎熱的時候正在消失，取而代之的是秋風豐富的獨特台灣天氣（偶爾有颱風）。 作為一名自行車騎士，這是我每一年中最喜歡的一季節，如果不是周一我在台南體驗的一段經歷，本週的文章可能是關於即將到來的周末自行車計劃。我那時候就這個題目發表主題演講 “品牌化台灣的城市”。
In typical Friday Column tradition (and in keeping with Lao Tzu’s maxim on travel), I may take a winding route to reach the destination.
Before coming on board with MyTaiwanTour I worked as a travel writer, both for travel-guide giant Lonely Planet and several dozen other smaller publications, periodicals and travel websites. Though my work brought me to many places around the world (Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Belize and all over China, just to name a few), my specialty has generally been writing about urban areas. I have an affinity for cities, and have always said that given 72 hours in any city I can gather enough information to be able to offer sound advice to any first-time traveler.
My usual method for getting to know a city is as follows: Before leaving, I do some basic research on the city I’m about to visit. Local history, must-see sights, signature dishes, that sort of thing. Once I hit the ground, I forget 90% of this and get myself purposely lost for as many hours as possible. This is in line not just with Lao Tzu’s maxim about having no fixed goals, but also with that of American writer Lawrence Block, who writes, “Our happiest moments as tourists always seem to come when we stumble upon one thing while in pursuit of something else.”
Lawrence Block is from from New York City, and so am I. Which is as good a segue as any to the subject of City Branding.
If I were to walk into a crowded elevator anywhere in the English speaking world singing
Start Spreading the news…
I’m leaving today…
I wanna be a part of it…
And then point to someone at random, chances are better than average that they’d respond
New York, New York!
NYC is easily the most well-branded city on the planet. Barely a day goes by in Taiwan where I don’t run into at least a couple of people advertising some aspect of my hometown on their clothing, whether it’s a T-shirt bearing the letters NYC, some variation of the city’s iconic skyline, or just the NY Yankees Logo. I’ve had farmers in rural China ask me where I’m from, and when I’ve answered Niǔyuē (New York), they’ve given me the thumbs up and responded Dà píngguǒ! (The Big Apple!)
紐約市很容易成為地球上品牌最好的城市。 在台灣我幾乎每天至少會遇到一些穿著廣告我的家某個方面的衣服, 不管是帶有NYC字母的T卹，紐約城的天際線的某個角度，或 只是紐約洋基標誌。 我曾在中國農村有遇過農民問我從哪裡來，當我用中文回答 “紐約” 的時候，他們給了我大拇指，並回應了”大蘋果！”
Not surprisingly, New York City has consistently been one of the world’s top ten most visited cities for decades. While I gave up NYC residency about the same time I came legally of age, I’ve never given up my identity as a New Yorker (or the distinctive accent).
毫不奇怪，紐約市數十年來一直是世界十大旅遊的城市之一。 雖然我早就放 棄紐約市居民”法律上的”身份，我還沒有放棄我作為紐約人的身份（或特殊的口音）。
So, finding myself among esteemed company as one of two keynote speakers at a seminar put on by the Dream Travel Taiwan Alliance (the overarching purpose of which was to share and discuss best practices in international destination marketing and the latest trends in the global tourism industry, specifically as applied to cities looking to develop their own marketability as tourist destinations), I began by speaking about the success that New York has had in branding itself.
因此，我在 “ 讓世界旅人。看見台灣” (Dream Travel Taiwan Alliance) 舉辦的一個研討會上，發現自己是在重大人物之中當主題講師，主要目的是分享和討論國際目旅遊行銷的最佳實踐和全球旅遊業的最新趨勢 ，特別是適用於希望發展和市場化為旅遊目的地的城市），我首先談到紐約在品牌化方面取得的成功.
I specifically started with New York, despite the fact that I realize the impossibility of any other city replicating NYC’s formula for success. NYC has so many icons (Times Square, The Statue of Liberty, The Empire State Building, a globally-known song called New York, New York, for god’s sake) that it would be impossible for any city lacking these things to ever be as successful at branding itself as a tourist destination.
Or is it?
First, everything that Singapore does well, it does really well. Great food, great transportation, great nightlife and cool, safe neighborhoods in which to wander. If you’re going to Singapore for those four things, you’re going to have an excellent time. Singapore has fine museums and good shopping, but these are not the things that primarily draw people to visit Singapore. It’s the food, convenience, nightlife and “safely exotic” vibe that brings visitors in by the millions.
首先，新加坡所做好的一切，確實做得很好。 美味的食物，很棒的交通，良好的夜生活和涼爽，安全的街區，令人放心在其中漫步。 如果你要為了 以上的四件事情去新加坡，你會有一個美好的經驗。 新加坡有很好的博物館和很好的購物場所，但這些並不是主要吸引人來新加坡的東西。 主要是食物，方便，夜生活和“安全的異國情調”的氛圍，帶來數百萬的遊客。
Second, and as importantly, Singapore knows how to get the message out about what it does offer. If I were to walk into any elevator in the world and ask random strangers (in their language of course) about Singapore, chances are better than average that they’d respond with some variation of “Great food, safe, clean and easy to get around.” (I doubt the Merlion would even come up.)
其次，同樣重要的是，新加坡知道如何將訊息傳達出去。 如果我要走進世界上任何一台電梯，問任何陌生人（當然是用他們的語言）關於新加坡的話，那麼他們會回應一些“偉大的食物，安全，乾淨，交通方便.” （我懷疑他們會提到魚尾獅。）
I’m of the opinion that, like in the case of Singapore, iconography will not be the most important part in the success of getting the message out about what Taiwan’s cities have to offer travelers. True, Taipei has done pretty well for itself with Taipei 101 (which kind of serves double duty as overall branding icon for Taiwan), but I don’t believe that people visit Taipei specifically to visit Taipei 101. It may be a focus point, and a good symbol, but a visit to Taipei 101 should just be a small part of any Taipei visit.
我認為，像新加坡一樣，在傳達台灣的城市能提供給旅客的好處的時候，地標不會是最重要的部分。 的確，台北在101（台灣整體品牌形象的雙重職責）方面做得相當不錯，但我不相信觀光客為了101而專門去拜訪台北.這可能是一個焦點， 且一個很好的象徵，但是參觀台北101應該只是旅遊台北的一小部分。
Other Taiwanese cities offer their own unique variety of experiences and, like Singapore, defy traditional single-sentence branding.
Tainan (where the meeting was held) is a hotbed of culture – not just traditional Han Chinese culture, but a sort of new, hipster culture with a vibrant nightlife featuring artist-run coffee shops and collectives in winding cobblestone alleys built during the Qing dynasty. (Not for nothing is one of the chapters of my upcoming book called “Tainan is the Portland of Taiwan”.)
台南（會議的地點）是一個文化焦點，不僅是傳統的漢族文化，而且是一種新興的時髦文化，擁有充滿活力的夜生活，藝術家經營的咖啡店和聚集體在清朝修建的鵝卵石小巷。 （順便提一下, 我即將出版的“台南是台灣的波特蘭”書的其中一個章節是關於這個）
I spent a most excellent week in Taichung earlier this year, visiting world-class museums, art parks, restaurants and night markets. I also went scuba diving in a hotel in the middle of the city. (Google “Dive Cube Hotel Taichung” for more info on this most unique venue, a hotel with an 18-meter-deep scuba diving pool).
今年早些時候，我在台中度過了一個非常好的一周，參觀世界級的博物館，藝術公園，餐館和夜市。 我也在市中心的一家酒店去潛水。 （去谷歌:“台中潛水立方酒店”了解更多有關這個最獨特場地的資料，一家擁有18米深潛水游泳池的酒店）。
Kaohsiung, which many international visitors have traditionally seen as a place to pass through on the way to Kenting, is working to brand itself as a sort of slower-paced Taipei, an international harbor city with art, music and culture, not to mention amazing temples and superlative food. I spent several days there earlier this year and found it to be all that and more. Still, I’d be hard pressed to summarize this into a single sentence, let alone an icon – besides that hotel with the two legs (and maybe the Love River).
高雄，一個許多國際遊客被視為去墾丁必經過的地方，正在努力將自身品牌作為一種節奏慢台北的國際港口城市，藝術，音樂和文化，更何況驚人寺廟和最高級的食物。今年早些時候，我在那邊待了好幾天，發現它真的是這樣子, 還有更多。儘管如此，我還是很難把以上所說的總結成一句話，更不用說一個地標- 除了那個有兩條腿的酒店（也許愛河）。
And this may be for the best. To paraphrase another speaker at the seminar (one whose finger was firmly on the pulse of current travel trends), today’s travel trends are increasingly being shaped by millennials, and millennials are increasingly looking for experiences matching their own interests and passions, rather than some great collective consciousness’ idea of what a vacation should be.
Taiwan’s cities offer a vast array of experiences catering to a wide variety of interests. Though this wide appeal makes Taiwan’s cities difficult to “summarize”, it make them way more worth visiting.
這可能是最好的情形。我套用在研討會上的另一位發言人的話:（一個非常了解當前的旅遊潮流趨勢），今天的旅遊趨勢日益受到千禧狀，千禧一代越來越多人尋找配自己的興趣和愛好的經驗，而不是一些 “偉大集體” 認為怎麼樣才是渡假。
It’s just a question of getting the message out.
And New York City boy though I am, my advice to my friends in charge of doing this is to look to Singapore for inspiration.
Until next week, Joshua Samuel Brown
Editor in Chief, MyTaiwanTour
直到下週，喬舒亞·薩繆爾·布朗 (Joshua Samuel Brown)
(Branding Taiwan’s Cities 品牌化台灣的城市) originally ran at the MyTaiwanTour Journal. All photos and text posted in the above blog were taken from https://www.mytaiwantour.com/blog/. Follow this link for more stories like this one!
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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.