Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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Where is Taiwan located?

Taiwan is situated off the southeast coast of the Asian continent, about 100 miles across the Taiwan Straits from mainland China. It is one of a string of East Asian islands. It lies between Japan (to the north) and the Philippines (to the south) and is an essential hub for travel to Asia.

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When is the best time of year to visit?

Taiwan offers excellent activities at all times of the year. Typhoon season occurs in the summer months, primarily August through October. Yet, overall Taiwan's weather is temperate hot and humid in the summer months. We strongly suggest travelers pack in !'layered!( manner, especially when traveling outside of Taiwan to the mountainous areas which can get cooler due to the changes in elevation.

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Do I need a passport to travel to Taiwan?

Yes.

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Is a Visa required for entry into Taiwan?

No. U.S. passport holders are allowed to enter into Taiwan without a visa for up to thirty days (no extensions allowed) if their passport is valid for at least six months from the date of entry into Taiwan and the traveler has a confirmed return or onward air ticket. (Travelers must have already met any additional visa requirements for the next destination if applicable.) Travelers also have the additional option of applying for and receiving a Taiwan visa prior to arrival in Taiwan (The processing fee is US$100.00).

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How do I obtain a visa for travel to Taiwan?

Contact one several of Taiwan's counselor offices in the United States. For a full list of Taipei Economic and Cultural Representatives in the United States as well as visa applications, visit www.boca.gov.tw.

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Do I have to pay a domestic airport departure tax?

No

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What are the limits for Customs?

Receipts are issued when currency is exchanged and these should be kept if you wish to exchange NT$ before departing the country.

Visitors may take the following into Taiwan duty free:
Alcohol - 1 liter of alcoholic beverages
Tobacco - 200 cigarettes, 25 cigars or 454g (1lb) of tobacco

Penalties for carrying or trafficking illegal drugs are extremely severe, ranging from long prisonolic beverages

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Do people speak English in Taiwan?

English is taught in schools and is rapidly becoming a third major language in Taiwan, especially in urban areas. However, beyond the major cities, English is not widely used. Most major businesses which cater to tourists (international hotels, restaurants, attractions) will have employees who speak English. Many taxi drivers in Taipei understand basic English but it is always wise to advise travelers to get directions written in Chinese (roundtrip). Often, hotels will provide English speaking travelers with hotel direction cards which can be given to taxi drivers for ease of mobility. Restaurants also often have English menus. For business travelers, there are several opportunities to learn some basic Chinese. Although Chinese and Taiwanese are known for their level of difficulty, it is worth investing in some basic language lessons if travelers plan to be in the area for an extended period or plan to return often.

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How long does it take to travel by airplane to Taiwan?

Direct flights from Los Angeles to Taipei are estimated at about 15 hours, and return flights are 10 hours.

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What is the weather like in Taiwan?

Taiwan's temperatures are temperate year round. Annual average temperatures range from 68 to 77"XF. Average temperature in January is between 55-69"XF, and 75-84"XF in July. Taiwan straddles the Tropic of Cancer in the Pacific Ocean and enjoys a subtropical climate with four seasons. Typhoon season is from June-October. Taiwan has an average of four typhoons per year.

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When is the best time to visit Taiwan?

Taiwan is a year-round destination. . Summer (June-August) is the warmest and most humid part of the year. Autumn (September-November) is the driest and most comfortable season.

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What resources are available to help me plan my vacation in Taiwan?

There are 3 Taiwan tourism offices that are located in Los Angeles, CA (213-389-1158/latva@pacbell.net), New York City, NY (212-867-1632 / tbrocnyc@aol.com) and San Francisco, CA (415-989-8677 / info@visittaiwan.org) . These offices are happy to send brochures and detailed information and maps of Taiwan. A new consumer travel web site is available at www.Go2Taiwan.net. Several resource links are available there to help travelers and specialists plan a vacation to Taiwan.

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Should I bring my children to Taiwan? Is it safe for them?

Yes! Taiwan is an extremely safe and interesting destination for families. Children and the elderly are honored there.

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Is the food and water safe for me to consume?

Taiwan offers some of the best culinary delights in all of Asia. Just like in any country it is important to make proper judgment calls on what you choose to eat. Night markets are also safe and for an exciting gourmet experience travelers should go to these markets and try the different treats that are sold there. Water is also safe to drink, but just as in the United States, the purest water always comes from a bottle. We suggest drinking bottled water.

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What type of currency is used in Taiwan?

The official unit of currency is the New Taiwan Dollar (NT$). Coins are in denominations of 1, 5, 10 and 50. Bills are in denominations of 50, 100, 500 and 1000. For some time, the NT has been valued at 34 NT = 1 US Dollar. Keep in mind exchange rates fluctuate daily, and it is best to verify rates before departure using an international currency converter, such as www.oanda.com. Travelers can print off wallet sized cheat sheets off the site to carry with them.

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How do I exchange my U.S. Dollars?

Foreign currency and travelers checks can be changed at the two international airports and at large banks, such as the International Bank of China (ICBC) and Bank of Taiwan. Typical banking hours are Mon-Fri 9:00am-3:30pm and Sat 9:00am-Noon. Most larger hotels will provide foreign exchange for their guests. ATM machines with international settlement systems (i.e., Cirrus, Interlink, Global Access, Plus, etc.) are readily available in the city. Major credit cards are accepted at most large hotels, restaurants and shops. Smaller establishments may not accept credit cards or travelers checks, so travelers should always be prepared with NT cash. U.S. dollar bills and other foreign currencies are not widely accepted in shops and hotels.

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What are the banking hours in Taiwan?

Monday to Friday 9.00 am to 3.30 pm
Saturday 9.00 am to 12.00 pm

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What are the Telephone Codes for Taiwan?

When calling TO Taiwan from the U.S. dial (011) 886 +area code + telephone number

When making international calls FROM Taiwan, first dial 002 +country code + area code + telephone number

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Local Area Codes

  • Haulien 038
  • Hsinchu City 03
  • Kaohsiung 07
  • Taichung 04
  • Taipei 02
  • Taitung 089
  • Tsaochiao 037
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Is tipping required in Taiwan?

Tips are not usually expected in Taiwan, especially in restaurants and taxis. However, a small tip for bellboys or airport porters is appreciated (about $1 US per piece of luggage). Hotels normally include a 10-percent service charge with room rates and meals.

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Will I be able to use my electrical equipment in Taiwan?

Taiwan uses the same standards for electric power as the United States, 110V, 60Hz. Most 110V sockets have two vertical slots, and closely resemble the American system, except there is not a third prong for grounding. A small adapter may come in handy for travelers who need to use their own electrical devices

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Who should I contact if I have an emergency in Taiwan or lose my passport?

Because the United States does not recognize Taiwan as a sovereign state, it does not have an Embassy or Consulate on the island. However, the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) (www.ait.org.tw) has offices in Taipei and Kaohsiung. AIT is authorized by the U.S. government to provide passport and emergency assistance for U.S. citizens in Taiwan.

  • AIT Taipei Office

    Address: 2nd Floor, Consular Section #7, Lane 134, Hsin Yi road, Section 3 Taipei, 106

    Phone: (02)2162-2000

    Fax: (02)2162-2239

  • AIT Kaohsiung Office

    Address: 5th Floor, #2 Chung Cheng 3 Road Kaohsiung, 802

    Phone: (07)238-7744

    Fax: (07)238-5237

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At which events can I meet Taiwan Tourism Bureau staff members in person?

Check out !'What New!( section for where we will be at next or check our events calendar which is updated quarterly.

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We are a hotel, airline, convention center, restaurant, DMC...and would like to be listed on the Taiwan Tourism Bureau's website as well as know what partnership opportunities are available to us; how can we do this?

Please send us an e-mail at taiwantourismusa@carlson.com  to put in a request for partnership. Be sure to specify the purpose of your request.

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Oops, I found a mistake or out-of-date information on your website!

Please contact us immediately so we can fix it! You can e-mail us at: Taiwantourismusa@carlson.com.  Thank you!