Living in Taipei

Located in northern Taiwan, Taipei, the nation・s capital,has always been the political and economic center of the country.It is also an international city with a population of over 2,600,000,the world・s tallest building (Taipei 101 Tower),a fast and easy Mass Rapid Transit (MRT, meaning metro) system, a bustling night-market culture, international cuisine,more shopping centers than any other major city in Asia, and host to world-class international performances. Apart from its modern side,Taipei has also inherited a rich culture of long traditions.The internationally renowned National Palace Museum is home to a resplendent display of treasures from Imperial China spanning many dynasties,and also is considered owner of the largest Asian antiquities collection in the world. Throughout the city,many artifacts, temples of historical value and old-style streets have been preserved. Just outside the city is Yangmingshan National Park with its extraordinary volcanic geological features,breathtaking flora and fauna,and a vast network of walking paths,which combine to create an exceptional natural environment and getaway for the inhabitants of Taipei.

  • Climate
  • Taipei is located in a natural basin, surrounded by mountains on all sides, and belongs to a subtropical region, which translates into high humidity. The summer months of May through September are very hot, whereas the relatively short winters (usually mid-December through February) can be quite cold. Taipei weather is unpredictable and can change rapidly--it may be 25 degrees Celsius (72 Fahrenheit) during the day, and 15 degrees Celsius (59 Fahrenheit) at night.

  • Living Expenses

  • Not including tuition, the average monthly cost of living in Taipei is approximately US$ 600 ~ 800, including food, rent, books, entertainment and other expenses. The average cost of meals per month is approximately NT$ 6,000 ~ 8,000 (US$ 200 ~ 270), rent for a single room per month runs approximately NT$ 6,000 ~ 10,000 (US$ 190 ~ 325). Compared to other major cities around the world, the cost of living in Taipei is very reasonable.

  • Foreign Exchange
  • The most commonly used form of currency in Taiwan is cash, so a supply of cash, ideally New Taiwan Dollars or a currency that is easily changed into NT Dollars (i.e. US Dollars), should always be on hand. VISA or Mastercard can be used reliably to obtain cash since a number of Taiwanese banks allow for to prepaying, and many ATM machines accept credit cards or ATM cards issued in foreign countries. If you choose this method, please be sure to confirm that you have an ample line of credit. The current (2012) rate of exchange is approximately NT$30/ US$1. It is best to exchange New Taiwan Dollars in Taiwan.

  • Working
  • If foreign students have the need to engage in part-time work, work-study or to take advantage of an internship opportunity while studying in Taiwan, they must obtain a work permit in accordance with the Employment Services Act, articles 43, 50, 68 and 78 as well as the laws and regulations pertinent to obtaining a permit for the employment and management of foreign nationals. Punishment for engaging in work without a permit in violation of the Employment Services Act, Article 43, includes a fine between NTD 30,000 and NTD 150,000 in addition to the possibility of immediate deportation and not being allowed to return to Taiwan for 5 years. This punishment is in accordance with the Operation Directions for Information on Entry Control of Foreign Nationals, Article 5.

    1. Work permits are issued for a maximum of 6 months. (Work permits issued during the fall semester are valid until 31 March, while those issued during the spring semester are valid until 30 September.)
    2. Time spent working is limited to 16 hours per week except during winter or summer vacation.
    3. Violations of the above mentioned limitations will result in your work permit being revoked in accordance with the Employment Services Act.
    4. Working without applying for a work permit will result in a fine between NTD 30,000 and NTD 150,000 in accordance with the Employment Services Act.
    5. Students who discontinue their studies and are in the possession of a valid work permit must return the work permit to the Office of International Affairs.

    For more detailed information, please inquire at the Division of International Student Affairs, Office of International Affairs.

    For more information about the relevant rules and regulations, inquire at Council of Labor Affairs.

  • Insurance
  • According to the Regulations Regarding International Students Undertaking Studies in Taiwan, at the time of registration, admitted students must either already have accident and medical insurance purchased in their home country valid from the time they enter Taiwan up to and including the first 4 months of study or have purchased 4 months of accident and medical insurance through the University. Those who already have National Health Insurance must provide proof of coverage. If the coverage was purchased overseas, proof of coverage must be verified by the ROC representative office in the country where the insurance was purchased.
    According to the Bureau of National Health Insurance, Department of Health, Executive Yuan, foreigners with an Alien Resident Certificate who have resided in Taiwan for four consecutive months must enroll in the National Health Insurance program. This is a mandatory regulation. International students who meet the conditions stated above must enroll in the NHI program.
    For more information please contactG