Traveling to Taiwan

Planning Your Trip

When is the best season to visit Taiwan?

With a subtropical climate, Taiwan’s four seasons all offer unique experiences.

Spring is a great time for enjoying the outdoors before the weather becomes too hot and muggy. Attractions during the spring include Taiwan’s cherry and plum blossoms, high mountain flowers, and mountain climbing.

The summer is warm and humid and characterized by afternoon thunderstorms. Summer is also the time to experience Taiwan’s flourishing arts and culture industry, with every larger city hosting multiple international arts, film, and children’s arts festivals.

Fall offers a respite from the heat and is a great time to visit the entire island. The weather is stable, comfortable, and fairy dry until the northwestern monsoon begins in November.

Winter is generally chilly, except for Kaohsiung and Taitung where most days are still warm enough for short-sleeves. For those who are worried about the heat, the cooler period between October and May is recommended. Taiwan’s 100+ hot springs are a must-visit during the winter months.

What should I pack for my trip to Taiwan?

Year-round clothing rules:

  • Rain: Due to the high probability of encountering rain year-round, a raincoat and umbrella are a must. Flip-flops, crocs, or any pair of quick-drying or waterproof footwear is very useful for beating afternoon showers.
  • Alpine regions: Taiwan’s alpine regions will always be around 10 C (18 F) cooler than temperatures at sea-level. Even in the summer it is advisable to bring a sweater or mid-layer which when combined with a raincoat or windbreaker will be sufficient for chilly nights in the mountains.
  • Indoors: Local shopping malls, movie theaters, hotels and transportation run air conditioning year round. Even in the summer, carrying a sweater or windbreaker to keep warm while taking the MRT or shopping is a good idea.

Spring: Sea level temperatures average 19-26 C (66-79 F): Short sleeves can be worn during the day time, but be sure to bring a fleece and wind-proof jacket for when the weather turns foul.

Summer: Sea level temperatures average 27-34 C (81-93 F). During the summer, quick drying synthetic clothing is one of the best ways to remain comfortable in the heat. Thin sunshirts and wide-brimmed hats offer full-proof sun protection that can’t be washed off by excessive sweating.

Fall: Sea level temperatures average 21-30 C (70-86 F). A mixture of short and long sleeves are suitable. Long pants become wearable as average day time temperatures recede. Fleeces and jackets become necessary for afternoons and trips into Taiwan’s high mountains.

Winter: Sea level temperatures average 14-20 C (57-68 F). Do not underestimate the difficulty of remaining warm in a humid cold climate. While these temperatures might not sound cold, most of Taiwan is wearing fleeces and down jackets due to the humidity. Long sleeves and jackets are a must. Consider bringing multiple layers to adjust to temperature changes.

Do I need a travel adapter?
Taiwan’s electrical outlets are identical to those used in the United States and Canada. Therefore, travelers from the United States and Canada do not need to prepare travel adapters when traveling to Taiwan. Taiwan operates on a 110V supply voltage and 60Hz, just like the United States.
Two Hole Socket
Three Hole Socket
How safe is Taiwan?
Taiwan consistently ranks as one of the safest countries in the world, and is safer than Hong Kong, Japan, and Switzerland. Incidents of violent crime and petty theft are extremely rare. Gun ownership is restricted with the exception of the indigenous population who are permitted to handcraft muskets for use in traditional hunting expeditions. In 2020, Taiwan was ranked the second safest country in the world by the global database Numbeo.

Arriving In Taiwan

Do I need a visa to enter Taiwan?

This depends on which passport you hold. Currently, residents of the United States of America, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, New Zealand, and many other countries do not require to apply for a visa to travel to Taiwan and may stay visa-free for a duration of 90 days. For a full list of visa-exempt countries please refer to the Bureau of Consular Affairs Visa-Exempt Entry page.

Passport holders from countries not eligible for visa-free entry may still apply for tourist visas provided their passport is valid for at least 6 more months. For any further information, please visit the website of the Bureau of Consular Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. For any further questions about visa application, please contact: e-mail:, TEL: +886-2-2343-2888.

What is Taiwan’s COVID-19 policy?
No COVID-19-related screening policy exists anymore for travelers entering Taiwan. Travelers no longer have to provide a negative COVID-19 test result before boarding a plane to Taiwan, and negative test results are not required to enter Taiwan. Traveling through Taoyuan Airport is, once again, as smooth as ever. Airline passengers may also transit through Taiwan normally.
What happens if I catch COVID-19 while in Taiwan?

Travelers who receive a positive quick test for COVID-19 should follow the “0+n self-health management” approach. No quarantine is required, but unnecessary departures from their residence/hotel room should be avoided and masks should be worn at all times when outside. These procedures should be followed until a negative quick test is received, or 10 days after the most recent positive test. (For more info please refer to the Taiwan Tourism Bureau and Taiwan CDC’s 3/20/2023 Press Release)

Does everyone wear masks in Taiwan? Are there any rules?
Currently, mask rules have been relaxed and face masks are only required in health care facilities and ambulances. Masks are not required on public transportation, but many Taiwanese will wear them out of habit.
What do I need to declare at customs?
Generally only large amounts of currency (over $10,000 or NT$100,000) need to be declared when entering the country. Please refer to Taiwan’s customs explainer video for inbound passengers for more information on customs regulations.
How do I use my phone in Taiwan? Where can I purchase a SIM card?
Taiwan is one of the most wired countries in the world. Mobile internet is extremely fast and coverage is excellent, even Taiwan’s alpine peaks will have designated areas where 4G reception is guaranteed in most weather conditions. SIM cards may be purchased upon landing at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport and are cheaper than similar services in the United States. Expect to pay around 20-30 USD for a month of 4G service in Taiwan with a pay-as-you-go SIM and significantly less for regular phone service.
What currency is used in Taiwan?
The Republic of China’s (Taiwan’s) unit of currency is the New Taiwan Dollar (NT$), which has five denominations in paper money and five in coins. Paper money comes in NT$2000, NT$1000, NT$500, NT$200, and NT$100 denominations. Coins come in NT$50, NT$20, NT$10, NT$5 and NT$1 denominations.
Where can I exchange foreign currency?
The Taoyuan airport has multiple kiosks run by Taiwanese banks. Both the rates offered at the airport and in larger banks are usually superior to rates offered abroad. Be aware, outside of major cities with large banks, cash exchange might be difficult or impossible.
Can I use credit cards or traveler’s checks?

Taiwan is still mostly a cash-only society. Credit cards will be accepted at most hotels, larger retail stores, and tourist oriented businesses. However, it is common for restaurants to operate on a cash only basis, so have cash prepared when eating out. In addition, most stores in Taiwan do not accept travelers checks.

Traveling Within Taiwan

Do Taiwanese speak English?

Employees at the airport, popular tourist destinations, hotels, and government offices are generally able to communicate with visitors in English.

How do I send letters, postcards, and packages?
The rate for domestic express letters is NT$8 (30 cents), and NT$15 (50 cents) for prompt delivery. There is also a domestic super-express mail, which is expensive, but your letter is guaranteed to be delivered anywhere on Taiwan’s mainland in under a day. International express mail service (“EMS”) is highly reliable and generally cheaper than comparable services in other countries. For further information, please check with Chunghwa Post, or contact the Voice Service Hotline: 0800-700-365
What is it like traveling through Taiwan?

Taiwan’s unique mountainous geography makes for densely populated urban cities and highly accessible wilderness areas. Taiwan is referred to locally as a “precious island” for its pristine natural resources, healthy food, and comfortable lifestyle. Modern 7-seater vans are popular for private tours and traveling in comfort is the norm. For individual travelers, Taiwan’s mass rapid transit, high speed rail, and regular train system are all modern, punctual, and extremely convenient means of exploring the island.

How big is Taiwan?
Geographically speaking, Taiwan is about the size of the state of Maryland or the country of Scotland. Compared to the United States, it is over 100 times smaller, but, at 23,000,000 habitants, its population is nearly 8% that of the US. Taiwan has 268 3,000m (10,000 ft) peaks in its Central Mountain Range, the US only has 477 in total.
What languages are spoken in Taiwan?

English: Most Taiwanese have received basic education in English and have been exposed to Western culture. American sports teams, music, films, and television series are popular among Taiwanese youth.

Mandarin Chinese: Introduced in the late 1940s with the arrival of the KMT government from China. It is now the official language of Taiwan, and spoken by the majority of the population (~85%).

Taiwanese Hokkien: Is the oldest Chinese language spoken in Taiwan. It is mostly spoken by the older generation (~83%) and is more common in the South.

Hakka: Spoken by around 6% of the population who are ethnic Hakka. There are also 16 recognized indigenous ethnicities each with their own living language.

Indigenous Languages: Of the indigenous languages that still remain, Amis, Atayal, Paiwan, and Bunan are the most popular and might be encountered on a trip outside of the urban areas.

What times are businesses open?

The following times serve as guidelines but please be aware many restaurants and businesses keep their own business hours. It’s not uncommon for a restaurant to be open until midnight in large cities, but for all restaurants to close around 6 PM or 7 PM in the countryside.


08:30~12:30, 13:30~17:30



Department Stores

Open almost daily


Open almost everyday except for the Chinese Lunar New Year.

Convenience Stores

Open daily, 24 hours a day
(some stores open at 07:00~23:00)


Most open daily
Lunch 11:00~14:00
Dinner 17:00~22:00
(afternoon tea at 14:00~17:00)

Departing from Taiwan

How do I apply for a VAT Refund?
Foreign travelers who enter the R.O.C. with the following documents: (1) passport of a country other than the R.O.C. (2) R.O.C. passport without personal ID No. recorded. and stay for no more than 183 days from the date of arrival are eligible for a VAT refund. Purchases of at least NT$2,000 from designated “Taiwan Tax Refund” stores are eligible to have their VAT refunded. Passengers should request a “Application Form for VAT Refund” at their port of their departure from the R.O.C. within 90 days of the date of purchase. They must also be taking the purchased goods out of the country with them for the refund to be granted. Places to apply for VAT REFUND:
  1. Tax Refund Service Counters are available at airports, ports and in designated areas around the country.
  2. Authorized “Taiwan Tax Refund” stores may offer tax refunds on-site.
For more information please visit:
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