Retiring in Taiwan


I spend a lot of time in Malaysia for business and as a whole it is nowhere near Taiwan in terms of general living standards. I love to visit but I couldn't live there.

I don't see Malaysia becoming a true first world country any time soon because it suffers from the same segregational mindset as the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand etc. - build new, flashy tourist areas on foreign money and make sure all the plebby locals are kept away. As far as any tourists are concerned you have a wealthy, modern country but the proletarians' lifestyle just gets shittier.

Some people have mentioned that the food and transport in KL are great. Yes, if you can afford it there are better western food options than Taiwan and they have a monorail serving the wealthier parts of town. However once you leave that monorail area everything becomes distinctly third world, and having so many poor Malaysians looking on at all this wealth is a recipe for disaster.

Also as far as I'm concerned any country that requires fishing for coins to take a shit is not worth my time. That includes most of Europe.


Basically yes. In Taiwan the doctor may speak English but the staff won't, especially the nurses and since they do most of the work your stay is not as pleasant.


Ain't that the truth.

I went through this experience when a "nurse" was draining a cyst on my back and went around the room asking patients if any of them spoke English, bringing one over who did to translate. I was mortified. I can't even imagine what he must have felt. I saw him in the lobby by the cashiers and apologized that he had to witness that.


Well again for me, language wouldn't be an issue. That is something any potential retiree would have to consider, though, for sure.


I don't know about Western food in KL or other parts of Malaysia, but I think even the local foods there are great--what a fabulous fusion of Chinese, Malay and Indian cuisines. Very inexpensive, too. I doubt I'd live in KL anyway, even though I like it. I would probably go for Penang or somewhere in the highlands.

But Taiwan is where my heart is...if they'd only give me a geezer visa!


Roy, you should be able to pull some strings, with your pass work position back in Taiwan. You may also start a business as an immigration consultant.

I have always been a fan of your blog, while it was still in existence. Especially your reviews on restaurants. PM me if you ever get to visit Taipei again. We can meet at my favorite hotpot place. or wherever of your choosing.


A small-fry like me couldn't pull the strings of anyone that mattered. I'm hoping the government there sees the light and enacts the geezer visa. It could be Taiwan's next big growth industry. Believe it or not, there are investors here scouting out Laos for the same thing. The main drawback for Laos is the poor state of health care--if they get that sorted, the geezer visa would be huge here.

re my blog: thanks for reading, those were the good old days. If I make it back to Taiwan one of these days, I'll certainly take you up on your hotpot meet-up offer.


Does anyone know what the law is regarding retirement age. Can a company tell you that you have to retire once you are past 65 because "that is the law?"


In Taiwan? Well, practically, it doesn't matter what the law is in Taiwan for two reasons. Firstly, bosses will do what they like and most Taiwanese employees won't fight them on it. There are already all sorts of provisions to do with anti-discrimination, for example, but ask pregnant women (or those who have just given birth) how that works out. Secondly, even if someone did want to fight it, they'd have to deal with a legal and political system that is heavily pro-business/employer. Taiwan most definitely eats it own. If you're poor or lack power in some other way, you're shit out of luck in this country.


I have no idea, but it seems to me that people in Taiwan retire at any age ... after working 25 years or so ... I know several people that are 'retired', younger than I am ... and now they took on another job and cashed in their retirement money, lump sum ...


Yes, that's true -- but what I'm asking about is whether a company can force you to retire, solely because you are 65 (or older).


My father-in-law (Taiwanese) was forced to retire at age 60, the minimum age at which he could receive retirement benefits from the labor insurance that he'd paid in. I'm not sure what would have happened if he didn't agree to retire at that time, but I think the employer had more leverage than he did, so there's probably not much he could've done about it.


Fact is, Taiwan is very unfriendly towards older laborers who are still able bodied. For whatever reason employers will not employ elders who are able bodied. I have visited a soup kitchen in Taipei and a vast majority of the people there are over 50 years old, and they're homeless because no one would hire them. The only way they can get any sort of work is to work for people who paid less than 300nt a day for a lot of hours of work and they have no legal recourse because the government looks out for the employers, and also the older folks simply do not have the resource to fight it.

I think a part of the problem is that people refuse to stand up to unfair treatments for whatever reason. The only reason laborers are given better treatments in the West is because people organized and fought the employers due to unfair treatment, but that simply does not happen here. Most people simply let their employer push them around and wouldn't even think of organizing, perhaps because people here are such loners.


I signed up for my membership just few days ago. I am interested in discussions regarding to retirement in Taiwan as a dual citizen (Taiwan and US). I plan to do that within short few years. I have questions that my family and friends in Taiwan do not have answers for. I have not found much discussion in this area. Wonder if anyone can provide any suggestions where to look?


Taiwan needs to get on this.


I was being scolded as I usually am by by neighbors on the garbage line. Save money! Don’t spend so much! Save for retirement! Do not keep so many pets!

I tell them that I will not go back to my country when I retire. That usually shuts them down as they can only shake their heads in amazement. Then the lady who sells veggies tells me she’s got a nuce little plot for her and her hubby when they retire, where they will plant veggies. So I should save to buy a house in the country where I can have as many cats as I wish…

Ayioo. It is going to be a long summer.

At least I do not have to worry about visas, having an APRC and looking forward to nationality. But if we could have special retirement visas my mom could be here. My auntie and her hubby now in Filipinas would be here. As ethnic Chinese and ec US residents they would enjoy the safety in Taiwan a lot. And contribute a lotta money and otherwise.

Our nieces and nephews would have more reason to visit us in Taiwan. Maybe take a term or two of Chinese. Contribute to the economy.


Taiwan is pretty backwards on this, but it’s backwards on almost all things to do with immigration.
So many opportunities are missed.

Heck I have a Taiwanese passport but am somehow not Taiwanese , try explaining that to anybody!?!

Taiwan doesn’t care about these types of visas cos they only ever think about overseas Taiwanese Chinese and dual nationals.

There was some scheme a few years ago for Japanese but was a miserable failure.

If some develooers link it with property investment then it’ll probably get some support .


Yes Taiwan should consider something like this but it would lose money because older retired people have a lot of heavy medical expenses that Taiwan would be absorbing.

Thailand doesn’t provide the somewhat universal healthcare like Taiwan. So the Thailand government and taxpayer doesn’t need to absorb those costs. In fact, those retired people bring their own money and spend it on Healthcare in Thailand so it’s an additional benefit to Thailand.


They just need to make it so that retirees pay more, based on income bracket, or can benefit with full NHI after X number of quotas, to insure they will stay - unlike Overseas compatriots who live abroad, do not pay but come to Taiwan to enjoy benefits after paying just one quota.

Retiree visa beneficiaries could show they have insurance or made to purchase a special insurance. I am sure the local insurance companies could come up with a profitable plan.


The retirees wouldn’t have the same access as locals, there’s no problem in that regard. Total non issue.