Any comments, corrections, etc. are fully welcome.
- Need to fill in the form here WITHIN 48 hours before arriving in Taiwan (less than 48 hours of arriving in Taiwan):
- Need a COVID-19 PCR test report within 3 days of departure.
Must be “COVID-19 RT-PCR test” indicating a negative result.
You will be denied boarding in the US or maybe turned away at Taiwan airport if, for example, you have an antigen test result instead of the COVID-19 RT-PCR test result.
- Need to book a quarantine hotel here:
I believe the form in 1 above requires the hotel information.
Need a cell phone.
Need to buy a SIM card in the airport after arriving.
Additional information related to the cell phone.
Questions asked on a forum.
a) Do they install the SIM card for you?
b) Does the brand of the phone matter?
Answer I got.
(a) they can
(b) Probably, since some phones don’t work with the type of SIM card that Taiwan uses, and of course some phones are carrier-locked anyway and can’t be changed.
If her phone is incompatible, she can rent one from them. They will install the app at the airport and fill in the information, or at least that’s how it worked when I came back (there have probably been changes since then). Unfortunately, someone will have to take the phone back to the airport to return it at the end of the rental period. You can ask if there are other drop-off locations.
She will have to put down a deposit on the phone in addition to paying the rental fee. A US$100 bill is acceptable. They clip it to the rental form, put it in a folder, and return the exact same bill to you when you return the phone.
Thanks - can we pin this? I feel more people are going to start to travel this summer.
We could add in some info about travel home, if you’re not needing a quarantine hotel.
If you absolutely can’t get the RT-PCR test in your location, you can get the airline to talk to the Taiwan authorities for permission to board. They gave me a “yes” at the exact moment my test report came through, but in theory I could have boarded on the basis that a test was in progress. They may make other exceptions. There is a downloadable affidavit you can print out if there is no way at all to get the test.
Your phone needs to be 4G compatible (the 3G network has been shut down) but that is unlikely to be an issue for most people.
There doesn’t appear to be an app, as such. You have to fill in a bunch of online nonsense - for which you need a web browser - but surprisingly they don’t install any kind of tracker on your phone.
They talk you through everything (one-to-one) the moment you step off the plane, and there’s nothing confrontational about it. After that you’re on your own. You’ll have a chance to use the ATM. They will spray you with alcohol when you get into the taxi. When you get home (or to your hotel) you’ll get a daily text, a daily phone call, and possibly a one-off call from the LiZhang. Just stay indoors for the mandated 14 days. Nobody’s tracking your GPS location, but they may be watching your cellphone tower ping, and your neighbors will almost certainly rat on you if you decide to sneak out.
Don’t forget to acquire some facemasks if you don’t have some already. You will at some point receive a “care package” with some indecipherable Chinese instructions and some free masks.
Quarantine hotel update.
You need to navigate this site:
For Taipei, here is the list of hotels separated in groups depending on district:
I found the one I wanted and called them. They are sending me a form to fill out soon. I’ll update if there is anything useful to add, any problems, etc.
I had to do this again at the airport after I got the local SIM. Not saying not to do it before arrival as instructed, just be ready to do it again. They had a QR code set up right after the SIM station, I walked past it and got in a line because I thought I had already done it, but no it had to be done again (I found out at the front of the line).
I also had proof of quarantine hotel registration, a Chinese language document with a stamp. I printed it along with my COVID test results to show at boarding and after arrival.
Filled out the form then received confirmation in a few hours. About 6,000 nt per night for 15 nights. Expensive but most of the Taipei places didn’t seem cheap. And food is included so that makes things seem a little less expensive. Oh and the airport pickup in the special taxi is also included.
So this will interesting having my 82 year old mom go through this process. I wish I could meet her at the airport and do all these things for her.
Hey @marasan, something that might be helpful. When I get my daily text asking how I feel, and I answer 1 (or 1. or 1. with a space after) they keep texting until they give up and call so I can press 1 for the tone reader. Your mom might be frustrated/confused/scared when she texts back 1 the first time and they don’t accept. No need to worry because eventually they give up with texting and call.
I have found that it works if I copy/paste/send the 1 from their message, rather than use the 1 from my keyboard. I don’t know what it is that makes it different (I’m surprised they aren’t both plain text 1s, but what do I know?)
Anyways, just don’t let her get stressed. If the system doesn’t accept her 1, she can either wait for the call or copy/paste. Maybe it will work for her. Hope everything works out smooth and easy (I was impressed with the airport and taxi when I went through)
Thanks a lot for that! I was just talking to my sister yesterday about teaching our mom phone basics. My guess is that they’ll learn soon enough to just call every time!
She’s had the vaccination, BTW. I know it doesn’t make a difference but it does make me feel better. Many Taiwanese returning knowing they’re infected.
Automated, they didn’t learn with me and it took me a few days to find the copy/paste solution. Anyways, I think the easy thing if she’s not great with phones is suggest she ignores the automated texts and waits for the automated call, then press 1 when the recording asks. As long as she knows how to get the keypad on screen during a call!
(probably my stupid canadian phone anyways, sending a french 1 or something, she’ll probably be fine)
So as long as you board in other location than the US you are fine and don’t need a test ?
You need a test no matter where you’re coming from.
Hi, I’ve just relocated to Taipei for work. Originally from Singapore but moved here from the UK. I’m currently in the centralised quarantine facility, so sharing my latest experience for your reference.
Note, this is only for arrivals from UK, South Africa and Brazil. Or any other countries with new variants that are deemed highly contagious.
On top of the PCR test and etc, once you arrive in Taipei, they will ask you to disembark first. You’ll then be escorted to a separate area where they will register you for the quarantine. They will also get you to purchase a local prepaid SIM at this point. After that, you pass immigration and collect your bags before boarding a tour bus (don’t expect too much).
The facility that I’m in is a converted training centre. It has dormitory-like lodging (imagine a basic low-end B&B) that you will check into. The check-in experience can be rather overwhelming, especially after a long journey and if it is your first time in Taiwan. The check-in staff will spray your hands with sanitiser (and your bags - just in case) and you wait for your turn to get a temperature check, legal agreement of the quarantine signed, dietary choices confirmed, then up into your room.
Facilities are basic, bedding is not great, you get a box of water, some snacks and essentials such as toiletries. There is free WiFi and it has decent speed. Please do not expect anything that is close to a hotel. Bear in mind this is Free of Charge - though you would wished that you can pay for a hotel instead.
Make sure you pack things you would like for the 14 days. I would recommend your own bath towel, toiletries (for 14 days), instant coffee/tea bags, some snacks - compact ones, and books that you always wanted to read but didn’t get round to read.
I have a friend who will be coming in April. He was hoping for a home quarantine. I understand this is no longer possible, am I right?
if the regulation is still the same, he can do it, if the house is empty.
Yea I think he is coming here long term and I feel his issue is that he would need to rent a house online, have the keys mailed to him, and the house be emptied.
What have other people arriving here for employment experienced?
I’m planning to check into a hotel or AirBnB after my quarantine. Renting only after I know where I want to stay long term (more to consider and only deciding on area after I’m familiar). Maybe something for your friend to consider as well.
Even if you have your own apartment? I didn’t.
That was at the time I did it. It may change depending on the whims of the rental place, amount may vary with the models of phones they have available, etc.
Are you quite sure about that? I know the CDC contractor filled in a bunch of information on a form on the one I rented. I thought it was an app. I never bothered to look any further, though.
I was a bit annoyed with the guy who was calling me. The first day he tried to catch me out by waiting until 11pm, just in case I went out clubbing or something. Not only did he wake me up, I couldn’t get to the phone in time to answer and had to call him back. Jerk.
Oh yeah, forgot about that. They didn’t just spray my hands, they sprayed everything I was wearing too. I’m glad it didn’t damage my clothing.
Additional info. No landing visas. Get a visa while in your home country.