Banking in Taiwan - Good and Bad

I looked around at various threads and found various information of experiences but it doesn’t seem to be compiled. Thus, I thought I would start anew.
First, Hsinchu Bank - Actually, I happened to wander into this bank in Hukou many years ago and was treated very well. I was always offered tea and was treated very well. They used to have a branch in Banchio but I dont know if it still exists. Yet, they were good at what they did and I never had a complaint.
China Trust - Damn! I feel like ducking from the barrage of complaints. Actually they treated me fairly well. My big complaint was that their service counter was alwas on the second floor and I had to get my tab on the first. I was always having to backtrack. OK. not a big problem and I have never had a big service problem. Actually, I consider them to have done a good job.
First Bank - OK. Here is were the shit hits the fan. I had had this account for a number of years. It was near my house and was an easy access for me. However, I happenned to drop my card into a HuaNan Bank ATM machines one night. The machine was out of money and I departed, stupidly, without my card. A few minutes later I returned and had absolutely no luck in explaining what had happened. OH Well, It was Saturday night and I knew that I am not going to get ripped off. Just wait it out and see FIRST BANK on Monday am. No Problem. However . . . . . Monday comes and I report it. There I am told to wait 7 days because somebody may turn it in. Well, through the thick lividity of my otherwise stoic composure, I am certain that I had a few words of advice. Instead of waiting I immeditaly closed my account at First Bank. (Nobody incquired why) So, now off to find a new bank. Merrily on my way with a wallet stuffed to semi-overflowing. Since I work often near Banciao Main, I stopped in at CHB. Hell, seems good to me.Well, I got my number and waited as a good foreigner should. When it came up, I eagerly presented myself only to be told to wait wait wait. OK. I know. So finally a woman approaches me and asks me to sit. while she towers over me. (almost a good time) Anyway, she explains to me that the Taiwan government demands to know why I want to have a bank account. mmmmmmmmmm. Well, after a few moments of introflection of my dastardly purposes, I responded that I was opening accounts across Taiwan because it was my hobby. Obviosly this had little latitude with “Hilda from the House of Pain” and she assured me that she was not enamoured. OK OK OK. I do this thing for “convenience”. Hell, everybody knows “convenience” it will get me an account, I am convinced.of it. However, Hilga at HCB informs me that I don’t live in this jurisdiction and “HER” government wants me to open my account near my home.
Well, since this isn’t America and I dont work for the postal service, I simply give a weak smile and agree that I have been a total stupid dumb fuck for even tryin such a ridiculous stunt. I gather my docs and get the hell out of Dodge before Helga opens fire. I walk across the street to Kings Bank (which by the way is a true Taiwan Bank) and meet the most lovely and helpful clerks that you can imagine. They not only want my money, they welcome it with open arms.
Now, CHB had no idea of what I wanted their piss ant fucking bank for. I desired to use it as a repository for my retirement funds and bonus funds coming from the states. So they essentually turned down funds coming from abroad because of Hilda.
Anyway. I would steer cleear of CHB unless you like handcuffs and very little latitude.
Kings Bank is fairly new here but it is a truly Taiwan Bank and I feel comfortable with my funds there.
More bank stories are welcome. I am sure there are many.

Completely useless - don’t waste your time. This is noise on the board and counterproductive.

My main complaint is the “banking hours” they keep. Closing at 3:30pm…WTF?

I’ve used YuShan, who have been great (but long waits, branches are always very busy), and TaiHsin, who have been nice enough but mostly pretty useless.

Had good service with three different Changhwa bank branches (Zhonghe, Zhongxiao E. Rd by San Want Hotel, Minsheng E. Rd/SongShan Branch). Draw back is it’s all manual type of banking. You need to show up and talk to a teller to get anything done.

Entie Bank hasn’t been so bad, but their overseas support and credit card support sucks. I’m looking to dump them.

HSBC, big bank experience. Predictable in every way. Their Malaysian branches feel and work about the same as the Taiwan one. Their online Premier service is quite handy and nice so can’t complain. It actually helps deliver convenience (oversea transfers, online payments for utilities, bills etc) at a reasonable price and convenience.

When the Tax Office people ask me why I have so many bank accounts, I reply that my Taiwanese friends told me that banks here are not reliable, so I spread the wealth. They do not ask much after that.

I love the Post office, and would rely on them for all my needs if it wasn’t for the foreign transactions I have to make, and the credit cards.

Most of the negative stories I have come from banks I was stuck with, not chose, like First Bank -our school demanded us to open an account with them- and Hualien -anyone remember that one?

ICBC/now Megabank has given me great service. They are on the ball, but their international charges are awfully expensive.

And why do I need a guarantor for a safety box?! Actually, they are not the only ones who ask for this.

Fubon is mostly OK and reliable, but still has a lot of hurdles for furriners. Mmm, if I had their credit card… (Dream on!)

Chinatrust is a mess. Took the guy one hour to open my account. Took me months to close it. I have their credit card but the service is really bad, impolite, and mostly unsafe. Their websites are hacked left and right, as well as their phone lines so you never know if you are talking to the real deal or a swindler. Had a couple of close calls with that one.

Enigma, you should consider yourself really lucky for not putting your money in CHB. There is a list of banks that are about to go bust, and I think that is at the top.

Yellow Cartman, you are right, I have heard wonderful things about HSBC. However, they do not want my money, pity.

I wish Forumosa would/could open up some type of credit union for foreigners here in Taiwan. Big business. Big business.

I second this. Maoman et al: Any way we could get a credit union?

And to the more established lifers: Would having a credit union for foreigners actually benefit your/our lives? Maybe this could help pay for the forums…