Cell phone contracts & Foreigners: Sorry, I have to vent


LOL is right. When I came here in 2011, I used my Passport and ARC to sign up at Taiwan Mobile. Nothing else required other than paying for the phone I bought and signing up for the plan.


[quote=“headhonchoII”]National telecommunication commission changed the Rules again and now they allow foreigners to show a passport and ARC instead of a passport and another form of local ID.
I swear they do this shit on purpose.[/quote]

Not funny.


Update on the situation for foreign residents to get a phone contract at ChungHwa Telecom.

ChungHwa Telecom has 3 levels of retailers:

  • ChungHwa Telecom-branded, operated by ChungHwa Telecom
  • ChungHwa Telecom-branded, operated by Senao
  • Independent retailers, who offer multiple phone company’s products, including CHT’s via agreement with Senao

Senao currently has an explicit policy to deny all foreign residents the ability to apply for a phone contract. Additionally, the contract that independent retailers have with Senao disallows them to provide service to foreign residents.

Senao claims that this policy is a requirement of ChungHwa Telecom. However, management at CHT disagrees and says there is no such requirement.


OP here. That above is why I will never use their service. Fortunately they don’t have a monopoly, and I’m still with Taiwan Mobile to this day. I’ve never been treated like an undesirable by Dageda.


I have a contract with Senao and CHT.


CHT and FarEast told me I could have a contract, but I would pay double the local rate and would have to lay down a deposit. CHT said the same for the cable and internet at home.

I have heard that it is only for the first contract. After that, it drops to “local” rates.


What? I’ve had a contract with CHT for many years. Direct contract with them for phone, internet and MOD, no different prices from the locals, even on my first contract. Only had to leave a small deposit, which don’t remember it being that big.


Don’t shoot the messenger. I am only repeating what was told to me.


Sorry to hear your experience.
The guy’s a stubborn idiot.
Hopefully you’ll have better luck with 台灣大哥大 or 中華電信.

I can relate to you with the “I’ll always be a outsider” thing.
No matter how good my English is or no matter how hard I try to blend in with the locals in the Western countries, they will always see me as a strange Chinese from China who must know kung-fu and somehow speaks their language. Sigh.


i’ve not had any problems with da ge da either. i can remember the first place i went to (no idea what company as it was one of the first days i was in taiwan) giving me a lot of hassle.


I have used all 3 carriers over the years, the first when I came to Taiwan was Chunghua. I didn’t even have an arc but the nice lady at the corporate locations hooked me up without a deposit. I’ve heard some locations insists foreigners pay a $2900 deposit as I remember.

Signed up Fareastone as well back many years ago as a backup phone, they wanted the $2900 deposit AND they freaked out that my arc was only 11months and 27 days long, they insisted it had to be a full year. Sent a complaint email to them and they immediately offered to set me up without deposit.

Changed my chunghua line to Taiwan Mobile because CHT charges too much, had already been in Taiwan for 5 years with perfect payment record, Taiwan Mobile insisted on a deposit of $2900 . After speaking to a manager they again waived it but they really did not want to.

So in total , expect to put up a deposit or a fight. Once set up all 3 carriers are good but interestingly as I know only Fareastone has special plans they only let locals get which sucks.

Taiwan star I have not been with but they are the worst as you can’t put a deposit, you need a local to cosign to set up.


You guys know the CHT deposit is refundable? Keep the receipt.


A few years back I went into a local ChungHwa shop and was all lined up until purchase when I was told they don’t sell contracts to foreigners. They said they let me get that far because they assumed I was married to a local who would provide her details for them.

I fired off a complaint letter to ChungHwa and they immediately responded it was categorically untrue and to try again in one of their larger shops (and provided a list). I did so the next day and had no problems. The clerk was actually confused when I asked if they sold to foreigners or not.

They did say if you were here on an ARC they would only let you enter a contract for the length of your ID though if you have an APRC you are the same as a local person from their view.


Senao, which are sort of ubiquitous outlets for Chunghwa Telecom, are not authorized to handle foreign customers. Only full Chunghwa offices can. Dunno why but Senao can’t provide even the simplest service to a foreigner.

In theory, APRC gives you the same rights as a citizen, except voting. That is on paper, of course.


I don’t think that is always the case. My wife went to them to get service on an iPhone with a swelling battery problem and they looked after her without an issue.


I mean anything official. Try paying without a receipt. They can’t access our records, for some weird reason.


Going to resurrect this thread.
I’m a former Taiwan mobile client. They are running a promotion for $599 a month unlimited 4G on a one year contract which is a great deal. The catch? It’s only available online, not in store.

Ok, sat down to apply online, a dialog box pops up and says that since I’m a foreigner I need to sign up in store. They are not offering that promotion in store however.

Sent an email to ask if they could help out, got a call tonight suggesting I get a local friend to put it in their name, as the deal is for Taiwanese only.

Chunghwa is offering $599 on a two year so I might just patronise them instead.


I went through something similar with Taiwan Mobile a few months ago. A coworker found the same $599 deal online and called them to ask if I could do it and they said it’s only for locals, but if I went into the shop, they could help me out with a similar deal. I went in and they signed me up for a $599 unlimited 4G deal, but for 2 years instead of the 1 year online-only deal.


The store offered that to me as well but I didn’t fancy signing a two year with all the break penalties that locals don’t need to sign especially since chunghwa offers the same 2 year to everyone over the counter. Even Fareastone has ‘foreigner only pricing’. I guess they think we are loaded and don’t deserve any deals.

Thanks for telling me about it though


I was already a Chungwa customer for 6 years, but the best they could offer me for unlimited data was over $1000/mth. The good deals are only for “new customers”, so I’ll probably jump ship again after this contract with Taiwan Mobile is up.

I never got the impression that it was some foreigner-only deal. In fact, the shop I went into probably has never seen another foreigner in it (at least not western foreigner, but probably Thai or Vietnamese since it’s near an industrial park). Pretty sure it was just a regular 2-year contract deal for new customers. They didn’t say anything about “break penalties”. Most contracts of any kind will have penalties for early termination, regardless if you are a local or not. That Chungwa deal will penalize you for breaking it early, too.