Credit Cards for Foreigners - General Discussion

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14 years next month and counting… “ke yi yong jiu hao le” “cha bu duo” “mei cha” “ok la!”


I used to do the same. On payday I took the money out completely in cash from the crappy bank my company made me use and walked next door and put it into my other bank where I am treated well.

Chunghua bank really sucks if they don’t trust foreigners so much that they won’t issue a company card with your company as a backer. On the other hand it’s good to use your own and get the points


They also require a guarantor unless you have “collaterals approved by our bank” whatever that might be.

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Any had experience applying for a ChinaTrust credit card? I want to apply there, but I’ve just started a new job. I have my tax return from last year, but I won’t have 3 months of payslips for 3 months. Another bank only wanted to know I had 20K in a bank, though they said they’d call my current job and maybe my previous job.

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They usually want to see 3 months pay continuous in an account but you can try to just submit the tax form and see if they accept it. That plus a nice fat balance helps too, and it might pass.

I recommend waiting for 3 months.

If you apply for a credit card and get turned down, but circumstances change and you apply again, will the first rejection be like a strike against you? I was turned down for a Costco+Cathay but shouldn’t have because I was between jobs, my passport and ARC were about to expire in around 4 months as well. I should, as discussed above, waited until I’d been working a few months at the new job, but I didn’t.

Technically I would say no because each application is supposed to be on it own merits so you should be OK to reapply once you are in a stronger financial position. If it was only rejected once you should be OK. Btw other banks can see you applied on your credit bureau for 3 months so don’t apply for more than 3 cards in 3 months or you will get rejected everywhere.

Now practically? I’ve applied for the Taiwan Business Bank card every year since I’ve been in Taiwan and since the first rejection, they have rejected me every year since then. I figure the agent sees the prior rejections and thinks ‘i dont want to approve this guy after everyone else has said no.’. So I do think it becomes objectively harder to reapply.

What, in Taiwan, is a credit bureau? Is there anything like a credit score in Taiwan?

Yup, it’s run by the JCIC , joint credit information centre, they have an office near the main station in Taipei if you want to get a copy of your credit bureau. It even has the score, assuming you already have prior credit in Taiwan. However Taiwanese banks aren’t hung up about credit scores like America, the bureau is mostly to tell them if you pay on time or have bad debt.

Update dec 2020:

Applied for and got the Costco Cathay CC with a limit of 100K. This makes things very convenient now. Not only can I do online ordering at Costco, it works in 100s of places that only accept cards from a local TW bank - 7-11, FamilyMart, PX mart, etc. plus I can load it into Apple wallet so I don’t need to carry it at all.

The best part is their app. Even though the English UI is non existent, it gives me a push notification for every transaction, even as low as $1. So I can make sure the card is not double swiped anywhere.

These 2 cards basically make life easier in Taiwan atleast for me. I wish Cathay had auto-pay to pull from another bank account, but that’s ok.


You can set that up at Cathay Bank. I use a BOT account. For some reason it takes 1.5 months, but after the second payment or so you don’t have to deal with it anymore.

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Ok I’ll ask them. Thanks

For the banks that ask for a guarantor, what happen is the relationship is broken or the person dies, or the you have had any contact with the person for a long time? Do they keep checking with the guarantor that he/she is still in the loop? How does it work?

If you don’t pay, they will pay.

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That doesn’t answer my question. What I am asking is if you keep your bills always paid and everything in check. Do they do, let’s say, a periodic check on the guarantor to see if the person still wants to be in that position? For example every 5-10yrs or so. Or is it a once time kind of thing?

I see people saying they have AmEx cards in Taiwan. I am still using my Singapore AmEx based card because when I tried to switch to Taiwan the AmEx office had closed…but that was 15 years ago.

Doesn’t the Cathay CC have a steep annual fee if you aren’t a Costco TW member?

Well I am a Costco member. So that fee is paid. Plus the card is a cash back card. So not bad.