Do I need a chop?

Is the personal stamp (“chop”) used nowadays? And would it be optional, as an alternative to signing a western name, or be even essential in some cases?
I’d like to get one made in any case - where should I go for that and how to create the characters to decently represent my identity?
How would it then be certified as a means of ID?

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  1. Have someone you know help you makeup a Chinese name.
  2. Go to a chop place (they are those places that have a sign that looks like a key and will ask you what design of the chop you want (just chose a cheap one. You don’t want to pay over a hundred for one).
  3. You can go to immigration and add your Chinese name to the record and you can get a new ARC. Probably will cost you money.
  4. Use your Chinese a long with your primary name going forward for everything.

I’ve been living in Taiwan for 18 years, and I’ve never needed nor used one.



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A chop shop!

Anyways, you can get away without often, but sometimes it’s needed. And don’t forget to bring it, don’t lose it. It’s very important to use the same chop for some things, like banks, you can not alternate chops with different ‘character’ styles. It’s good to have one.

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Someone must have backed you at some point. The first time you rented your place did you personally sign every part of the contract? Nobody else you were involved with stamped any part of it?

You’ll need it if you want to open an account at Yuanta Securities. Other than that probably not.

Thanks for the pointers :+1:

Good for opening bank accounts in my opinion. If you have a messy signature, you can run into some bank staff who think they are Sherlock Holmes with English signatures. Chop takes all the pain away, you just stamp your way to glory. Just don’t lose the focker.


AFAIK, there’s no official certification. If you use one to open a bank account, just make sure to use the same one always with that bank. I have no idea what happens if you lose it.

I’ve been here 12 years and only once was I told the chop was required, which was when transferring scooter ownership. It might be different now.


hmmm… how about using a fingerprint as a chop? …can’t lose it!

I believe in this scenario one engages the services of Jason Statham to retrieve it.

Bank employee to Adogah … please sign here.
Please sign again… it’s different
Please sign again… it’s different
Sir, you need to sign this way… last name, middle name, first name like your passport.
Sir… you put first name last name, please sign again
It doesn’t look similar, sign again

You leave the bank finally with about 6 signature attempts on the form with multiple corrections and initials everywhere.

Chop and done


I lost one. You get a new one but banks charge a fee for registering the new one, usually $50NT. Post office for letters and other places generally don’t check nor is it registered anywhere

To the op you can get a cheap one for $100 nt for those rare times it’s needed.


I just thought of another use, receiving registered mail. Unless you want to be a foreigner for life that is: “Passport and ARC please”.

get one. they’re cheap and you might need it. they are useful for people doing business on your behalf. ex. getting a scooter transferred to your name without being there.

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Don’t sell yourself short with just a chop. You need at least a Porterhouse steak.


Rare inside and fast-charred outside, please😋
Browsing around Tamsui I found a nice piece of ebony ready to inscribe, now I need to work out a sinicized (?) version of my name. Anyone know of a convenient website/list to find ideas for that?

When I bought a motor scooter back in the day, they demanded I use a chop (with my English name on it). Was quite difficult to carve like 20 letters on one chop. I also had to use one when buying an appartment and I think when banking at the post office (with Chinese name on it). For the Chinese chop, I think you have to have that Chinese name officially registered, showing on your ARC.

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