I have the exact opposite feeling: everywhere I go, especially in Summer, is so bloody cold that I keep a jumper in my backpack at all times. I remember in particular a hellish ride on a bus to Taichung where the temperature was close to 18C the whole time, while outside it was exactly double, 36C. We had the AC set to 19C for a while at the office and it was making people sick. Now it is at a more manageable 22, but I honestly don’t see how anyone could consider 25C a hot temperature, especially considering the AC is lowering the humidity. That’s what I set at home and I find it impossible to sweat, short of working out or staring at the pots while cooking.
Same goes for ice in drinks: while it is true that many restaurants will have warm water in the pitchers they offer for free, I often need to ask for “qu bing” (no ice cubes) or “xiao bing” (less ice) in drinks.
Before someone comes out and says “oh, but you’re Italian”, know I come from a mountain town in the north of Italy and it does get cold and snowy there, with mild Summers. It’s not like I am from Sicily or something.
If AC is much under about 25°-26° I get cold really quickly. I just turned my office AC on to 25° for 5 minutes and it cooled the place enough that a fan will be fine for the next few hours. I hate walking into department stores and the like here in summer, they are freezing.
It is the Law. If they set the AC colder, they get fined. Seriously. Which is why government offices are at a comfortable 30 degrees, like mine right now.
Department stores and supermarkets become a zoo on weekends because people flock to the cool air, not shopping. Seems to me the locals can’t take it, either. But electricity is expensive, they say, so take advantage of public spaces.
I was born and raised in a place where it hardly never falters from 22 degrees all year long, 26 is a heat wave. Ask me if after 15 years here I have become used to this increasingly boiling cauldron. Ask me, I dare you.
Like Icon said, government regulates AC temperatures here in Taipei and thermostat has to be set at 26C. However, I know govt can’t regulate everyone, lots of banks still keep their thermostat at ridiculously low temps.
One reason many Taiwanese drink warm/room temperature water is because of certain body conditions. “Ice cold beverages are bad for you” as my Chinese herbal doctor says. I don’t know if this is a myth or fact, but what I hear is cold beverages worsens some women’s periods. I obviously can’t attest to this, but just throwing it out there. Please don’t flame me
It really depends on the person when it comes to your cold-blooded assumption. I’ve seen a lot of hot girls on the streets that sweat up a storm and I also see the same kind of girls that don’t seem like they are phased by the heat.
I myself come from Northeastern US and we get pretty warm summers there (except it’s dry weather, not humid). I personally don’t really mind the humid heat since I’m more afraid of cold weather than hot. I know many of my fellow Americans that come here cannot take more than 5 mins outside in the humidity.
I personally don’t use the AC at home when I sleep since I sit all day in AC office. As lame as it sounds, I prefer some fresh air when I get home after a long days of work.
I rarely use AC during the day. I keep two fans blowing on my from each side. I am not comfortable, but it is manageable.
When I teach, I usually set the AC to 24. A lot of time the students put on their jackets, or once in a while complain. I really don’t care. When I teach I am extremely animated (teach adult buxiban) walking, talking, making all sorts of exaggerated gestures, so it is going to seem hotter to me than someone sitting in their chair. Occasionally I will make it a bit warmer, or just turn the fan to a lower setting (I like to keep it at medium, I will turn the fan down to low…but not change the temperature).
I hate the heat here. This is my 6th or 7th summer in Taiwan and I have yet to ever get used to it. If it wasn’t for the damn humidity, itd be OK.
Very true, it’s all about insulation in the building.
I sit next to the window in my office and I never stopped sweating if it’s 30C out, even if the AC is turned to 18-19C on HIGH fan too. It also doesn’t help that we’re on the top floor. However, my colleagues that are on the other side of the room are always cool.
Is it me or are Taiwanese more cold blooded (literally)?
Watch people on the street and you will see that there is a wide variety of temperature comfort zones. Some people will be in short sleeve T-shirts while others will be wearing a sweater or hoodie. Many use an umbrella or go out-of-their-way to walk in the shade to keep a few extra degrees cooler. Others are collecting sweat with a rag…usually foreigners!
How do others from the US cope or do you become acclimated over time and become cold blooded as well?
I have not acclimated and this is my 4th Taiwan summer. I avoid walking. I use a taxi and go from A/C to A/C. I have modified my clothing to lighter weight and colors that do not make it obvious that I am sweating. If you want a cool drink, look for a vending machine because Taiwan restaurants ration ice Or be self sufficient and take a thermos full of ice water from home. One Taiwan food that I love is shaved ice…it cools your core!
The key here is to understand that everyone’s physiology is different. I prefer warmer temps than just about everyone I know (Germanic/Scandanavian roots raised in MN) and get cold easy. Likewise in my classes of ten it’s very easy for some students to be cold all the time regardless of where they sit while other students are hot all of the time.
Taiwan Luthiers is also correct. Some AC units aren’t sufficient for a certain room and can’t ever satisfactorily cool a room while others turn a room into a frigid icebox (for me). For example our school has the same AC units on all of the floors (same size classroom) but the top floor is always hot regardless of where you set it.
Additionally there is a certain amount of conditioning that can help your body cope with temps. If you keep your apartment icy and then quickly get into your car with max AC before going to work (in AC) then you are likely to feel hot easily. I set my AC at 27 now and it doesn’t bother me at all. But I’m on one far end of the spectrum.
The intrigue !! My first thought was Lima for which the weather forecasts show the same temperature for days on end- but it’s not always 22 degrees. So I am now thinking somewhere in the tropics/ equatorial region with a stable year-round temperature- but at a high altitude. Bogota ?
No need to answer Icon, I am just thinking out loud !