End of 180 days, can't do visa run or change to work visa due to covid. Options?

My visa is fast approaching the 180 days limit, but I’m unable to do a visa run or change to a work visa I can get from a cram school due to the borders being closed and the need to leave and then reenter the country. Does anyone have any advice or solutions regarding this? Thanks

I analyzed your situation carefully. Basically your two options are either to overstay and bear the consequences (possible fines and entry bans) or to leave and reenter when the borders are reopened.

I’m in similar situation, not work visa.
Luckily mt 180 day is end of August so I’m hoping developments have changed for the better by then.
I will leave at designated date, fine ok but re entry ban not.
I think going to be a lot of us sitting around in country we don’t want to be waiting for Visa entry to resume how it was.
Student, work Visa I feel will but not tourist ones.

Are there not some work or student visas you can change to without leaving the country?

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Same boat here. they have said they are discussing this. I certainly hope so, i’m cool with going home but going back to virus land when i have avoided it thus far is a bit lame.

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Have you gone to the immigration centre to ask about your options?


Going tomorrow. Just getting some insight first from the Formosans.

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Do you have a visa visa or the visa-free entry?

@Vivalakaohsiung it’d be easier to answer if you are more specific about your status and situation and nationality.

That’s not a thing. It’s the MOFA that gives visas, but I assume you mean getting a visa after getting a job at a cram school. It is possible to get a visa within Taiwan. I’ve done this several times after entering visa free. If you have a proper visa already, I’m not sure but it’s worth a try. I’d talk to MOFA first, immigration might can help but MOFA is the department that handles the first part of what I’m going to explain.
You would need to get a job and get a work permit. You may not have time to do that as it takes a few days and you need a health check first. After getting a work permit, you would take that to the MOFA office, and they give you a visitors visa. (It sounds strange, but that’s what you need.) Then you go to immigration and apply for an ARC. When you get it, the visa is canceled.
However, if you don’t have time for that, you can still sign a contract, do a health check, apply for a work permit, then fly to the closest safest country that has flights both ways. Its usually Hong Kong or Japan, but Japan just now lifted the state of emergency and I’d really not want to be in Hong Kong now. Palau maybe? No cases there last time I checked. There’s an actual embassy there, but make sure it’s open. If you have a work permit, you should be able to get a visitor’s visa and come back. Come to think of it, a letter from a school saying they will give you a work permit may be enough, it used to be, but an actual work permit would be better. Not all foreigners are banned from entering Taiwan. Coming to work (for a job you already have) is a reason for entering. You will need to stay in quarantine for 2 weeks. Best if you have your own place or you’ll be in a hotel for 2 weeks.
And double check whatever you plan to do because things change and you don’t want to trust some random person on a website.


you can change to work visa without leaving for most cases, if you can collect documents before the last day of your stay permit. Study visa no.

If you have about 45 days left and have a legit business or concrete company idea, you can apply for an entrepreneur visa. Unless you can show some success of the business (VC investment, won competition etc) you’ll have to join a program like Taipei Futureward (NT1,000-2,000 per month). I went that way because I had been wanting to incorporate my media company in Taiwan for quite some time.

Go legal otherwise accept accountability!

What happens to people overstaying? They are actively searched for by the authorities (e.g. via phone tracing etc.) or they are just “caught” when they leave the country or turn themselves in voluntarily and then pay their fine?


They don’t search for them. There are thousands of them. Usually when someone is involved with the police or they turn themselves in, do the police find out…
The Amnesty end date looks a bit pointless if you cannot leave because of travel restrictions. They should extend it.

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Usually that, with the fines getting bigger the longer you wait and possible criminal prosecution if it’s too long. I once knew of a guy who overstayed 7 years.

What did immigration say?

When I asked about this originally (before he automatic extensions were given), the nia recommended I just overstay for less than 91 days (very important) as it’s just an 8000nt fine and no visa exempt usage for a year.

91 days or more and you’re looking at a year+ total entry ban.

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What punishment did the guy get for overstaying seven years?

That’s really bad advice you got.

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