Is the Gold Card experiment a flop?

Yeah but they won’t and no country will. And they weren’t talking about some careful suggestions regarding improving documentation, but consulting on technology across government departments.


Honestly I think the government should look at all suggestions, assuming these people have a background in what they are proposing.
But I get they don’t have time to chat all day with random people so set up a suggestion box that gets triaged based on actual practical advice I’d say.

Taiwan is not developed enough like say USA or Australia where they don’t need to listen to advice

Here’s some numbers to add to the discussion.

If you apply for a Gold Card outside Taiwan, you probably won’t have an address in Taiwan and therefore your address field on your GC is blank.

Which means: No bank account and unable to buy a car.

So you stay in an Airbnb for a two weeks. A room in a shared apartment in a city will probably cost you something like NT$1000 a day.

Renting a car will cost you about NT$2000-3000 a day.

You find an apartment. Landlord wants two months deposit plus anything from one to three months’ rent up-front. Say the apartment is a decent one, so the rent is NT$30,000 per month. Conservatively you should assume you will have to pay 5 months total rent, which is NT$150,000. Estate agent fees another NT$15,000

After you find the apartment and sign the contract, you send it to NIA who can take up to two weeks processing to issue you a new GC. So only after the one month mark can you apply for a new bank account.

Let’s say the burn rate for the rental car and Airbnb is NT$3000 a day, which after one month that’s NT$90,000.

Include food, fuel, parking and other expenses, and you’re probably talking about another NT$30,000 for the month. As a newcomer, everything is more expensive because you’d park in a paid-for lot even when there is free parking next to it because you don’t know better.

Altogether you’re talking about NT$300,000 just to uproot and relocate. When you buy a WW2-era second hand car, you’re adding another NT$150,000 to it.

Part of the costs are inevitable in any system but having banks and car registration insist on an address incurs major costs.

The Taiwanese government should either get the bureaucracies in both areas streamlined for GC holders, or give a NT$500,000 one-off grant for new GC holders who enter the country.

Taiwans gdp per capita is about to surpass Japan. It has some of the most valuable companies in the world and one of the highest educated populaces

A lot of governments could and should take advice from outside, but they don’t, they don’t take it from their own private sectors

US still uses checks and guns are legal. Most of the world would think that is backward shit. Try as a Norwegian or another country with higher standards of living offer to lecture the US government

You would have to be arrogant as shit to suggest it

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Why do you need a car?

You have basically just outlined the basic costs of moving anywhere, which most of us here have dealt with numerous times



You can have a 100ntd 7-11 voucher


You can have high GDP and high education but still lack common sense in policy making. They are not mutually exclusive

Lack of common sense is like the most classic expat whine going.

Taiwanese always tell me that the U.S., Australia or wherever they came back from, lacks common sense or efficiency

People aren’t going to do things your way. Logic is different and as a foreigner you are going to have to deal with loads of illogical annoying stuff that a local wouldn’t. It’s just part of the living abroad experience


Obviously foreigners are never going to give up having some issues as an expat or foreigner. but most countries strive to work on efficiencies over time. Taiwan needs to keep moving in that direction and not accept mediocracy because Chabuduo.
Again Taiwanese ‘efficiency’ vs common sense are not exclusive either.

The Taiwanese DMV was very ‘efficient’ in cancelling my license plate when I went on vacation and they thought I wasn’t coming back. They lacked common sense until I had to push the issue higher and a manager had to get involved and then they realized it was their error. Oops. No apologies either.

I heard similar complaints from Taiwanese in the US.

Most immigration stuff here is pretty breezy compared to other places.


I agree it is. Because immigrants aren’t beating down the doors to come here like the USA. I can see why the USA immigration would be backlogged. Heck, they have to process the thousands a day walking across.

As others have pointed out, public transport outside of Taipei is hit and miss. Add to that being a foreigner, not speaking the language, not being able to read signs and so on - at least with a car you can get from A to B, with a reliable ETA.

And most people you meet on the streets or in shops do not speak English.

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Then live in Taipei and learn some simple Chinese or do whatever everyone else does and work out some coping strategies


You seem to have based 80% of this on being an American wanting to drive everywhere? Someone moving here absolutely doesn’t need to rent or buy a car as a first priority.

Lol. Yeah, right. They won’t even give us a NT$6000 tax rebate or NT$5000 in stimulus vouchers.


The government are not going to give an expat relocation package to a freelancer


And there’s an opportunity cost as well. A GC immigrant who doesn’t speak Chinese will probably spend the first month with bureaucracy as mentioned previously (finding a place to rent, updating the GC address, buying a car, opening bank/phone/internet/health insurance accounts). Next few months finding a job and/or learning Chinese.

So if you’re making say US$15k per month in your previous country as an expert, you would quite easily lose half a years salary on the relocation.

Yeah, the purpose is to bring people that can show up and give, not show up and take


I’m not sure if you are being serious at this point or if this is satire

Most foreigners here came to Asia with nothing more than a sense of adventure and a chance to see something different. Then we worked to establish ourselves


I had a certain standard of living in my previous country. It is not unreasonable to expect the same in my new country.

FYI I paid for everything out of my own pocket.

I enumerated the cost of being a new immigrant. Not a blue collar worker but a highly skilled one who had a previously commensurate standard of living and expects to live at a similar level.

Objectively the GC is an open door to come relocate to Taiwan. As it stands, ALL the cost and risk is placed on the would-be immigrant.

Relocation packages are not unheard of, either in industry or for immigrants to some countries.

Absolutely all of this is just routine stuff about moving to another country, and it needs to be considered when thinking about doing that (by the person, not the government). If someone can’t handle this basic stuff, they perhaps aren’t suited to living abroad, or might be better off moving to a country where they already speak the language.

Taiwan is a fairly easy place to get by, and I say that while speaking essentially no Chinese. It’s maybe like a 5 or 6 out of 10 in terms of difficulty.

A large proportion of the regular ARC holders here on Forumosa (I mean teachers, other professionals, etc.) likely came to Taiwan under similar circumstances as you’re complaining about - they flew here, got a job, made a life. As I wrote above, I’m not sure why some proportion of gold card holders seem to have such a hard time of it. Should the Taiwanese government also be providing a chaperone or personal butler to each arriving gold card holder?

As a highly skilled professional, didn’t you do any research before flying here? That is, see what you might be able to expect working in Taiwan, what the opportunities were, how your skills were valued?

I’d normally expect a relocation package to come from the employer. Perhaps that’s something to ask potential employers here. It might be fun for the comedy value anyway.