Knife size (legal)

What is the legal size for a knife to carry in Taiwan?

I mean… for example in UK it is legal to go around with a Swiss Army Knife in your pocket, but illegal for a larger knife (say a scuba knife).

Are there any rules for the size (especially length) of knives in Taiwan?

Or is the police going to arrest you, no matter what you have in your pocket (even a 1 inch flick knife for cutting paper)?

I am not using it for any bad thing… just for cutting up fruit and using the other combo tools in the knife.

I saw an old guy crossing Tun-Hwa and Ba-De today holding 4-5 inch blade (no sheath). No one even seemed to notice.

I usually carry a 17"-bladed watermelon knife, but its ALWAYS kept in a scabbard strapped to my motorbike. No problems so far.

Seriously, though, I once asked the salesman in a cutlers about legal knives (he had some of those fancy 8" damascus steel stilettos and huge foot-long bowie knives) and he said they’re all legal. Then again, he was also selling powerful crossbows, blowpipes, etc., and I’m pretty sure they’re not legal, so go figure.

I expect it depends where you are – I’ve gone through police checkpoints while going hiking, carrying a machete that looks like a sword, with no problems. I’d imagine the cops wouldn’t like it much if they found me carrying it around in Dinghao, though.

My buddy and I were pulled over in Tainan in '97 for running a red light (it wasn’t really red; it was a T-intersection…! ) Anyways, both of us had Chinese broadswords strapped to our back as we had just finished a Kung-fu class.
The conversation went like this:
Policeman: You can’t carry these around.
Me: We are going home from our Kung-fu school, where we practice the sword.
Policeman: Then you have to leave it at the school.
Me: But we practice often at home.
Policeman: Then you have to leave it at home.
Me: But we have to study it at school…

His partner found it amusing, as he could tell we weren’t evil people hacking up innocent children and told him to just forget it. So we were let go. Didn’t even get a ticket for the red light…

I was thinking that his question was not about whether it’s allowed to have whatever size of knife in Taiwan, but whether he would have problems with the customs upon arrival.

Not if you handcarry it …

I wasn’t allowed to bring a butterfly knife on the flight to Green Island. I had to check it seperately. They confiscated my police baton, though.

So it sounds like balisongs / butterfly knives are okay in Taiwan?

I wouldn’t bet on it. Remember, this post is from almost 14 years ago!

Looks like it survived going through customs on a boat.

Speaking of knives, does anyone know the English term for a 西瓜刀? Is it really ‘watermelon knife’? When I search for this on the Internet I get pictures of knives with a fancy coloured blade.