Land Bank Cirrus and Maestro cards NOT for foreigners!

I just had a horrible weekend in H.K and China. I left Friday night and got back here Sunday night. When I arrived I went to an ATM as I always do and tried to get cash, however my new bank card from ‘LAND BANK’ didn’t work.
Got the train ticket on my VISA card, then arriving late at night in H.K. I tried another 10 ATM’s, without luck. Same in China!

I have been in H.K and China so many times with my FuBon and OverseasChinese Bank ATM cards without any hassle.
This Monday I called my bank ask what was wrong with my card, it took them two days to find out that I was a foreigner (with APRC) so they had disabled by default the possibility for me to use my ATM card abroad!
They sent me the contract I signed (in Chinese) and clause 26 states that foreigners (according to Taiwan law) cannot use Cirrus cards abroad!

  1. This contract is stupid, since the only clause that applies to foreigners was written in Chinese!
  2. Foreigners with ARC or APRC should not be treated as tourists, which also can open bank accounts here.
  3. Cirrus is a CASH card, not a credit card, so why apply such a rule?

I am furious :fume: on the attitude from ‘LAND BANK’ and their racist treatment. I had a horrible trip and since it was a weekend there was no way but to use VISA (which is hard to use in China). I wasted a lot of time and energy on this matter. I am seeking penalty from them.

And I urge ANYONE to cancel their ‘LAND BANK’ accounts and move to any other ‘open minded’ bank!

It’s not just Land Bank. My Chinatrust card wouldn’t let me withdraw in Thailand, though my Chang Hwa one did.

ChinaTrust tell me my Cirrus card will work abroad as long as my ARC is valid. Not that I’m going to Trust them on that…

That’s just bullshit. Go back, speak to the manager, and tell them you’re going to open an account with Hua Nan, who don’t discriminate against foreigners.

I opened an account at Hua Nan early this year and they asked me if I wanted to use the card overseas or not. I said yes of course. I tried it in March and it worked.


You guys just made me mad, at Land Bank, I’ll be going there real soon to close the account if they don’t get their act together.

Was in HK and Beijing in September. Was able to use both my Cirrus ATM card in HK and my Visa in HK and Beijing. My cards are from Chang Hua Commercial Bank.

A Taiwanese bureaucrat will always tell you the arbitrary decision he just made to your detriment was “required by the law”. Always ask for a copy of the law “to take to my solicitor”. For added effect point out that if the law does not say whatever it is, you will be requiring an explanation of why the person was lying to you, and is he prepared to explain himself in front of a jusge.

“Now, let me ask you again, are you sure the law says that…?”

I remember using my Chang Hua bank card in a HongKong Bank ATM in HK in 1997, and then again in Shanghai in Feb 1998, No probs. I had no ARC at the time. But I wouldn’t ever want to rely on the promise of a Taiwanese bank. Trust. As far as. Throw.

I wonder if these sort of banking practices are due in part to the amount of government ownership. Bank of Taiwan, Land Bank are I’m pretty sure almost wholly government owned. The mid-range ones like CHB, Hua Nan are half and half and then you get the Fubon bank which is almost wholly privatized. Fubon bank just bought out TaipeiBank so it’s now one of the largest in all of Taiwan.

Personally, CHB has been good to me. But, in the future, I’d go with private banks like Fubon.

TaiHsin Bank also used to have this problem.

I never pursued it, because I had an account at Citibank, but it was annoying since my salary was paid into Taihsin


Taipei Bank asked me specifically when I opened my account, “Do you want a bank card you can use overseas or one you can’t?”