For those watching the foreigner-guaranator drama in cell phone contracts, since I have a little too much free time this week, I’m calling up various and sundry cell phone companies and pushing up the food chain to find out what the REAL policy on foreigners is.
First victim: Hehsin.
(I was told by a person selling cell phones that Hehsin “absolutely would not issue a contract” to any foreigners, and that we must use pre-paid cards.)
Level 1: Asked whether I was an Overseas Chinese. Asked her what difference that would make. She had no answer. Told that a foreigner needs a passport, ARC, copy of the employer’s business license and some kind of letter stating how long the foreigner would be working for the company, but that with these docs a contract could be issued. Asked to speak to her supervisor.
Level 2: Speaking with Miss Liu, the deal changed somewhat. As far as she is concerned, a foreigner (not a “laborer” – she definitely has two completely separate categories in mind, which I don’t particularly like but I guess there’s not much I can do about it) needs only an ARC and his/her passport. BUT he/she should go to the real Hehsin store at #43 Kuanchien Rd. (near the train station in Taipei) and the ARC should have at least 6 months’ validity left.
No mention of guarantors was made, nor of employment verification.
Stay tuned for more annoyance calls to other major Taiwanese carriers. (This is more fun than speaking to innocent English students in Spanish!)