New regulation when applying for a credit card (foreigners)

I just tried to apply for a CC from HSCB and was told by the customer service representative that there is a new government rule in place since today that says your ARC must be valid for at least one year. Can anyone confirm that this is correct?

They might be right, but they might be bluffing. Ask to see the source.

Don’t Banks and the like just say “because we say so”?

There was a lot of discussion about this a while back, mostly in this thread. As that discussion ran to 12 pages we might as well have a new one instead of merging them.

The rule is not new. It’s a central bank regulation that has been unenforced, but now they’re paying attention to it. Elias provided this link to it. you have to scroll down a few pages to the area where there’s some highlighted bits in yellow.

You need a year’s validity on your ARC, although it’s not clear whether it must be a year until it’s due for renewal, to get a credit card.

Worse, credit cards and ATM cards which work overseas must be limited in validity to the period of your ARC. This means that, for instance, you can’t easily access any income you may have in Taiwan if you happen to be living elsewhere for a while.

You can’t continue to do editing or recruiting work for your old boss and just ask him/her to put the money in your a/c for you to draw when you need it. You can’t easily spend any income from investments in Taiwan. You can’t work for a year, leave your savings, and go travelling with the intention of coming back to a new job in a few months. You have to pay for wire transfers or buy traveller’s cheques.

This is the sort of thing I and others have been banging on about for ages, and I’m glad that Rascal has finally understood the issue. Foreigners are discriminated against in Taiwan, and there’s no good reason for it. Welcome to the real world.

I had a Citibank account for awhile, but canceled it because of the bullshit they had. They wanted foreigners to bring there ARC every year to show them that it has been renewed and has not expired. They sent me a notice that if I didn’t come in within 30 days that my account would be deactivated. Never had to do that for First Bank, and I have had an account there for 5 years now. Isn’t Citibank supposed to be international? Why do they treat international clients so poorly?

Because they’re obeying the stupid law.


That is weird as I used my Chiao Tung savings account for 6 months after I had left Taiwan… in HK, Singapore, Australia. As long as your card has the ‘plus’ symbol you can use it anywhere in the world. You have to have it activated however and this procedure is the same for any savings account from any bank in the world.

It seems that some banks pay more attention to the rule than others, but that it is being more strictly enforced recently. As ever, banking is at the whim of the person you deal with, and what they tell the computer about you.

Thanks for the information / clarification about the government rule, Loretta.

KawasakiRider, do you know if First Bank offers multi-currency accounts?

I have seen similar statements in other threads, maybe related to applying for drivers licenses. At this moment, I’m not disagreeing, I’m simply trying to understand. Either the rule makes some sort of sense or it is nonsense in terms of whether compliance is even possible. Namely, how can anyone have an ARC that is valid for a year? The day after you get it, it is no longer valid for one year. Are they really saying that you need to run around, on the very day that you get your ARC renewed, and apply for every other type of card needed (credit card, drivers license, etc)?

Something seems to be missing in this “one year ARC” rule.

By applying for and being granted an ARC that is valid for more than one year. My initial ARC for example was valid for nearly 2 years, in accordance with the duration of my employment contract at the time.

If your ARC is valid for one year only that seems to be the only way, based on the law. And that’s why the regulation is pretty stupid.


Thanks. Didn’t even know there were conditions under which ARCs would be granted for longer than a year, but longer contracts could do that I guess.

I don’t know, but would wager that the vast majority of contracts and ARCs in Taiwan are the 1-year type. If so, that would make the need for change in these laws/rules even greater.


I’m not really sure Rascal. Their English website sucks, but from all the international branches they have around the world, I figure they would. … atoid=-825

It is true that your ARC must be valid for at least one year if you apply for a main/original credit card (=正卡). However if you only apply for a secondary credit card (=副卡), it will not depend on the duration of your ARC.

In order to get a secondary card there has to be a primary card.

The rule exists because someone at the Central Bank had his daughter knocked up by a foreigner. Same as the driving licence rule which also serves no purpose whatsoever.

As everyone seems to have a Taiwanese girlfriend/spouse, they can have the primary card and you have the secondary… Or if you are in Taipei by yourself… just find you a girl/boyfriend.

You’re missing the point.

Why should I be considered for credit on someone else’s credit record?

I live here. I pay my taxes here. I pay my bills. I have a good job, and have been with one employer for two years. Why does being a foreigner make me a bad risk?

Any, FYI, my girlfriend is American. Please don’t make generalisations. It is ill-informed attitudes about foreigners that lead to unfair treatment.

And some of us are not so shallow as to dupe some poor girl/boy into thinking that we love them when all we want is a credit card, and maybe a matress.

Personally, I’ve no desire to find a S.O, and even if I did find one, I have enough integraty (pride?) to not ask them to sign surity on my behalf.

[quote=“mythrandore”]And some of us are not so shallow as to dupe some poor girl/boy into thinking that we love them when all we want is a credit card, and maybe a matress.

Personally, I’ve no desire to find a S.O, and even if I did find one, I have enough integraty (pride?) to not ask them to sign surity on my behalf.[/quote]

Exactly!! Why should I have a Taiwanese signing on my behalf as my guarantor? Financial freedom/security/issues are very personal and no way in hell do I want someone else to be a determining factor of whether or not I am a credit risk or not. This really annoys me to the yazoo! I finally got a credit card from Amex, would have prefered a Visa/Mastercard but unfortunately no bank was willing to give it to me without making me jump through loops like a monkey in a freak show. Just not worth the hassle! :noway:

AmEx may not be as good as visa, but it’s still a card. how did you get it?