Paid Vacations

Are paid vacations not the norm in Taiwan?

You get seven days paid a year after you’ve completed your first year. After that you get an additional day per year up to (I think) 15 days.

That may be the law, but the reality is in the majority of McDonalds style bushiban jobs you won’t be able to get the boss to pay you for vacation.

Oh well, I dunno about teaching gigs. Its what I’ve always had, though.

You won’t get paid vacation for the majority of teaching jobs like you do in Korea, OP. You will have to negotiate with your boss to take unpaid leave.

If you have a teaching qualification or are post grad educated you can work in the public sector or HE, where you get long paid vacations. There are also a few better quality teaching jobs in places like the British Council which offer paid vacation, but these are very competitive jobs to get.

I used to work for a Kindy that gave us 1 week paid vacation, regardless of tenure, but they weren’t the norm. All Cram schools are closed for Chinese New Year (8 to 10 days) annually and that is when they expect teachers to take holiday (when the school isn’t open anyway) and varies from Buxiban owner to owner whether they pay for it or not. If you ask for a non-Chinese New Year time-frame vacation, you’ll be lucky if the owner doesn’t refuse or give you a rash of shit, let alone pay for it. Many will say “OK, but you must find your own sub and if he/she is unreliable or unsuitable, you leave at your own peril.” Public schools generally have a paid vacation program. Many public schools are closed for summer holiday and it’s paid, too. Buxibans (cram schools) don’t offer the perks that public schools do, in Taiwan, although you need a teaching certificate from your home state/province to teach in public schools here. Basically, (of course there are exceptions here and there) Taiwanese schools just don’t have the perks that westerners enjoy and expect back in their own countries. Housing subsidies, paid vacations, paid sick days, 401-K plan, etc…forget it in Taiwan. That is the reason most of my fellow Americans choose not to teach here. They expect labor perks. Bascially, you show up and get paid. You don’t show up, you don’t get paid. If you want perks, ensure you’re state certified when you come from your native country to Taiwan and get a public school job.
There are several good reasons to come to Taiwan to teach. The money is better here than many asian countries. Great location (a few hours from any asian holiday spot), moderate cost of living. Just don’t come here expecting work benefits and perks.

I dont even get paid, let alone have vacations. You guys are so lucky.

From what I saw on the contract that was sent to me, I hope not all contracts are like that in Taiwan.
Fucking ridiculous. And I’m not just talking about vacation. In fact, that’s minor compared to other clauses. You’d have to be a fool to sign that one.

I’d like to post that contract on this site and see what everyone has to say…

Why don’t you?

Why don’t you?[/quote]

I will, but where? Is there a sticky, or should I just start a thread? This one made me laugh. And it made me a little cranky, too.

Why don’t you?[/quote]

I will, but where? Is there a sticky, or should I just start a thread? This one made me laugh. And it made me a little cranky, too.[/quote]

Why not post it here?

The following conditions are agreed between __________________________
(hereinafter known as TEACHER) and XXX
TEACHER, has agreed to FULL-TIME EMPLOYMENT at XXX during the effective period of this contract:_______________(Date) to _____________(ending date)
A: FULL-TIME EMPLOYMENT is defined as teaching classes or tutorials ONLY at XXX or an XXX designated venue for hourly wages agreed upon by XXX and TEACHER.
B: WAGES: TEACHER will receive a minimum of (
) teaching hours per week and will be paid($NT ) per group class hour (four students or more) and ($NT ) for tutorials (three students or less), before taxes beginning from the starting date of this contract, payable on the seventh day of the following month.

  1. If XXX cannot provide ( ) hours and it does NOT relate to TEACHER’S performance or refusal to teach certain classes, situation (a) or (b) below may occur:
    a. a part-time contract MAY be negotiated if TEACHER and XXX agree to do so, and this contract will become void.
    b. TEACHER has the right to break this contract without penalty except for what is owed to XXX or paid for by XXX listed in section 9 part A. One month notice must be given.
  2. If XXX cannot provide ( ) teaching hours to TEACHER and it IS determined to relate to TEACHER performance, a part-time contract MAY be negotiated if TEACHER and XXX agree to do so. See Section 1 part G “LOSS OF TEACHING HOURS.”
    D: As XXX is the sponsor of the official work permit, the full-time TEACHER is expected to be flexible with receiving the schedule of classes set forth by the Director of Curriculum during the hours of operation of XXX. XXX will take into consideration the stated preference of schedules Monday through Friday, Tuesday through Saturday, or a six-day schedule (Monday through Saturday).
    E: A full-time TEACHER must clock in at XXX 30 minutes before the first scheduled class in a day if that first class is the ONLY class of the day; and 60 minutes before their first scheduled class if there is more than one class scheduled in that day.
    F: During public or private school monthly test times, or due to acts of nature, XXX classes MAY be cancelled and made up at later dates. If it is decided that there must be a make-up class, TEACHERS are obligated to teach the make-up class according to XXX’ scheduling. The government designated holidays are NOT made up and TEACHER WILL NOT be PAID for said official government designated holidays.
    G: LOSS OF TEACHING HOURS: XXX reserves the right to cancel, remove, or withhold classes for ANY reason. The reasons MAY include, but are NOT limited to: continued negative feedback from students or parents expressed to TEACHER without improvement, speaking a language other than English in the class, improper dress code, repeated displays of anger toward students, inability to control classes, teaching inappropriate materials, teaching incorrect lessons, not preparing, allowing students to begin late or leave early, or lack of concern for the improvement of students.
    A: GROUP TEACHING HOURS are defined as: any hours of group class instruction (four or more students) assigned to the teacher by XXX and are calculated on a weekly basis. This may include off-site venues.
    B: Class size in GROUP CLASSES may INCREASE if space is available. Students who are interested in joining the class may audit ONE time before deciding to join a class. TEACHER is required to fill out an audit form stating whether or not the class is an appropriate level for the auditing student. Audit forms should be given to a full-time staff secretary.
    C: Class size may DECREASE over time, and XXX will investigate the cause. If the number of students decreases significantly or falls below six students, the group class MAY be cancelled or TEACHER may be changed.
    D: Due to students’ continually changing schedules, TEACHER’s schedules may change frequently. The Director of Curriculum or staff members will inform TEACHER of these changes and TEACHER is expected to be flexible with regard to these changes. TEACHERS are responsible to follow their latest up-dated schedule.
    E: Directors, staff persons, faculty, or teaching assistants (TAs) may enter GROUP CLASSES or TUTORIALS at any time to observe classes. Teachers may or may not be informed before the class. Parents are NOT permitted to enter, but MAY stand outside the classroom. Some classes MAY have a scheduled “open-house” which DOES permit parents to enter classes. In this case, TEACHER shall be informed beforehand.
    F: Class load may vary from week to week. Classes may include GROUP classes and/or TUTORIALS (three students or less).
    G: If TUTORIAL students cancel classes, and are willing to make them up, TEACHER is obligated to make up the class according to the Director of Curriculum’s scheduling of such a make-up class if the make-up class falls within XXX’s normal hours of operation. If a tutorial student desires a make-up a class before or after normal hours of operation, TEACHER will be asked if he/she can and wants to teach the class or not.
    Section 4: OFFICE HOURS:
    A: See Section 1, FULL-TIME EMPLOYMENT part E for length of office hours. OFFICE HOURS are expected and included in the payment for class hours taught. There is NO extra pay for preparation time or OFFICE HOURS.
    B: Continual lateness for OFFICE HOURS may result in loss of teaching hours. If teacher does not arrive for office hours at a half hour before the first scheduled class, LLS has the right to find another teacher to teach the class.
    C: TEACHER is expected to complete compositions and report cards for their scheduled classes. This work should be completed at XXX (not taken off site) as part of the OFFICE Hours that are required for each class. Not being able to finish compositions or report cards, will affect the number of teaching hours TEACHER receives, and may constitute JUST CAUSE in Section 10 ©.
    D: Other teaching assignments such as summer and winter camps or daycare may differ from the above OFFICE HOURS schedule and times must be agreed upon by XXX and TEACHER.
    E: OFFICE HOURS must be filled in the following ways:
  3. correcting compositions, writing report cards
  4. planning lessons
  5. attending teacher’s meetings

F: If a TEACHER must leave OFFICE HOURS for any reason, a director or head staff person must be first informed. XXX must know the whereabouts of TEACHER during OFFICE HOURS in order to impart necessary information.

G: Leaving OFFICE HOURS shall not exceed 10 minutes. Meals and snacks should be eaten at XXX if during OFFICE hours.

A: From time to time, teachers MAY have additional opportunities to earn hourly wages
agreed upon by XXX and TEACHER beyond their base salary and overtime option. This may
include summer or winter day-camps.

B: Wages for SPECIAL WORK AGREEMENTS depend on the venue and TEACHER has the right
to refuse these extra hours.


A. The time lapsed from the first class observation at XXX and
practice teaching, to the official government approval of a legal WORK VISA is designated

B. During the TRAINING PERIOD, TEACHER is expected to: first observe XXX classes for up
to three class days, begin teaching half-hour sections of lessons with supervision, then
teach tutorials or full classes with supervision only when TEACHER is ready and willing
to do so, at the hourly pay of NT$550 per TEACHING HOUR (before taxes) payable after all
materials for the work visa have been submitted.

C. When TEACHER obtains a work visa, TRAINING PERIOD is concluded.

D. If TEACHER has previous teaching experience, TRAINING PERIOD may be shortened as long
as TEACHER possesses an official work permit.
A: From the start of the TRAINING PERIOD until the beginning of the third month, TEACHER shall remain in probation period.
B: Classes may be monitored or visited to insure quality instruction is given and procedures are followed.
C: The probation period for this contract is from __________________ to _.
D: If XXX is not satisfied with TEACHER’s performance, teaching hours may be withheld.
E: There is no PROBATION PERIOD for teachers who have extended beyond a one-year contract.
F. TEACHER shall not request unpaid days off during the probation period unless due to illness.
Section 8: CONDITIONS:
A. FEES: TEACHER is responsible to pay all of the fees to apply for a work visa, including: a physical, pictures, diploma translation (if applicable), labor office fee, changing visa status, and Alien Resident Visa card processing. These costs fluctuate from year to year. XXX has explained these fees to me:
1. XXX shall be entitled to withhold from amounts payable to TEACHER, any taxes, fees or charges which it is from time to time required by the government in Taiwan to withhold or any money owed to XXX if teacher resides in the XXX teachers’ apartment.
2. XXX shall be entitled to rely upon the opinion of its legal counsel with regard to any question concerning the amount or requirement of any such withholding.
3. It is TEACHER’S sole responsibility to file income tax, claim any rebate or refund from Taiwan’s tax authority. If requested by TEACHER, XXX can assist. Personal income tax for the previous year is filed every May.
4. According to Taiwan’s tax law, TEACHER will be taxed at 20% for the first 183 days in Taiwan of every tax year, and 6%-13% thereafter depending on average monthly earnings. After 183 days TEACHER is eligible for a rebate from the government tax authority for this first 183 days recalculated at 6%-13% depending on the average monthly earnings of TEACHER within a tax year beginning January 1. This rebate of the difference between 20% and the reassessed tax rate can be received by TEACHER from the tax authority after their assessment at the end of a tax year. If a refund is signed over to XXX, TEACHER may receive the amount of the rebate at the end of this one-year contact.
C. OFFICIAL HOLIDAYS: TEACHERS will receive days off for Chinese New Year vacation and other government designated holidays. Chinese New Year’s vacation and other holidays are unpaid for TEACHER.

  1. After obtaining a work visa, TEACHER shall join the National Labor Insurance Policy (JIAN BAO). TEACHER is obligated to pay the sum each month from his/her wages. XXX can provide TEACHER with the official health insurance chart listing appropriate payment, according to TEACHER’s average monthly wages.
  2. The policy only covers medical expenses incurred through illness and accident.
  3. It is expected that TEACHER has traveler’s insurance for the TRAINING PERIOD. XXX shall not be held responsible or pay costs for any injury or sickness during the TRAINING PERIOD or thereafter.
  4. XXX provides NO “workman’s compensation” for illness or injury unless XXX is found to be negligent.
  5. Preventive dental care is covered by National Insurance. Cosmetic dental care is NOT covered. Preventive dental care will be covered only if done at a JIAN BAO affiliated office.
  6. MEDICAL COVERAGE is effective only while TEACHER is in Taiwan with an appropriate resident/working visa.
    B. EMERGENCY LEAVE: In the event of an emergency, XXX will grant immediate leave from the school. If said leave exceeds three working days according to the law, this contract will be terminated, unless an agreement between TEACHER and XXX is met. TEACHER will not receive wages for the hours not taught.
    C. PERSONAL/SICK DAYS: If not a medical emergency, TEACHER may take three personal/sick days off with the understanding that there must be at least six hours to cover or cancel classes. For personal, sick, or emergency leave days TEACHER will not receive wages per class hour not taught. If a grader or other teacher is not available, TEACHER is still responsible for correcting compositions for the missed class(es). If TEACHER must exceed use of three sick days, the allotted holiday time must be used.
    D. REQUEST FOR UNPAID VACATION: TEACHER is given two weeks of unpaid vacation. One week must be Chinese New Year’s vacation. The other week can be scheduled with XXX with one month notice (A full week off in July and August is prohibited). Requests for unpaid days off or a vacation of consecutive days, may be granted only if it does not interfere with the vacation of any other native English speaking teacher including that of the Director of Recruitment. Repeated frequent requests for days off will jeopardize the amount of teaching hours that TEACHER receives as well as bonuses. Request for unpaid vacation should not occur during the probation period. Vacation time off exceeding two weeks is a breach of this contract.

A: The following items were lent to TEACHER and must be returned to XXX before the end of this contract:

B: If items are lost or stolen, the item must be replaced or the cost, assessed by XXX, will be deducted from the TEACHER’s salary.
C: If teacher desires to extend this contract or enter into a second year work agreement, a “statement of intent” in writing should be given to XXX directors three months prior to this contract’s end date.
D: Any taxes or visa concerns shall ultimately be the teacher’s responsibility. XXX can assist and directing concerns or inquiring with the appropriate government authority, but XXX cannot be held responsible for incorrect information or misinterpretation from Taiwanese governmental agencies including “immigration,” “foreign affairs,” or “labor office.”

A: VIOLATION OF VISA: PRIVATE TEACHING: TEACHER agrees not to engage in teaching
activities other than designated by XXX unless another school co-sponsors the visa.
To otherwise do so is a violation of the work visa, will incur cancellation of the work
visa, a fine of NT$20,000, and the termination of this Contract.

  1. As XXX underwent time and expense to recruit, transport, train, assist in finding housing and set up utilities, and process a working visa for TEACHER, if TEACHER leaves without due notice for a non-emergency, it will incur a fine of $NT20,000. XXX will resort to any and all means allowable by law to collect losses incurred. A break of contract by TEACHER will result in the collection of all money spent for the teacher including transportation to (city) from the airport, advertising for the position, and any rent allowance provided if living in the teachers’ apartment.
  2. Under extreme circumstances, such as acts of war, epidemic, personal injury, or family crisis, this contract may be broken without penalty with the exception of any items or money owed to XXX.
  3. If XXX is unable to provide ______ teaching hours, TEACHER may break this contract with one month notice, without penalty, as long as TEACHER has abided by XXX policies and procedures and any loss of classes are determined to be unrelated to TEACHER’s performance.
  4. If NOT extreme circumstances, DUE NOTICE to break this contract is two and one-half months, unless a suitable replacement teacher is hired, and TEACHER will be penalized $NT20,000 for a breach of contact including any items or money owed to XXX. The following items or services were provided for the TEACHER _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________and XXX must be reimbursed for these items or services if contract is broken.
  5. If contract is broken by TEACHER, XXX shall report to the appropriate government agencies in a timely fashion. See also Section 10 D regarding taxes and visas.
    C.)TERMINATION: TEACHER’s employment may be terminated by XXX for JUST CAUSE at any time by the school after one warning for any infraction (1) through (12).
    JUST CAUSE means: 1. willful disobedience
    2. dishonesty
    3. intoxication
    4. insubordination, or frequent rude behavior
    5. incompetence, including not finishing to correct assignments, teaching incorrect lessons, not preparing for classes, or significant loss of students in classes if determined to be related to the TEACHER’s performance.
    6. any breach of sections herein or contrary to XXX policies and procedures.
    7. conduct which jeopardizes the reputation of XXX
    8. chronic lateness to office hours or classes.
    9. repeatedly not ensuring that students have the correct answers written in their class books.
    10. leaving work for longer than 10 minutes unless XXX staff
    is informed (missed time will reduce salary per hour
    11… chronic inflexibility with schedule changes
    12. hitting or throwing items at students
    13. teaching privately or at another school, kindergarten, cram school, or any venue undesignated by XXX.
    14. illness or disability rendering TEACHER incapable of
    performing his duties and obligations
    In the event of a warning for (1) through (13) above, TEACHER will be given an opportunity to respond to said allegations before counting as a formal infraction.
    Depending on the severity of the infraction TEACHER’s position MAY be terminated resulting in cancellation of residence visa and eviction from the Teacher’s apartment.
    D. A VERBAL INDICATION by TEACHER to intend to leave XXX and stop teaching shall constitute a break of this contract. XXX will be forced to terminate TEACHER’s work visa and begin the hiring process for a new teacher. Teacher will be fined NT$20,000 for breach of contract and be evicted from the Teacher’s apartment.
    E. NO SEVERANCE: In the event of a termination upon disability, death, or breach of this contract, XXX is under no obligation to pay TEACHER any amount of money beyond the salary set forth in this contract.
    Section 12. NO UNTRUTHS: TEACHER agrees that any untruth or misleading information provided to XXX in any application form, e-mail correspondence, or during any interview for employment is grounds for immediate dismissal of TEACHER by school.
    Section 13. CONFIDENTIALITY: TEACHER acknowledges that during the course of his/her employment he/she may have access to material such as tests or lesson plans; class records; trade secrets and business strategy; school data such as enrollment; salaries; tuition costs; operation costs and other accounting information; student or parent information, such as addresses or telephone numbers; copy-written work or other information not generally available to the public (collectively called CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION). Accordingly, the TEACHER shall not directly or indirectly disclose, copy, or use for research purpose, such CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION during or after the employment at XXX unless authorized in writing by XXX.
    Section 14. TEACHER’S RECOMMENDATIONS: Any recommendations for future employment or further education will not be furnished by the staff or directors of XXX until the completion of this one-year contract.
    TEACHER_____________________________ DATE_________________
    PALLS ADMINISTRATOR______________________________ DATE_________________

:astonished: Sweet Jesus! j99l88e77, that is NOT a normal contract in Taiwan. Who the hell would sign that?!

If you have any other option don’t teach in Taiwan. If you’re already here then I think you should avoid this school.

This contract is draconian, but in essence it doesn’t seem so different from a standard bushiban contract which are essentially confirmation of being a paid by the hour self-employed worker yet without any of the benefits the self-employed usually enjoy. The maximum 3 days of unpaid sick leave and unpaid office hours seem particularly harsh, and the general tone sounds like they’re looking to pick a fight from the getgo. They’ve made you responsible for sorting out your tax and ARC, which are difficult to do. I also have a problem with bushibans that provide ‘accommodation’ for their teachers. From what I’ve heard from other teachers it’s almost always a con.

Yeah. I had a phone interview and then was sent the contract before waiting for another phone interview with someone else. I didn’t know what to say to the person calling me, really. Asked me what my teaching philosophy was. Pfft.

Can’t believe some of the shit in that contract. Anyway, they didn’t call me back. Gee, too bad.

Told the guy in the 2nd phone call that I taught in Taiwan for a couple of years on a tourist visa. He was “But that’s illegal. Very serious.” Meanwhile, they wanted me to come there and work before getting my visa. Isn’t that illegal, too? Yes. “It’s best no to mention that you are going to Taiwan to work when you go to the TECO office in Korea.” So it can all be sly for their sake, but what I did a few years ago is different."

Fucking wankers. Guys who interviewed me were from Canada and America. To me, it looks like I would be working part-time if they saw fit. Really deceptive shit. And those penalties and the way they worded shit? Puck me.

[quote=“tomthorne”]If you have any other option don’t teach in Taiwan. If you’re already here then I think you should avoid this school.

This contract is draconian, but in essence it doesn’t seem so different from a standard buxiban contract which are essentially confirmation of being a paid by the hour self-employed worker yet without any of the benefits the self-employed usually enjoy. The maximum 3 days of unpaid sick leave and unpaid office hours seem particularly harsh, and the general tone sounds like they’re looking to pick a fight from the getgo. They’ve made you responsible for sorting out your tax and ARC, which are difficult to do. I also have a problem with buxibans that provide ‘accommodation’ for their teachers. From what I’ve heard from other teachers it’s almost always a con.[/quote]

Really? Do tell.

I just started a job in Korea. Start at 1:30 and finish at 6:20. They even fronted me 1000 bucks and free accomodation. The pay is not as high as what I’m used to, but the hours are sweet. Plus no taxes. Guess I should keep it. Taiwan kind of scares me now.


This is a thread I started a long while back when it dawned on me how much I’d been getting screwed. The economy was a lot better then, so a number of posters disagreed with me.

I’m not sure if I agree with everything I said back then, but I think the majority of my gripes were correct.