Should I Move To Taiwan?


Hey guys,

So I am thinking about moving to Taiwan to hopefully teach corporate/adult ESL

The problem is that I’m Chinese Canadian, so I know that I will instantly be discriminated against, even though I pretty much grew up in Canada. But I do speak Mandarin, and understand Cantonese, and I’m hoping to present that as an advantage. I was contemplating between Shanghai and Taiwan.

But leaning towards Taiwan, because it’s easier to get the initial visa but I think the demand for ESL teachers, especially private tutoring is a lot lower.

So, just wondering how easy/difficult would it be to secure a decent paying ESL teaching job with good salary/benefits with not too many hours that would give me a work permit, and allow me to do other things on the side? Is bilingualism extremely common here, and where/how should I look for a well packaged job?


You’re not allowed to do anything on the side if you have a normal work permit. :frowning_face:

Wages are crap, for the most part. There are mandatory benefits, but the law is frequently ignored. :frowning_face:

You now need a criminal record check to work in a buxiban (“cram school”), and no-one is sure how the new system actually works. :frowning_face:

In the future there may be an “employment gold card” that makes Taiwan a much more attractive and convenient destination for work. We can dream. :grinning: :rainbow:

As a Canadian you can apply for a working holiday visa (search for threads about it) for one year, which solve the work permit problem, but only for one year. :timer_clock:


Obviously private tutoring is one of those things that are illegal but everyone does anyways. The working holiday visa is not worth the cost and inconvenience of it according to most, it’s easier for me to just get a work permit LOL.

You basically answered none of my questions -_-


Cost and inconvenience of the working holiday? Wake up to yourself! Nothing could be further from the truth. For an ARC and work permit application, you need a health check, a criminal record check, AND the testamur from your college/university, AND you need be in Taiwan to finalize everything. With the WHV, you need a health check, MAYBE a criminal record check, then you just walk into your nearest TECO and apply. If you apply on Monday you will have your passport back with the WHV in it by Friday the same week. You can get on the plane the same day and literally as soon as you step foot inside Taiwan (after passing immigration of course) you can literally start working that very in almost ANY job (barring of course things you need a particular license for ie. medical practice and the like) 100% legally. It’s open working rights that requires no time spent in Taiwan and no qualification other than citizenship of a participating working holiday scheme country and being within the 18-30 age range. It’s approved ahead of time and you’re virtually guaranteed to get it if you apply with everything in order because the number of applicants is well below their yearly maximum quota of recipients. The only catch is that it only lasts a year.


That sums up the convenience of it, but my understanding of the recent amendment to the Supplementary Education Act is that you now need a criminal record check to work in a buxiban, even if you don’t need a work permit (i.e. if they catch you there without the crc, the buxiban will be in trouble and presumably told to let you go until you get one). As I said, no one is really sure right now.

OP, there are threads about ABC’s, BBC’s, CBC’s, stagnant salaries, the rarity of decent teaching jobs, etc. I don’t think anything has really changed in recent years, except the criminal record check. You are welcome to use our fabulous search function. :bowing:


Or I could, you know just walk into Taiwan, look around for a job and decide if I actually wanna stay in the country, and get ARC/work permit if I find something like MOST people do and save myself the unecessary paperwork.

Health check, CRC, and the degree required is necessary documents for THE JOB so I would need it anyways.


You seem set against a WHV, which is totally fine. Enjoy your trip, and if you do go to Taiwan, remember not to break the law. :bowing:

In case anyone else reading this is curious:

You don’t need a degree to get a WHV. Whether or not a particular employer wants to see your diploma and/or teaching certificate is a separate question.

The other thing about a WHV is that it lets you do jobs you wouldn’t be able to get a work permit for (because the government only issues work permits for jobs that are on its approved-for-foreigners list). So for example, if you visit a nice hostel and want to extend your stay by working there, you can do it, legally.