Survey: make life easier for foreigners in Taiwan

I’ve been asked this question by a researcher, and any useful replies will be forwarded to the gov’t. So, seriously please…

What could be improved to make life easier for foreigners in Taiwan?
(This applies to gov’t regs, private companies, the public sphere, ect.)

Sidewalks. Seriously. The sidewalks here always have motorcycles on them. Motorcycle free sidewalks would be keen!!

They’ve already done that. Most sidewalks now have to have a straight dedicated lane free of scooters, or shop stalls. I see this everywhere now. You can actually look down a street and see a clear walking path down the sidewalk. Yes, there are scooters but they are all to one side.

Hmm, you must live ina bad neighborhood. :wink:

I would say more efforts to keep parks and public areas clean. There’s been huge improvements in recent years but not enough. For example, along the dikes in Muzha the open spaces are kept clean but there is always trash in the bushes. This is obvious but the workers won’t go in to clean. Every now and then all the bushes are cut and you see how much garbage there is. A week later another crew comes in and cleans but they do a poor job as they usually aren’t willing to climb up the slope to get garbage.

Beaches need to be cleaned in summer and winter. All year round. This would encourage people to go in the off-season and help local business. They do this is Kaohsiung now. You even see cleaners out during the day which you almost never see in Taipei.

Sunday cleaning. The city is a pigsty by Sunday afternoon.

Allow us to transfer our drivers license without going through the circus ring that is the test here.

:smiley: I said that! And you’re in Taipei. Try Taichung. Ugh.

What’s up with getting local guarantors for employment?
Access to mortgages?
Credit card hassles, anyone?
Potable tap water?

Make it illegal for businesses to refuses services based solely on the fac that they are a foreigner- credit cards, cellphone contracts, and so on-

actually live up to that reciprocity agreement that they have

For sake, using ONE system in terms of English Translations (Pingyin or something called like that?)
“Hsin_Yi road” = Xinyi road and so on. My GPS maps would finally be usefull on my PDA…

Non-employer-specific working permits would make life much better for expats here. Working visas should be handled like green cards - they should relate only to the individual, and not to their working status. Verification of credentials should be done by the TECO office in the country where they were issued.

Using the international standard for Mandarin romanization, Hanyu Pinyin, would be a nice gesture to the international community.

And allowing for the possibility of more than one English language radio station would also be very nice.

Legal permanent residents should be able to run for political office.

[quote=“Maoman”]Non-employer-specific working permits would make life much better for expats here. Working visas should be handled like green cards - they should relate only to the individual, and not to their working status. Verification of credentials should be done by the TECO office in the country where they were issued.


I agree wholeheartedly. If I could change 1 thing about Taiwan, it would be the work permit.

The 2nd thing I’d look into is a revamping of the buxiban system for kids. Make it more experiential. Instead of importing any nose with a BA, they could incentivize English-based social programs such as community sports and arts and all the other special interest pursuits we did as kids, thereby attracting a more specialized coach" or “sensei”, if you will… Double up on the learning as it were. Baseball leagues and ballet classe that are English environments, so to speak. Alleycat et al could coach cricket and give up that tedious restaurant biz. BuLaiEn, what would you say to coaching rubgy (sic) instead of pronunciation and spelling? I know a boatload of incredibly gifted musicians that waste their supreme talents and time drilling phonics into the heads of draconianly overtaxed minds of the Taiwanese youth. Let the kids be kids. Won’t anyone think of the children?

You might want to look at this topic:

The traffic updates on the Freeway made available with English translation.

This has been touched on before, but… Establish and live up to a system of reciprocity that offers foreigners in Taiwan the exact same rights and privileges that Taiwanese enjoy when they visit or live in our respective countries… This should apply to all rights and privileges, for example visa application, types of visa, duration of stay, access to banking, telecom, internet services, naturalization and the right to vote, owning property, registering and operating businesses, taxation, insurance, driving licenses, public services and amenities, everything… Nation by nation, exact and equal reciprocity, nothing could be more fair… Stop the “all take and no give” system of “reciprocity” currently practiced by the TW government…

Also, the Taiwan government should realize that “International Standard” means just that, a standard for all nations, terminate all these crackpot policies and systems that have Taiwan flying in the face of reason and the rest of the international community WRT import/export taxes and regulations, Pinyin systems, obscure bigoted laws etc. etc.

:bravo: :bravo: :bravo: I’m thinkin…Minister of Entertainment and Recreational Beverages…has a nice ring to it!

Plastmatron, some specific instances if bigoted laws would likely be helpful.

Let eligible foreigners obtain local citizenship without having to renounce their original citizenship - at least on a reciprocal basis, applicable to citizens of countries that give such a right to ROC citizens.

And let those lovely binlang babes wear as little as they wish, without wasting police resources cracking down on and hassling them. Those girls are one of Taiwan’s prime attractions, much appreciated by a high percentage of foreign visitors.

[quote=“Maoman”]Non-employer-specific working permits would make life much better for expats here. Working visas should be handled like green cards - they should relate only to the individual, and not to their working status. Verification of credentials should be done by the TECO office in the country where they were issued.


Yes. Absolutely yes. I think Taiwan should recognize the need for foreign workers in various fields and issue resident visas from their overseas missions. The individual granted the work permit and resident visa would then be free to enter Taiwan and legally work in any job (as well as mulitple jobs) within the field authorized by their permit, so long as they are paying taxes.


Renewals of ARC/resident visas shouldn’t require health checks. APRC shouldn’t need to be applied for and should be automatic after living here the required length of time.

Of course, the drivers license and credit issues as well.

This is being too narrowly defined as to relating mostly to the needs of “English Teachers.”

I agree with most of the suggestions but I think something more basic is being overlooked.
For any of these things to be effective they must be in a culture/society that will actually abide by the rules. And hae a legal system in place that will assure that those who chose otherwise will be penalized…and rehabilitated…of course.

What is missing is this aspect of a culture/society here on the island. Face it…the locals here could give a dirty rats pattootie about the laws and obeying them. Look at the traffic here. Unless there is an LEO standing at the corner these dirt monkies could care less if the light is green or red. And frankly, the LEO’s presence is really not all that important to a lot of 'em as it is.

And this disregard starts at a very early age. Children are scooter passengers and learn they don’t have to wear a helmet. They learn that the lines on the roads mean nothing. They learn that the pretty lights that change colors don’t really mean anything as Mama’ and Papa’ cut thru them and weave into oncoming traffic to make a left turn against traffic.
They learn that littering is inconsequential as they watch mei mei throw her trash on the sidewalk as she leaves the 7-11. Little kids get this crap imprinted into their little skuls of mush and then grow-up to be ‘big kids’ lacking the where-withal to understand that there is a better way for them and the society they live in.

And they see it reinforced everyday when they watch the TV tabloid news with the “adults” in their governing legislature fighting like little sissies and throwing food.

Great examples you’re setting for the Kids Taiwan…Great Friggin’ example.

It has to start with the children. They tend to grow up and act out what they’ve learned…ya know.

I’m a father now…and this stuff has entered my life…so I think about it now.

Oh…I forgot to add…“I would like to have big bags of potatoe chips” available. I can’t seem to find those anywhere.

It might also be nice if Taiwan did more things to make life easier for Taiwanese citizens too: Like improve building construction codes and require electricians, plumbers, bricklayers and such folk to be certified to do the work.

Actually, there’s a particular interest in eliminating obstacles to attracting more white collar talent behind this, so go nuts.

Ok, not too nuts. Themes are fine, specifics better.