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Gettting Around Taiwan
In Taiwan, there are four primary commercial airports offering international flight service, along with several smaller airports offering domestic flight service. The large majority of visitors coming to Taiwan will arrive at and leave from Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, located just outside of Taipei City.
A common question that visitors may ask when visiting Taiwan is "if Taiwan is Taiwan, and China is China, then why do license plates say 臺灣省"?
This question is actually very easy to answer!
The modern Republic of China is primarily located on Taiwan, or Ilha Formosa, located around 300 kilometres southeast off the coast of mainland China's Fujian Province. Besides Taiwan, the ROC also includes Kinmen (Quemoy), Matsu, the Penghu archipelago (also known as the Pescadores), and various disputed territories in the South China Sea.
The Republic of China (Taiwan) allows certain passport holders visa-free entry for tourism, visiting friends or relatives, social visits, doing business, attending exhibitions, fact finding, and international exchanges.
In order to be approved for visa-free entry, make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months (3 months for Japanese), can prove you do not intend on staying indefinitely in Taiwan (either by a flight reservation or some type of itinerary), and have no criminal record or other extenuating circumstances in the ROC.
What is the Taipei Bus?
Taiwan's public transit system is extremely well developed, especially in Taipei where it covers practically every possible destination with relatively few transfers. Along with the Taipei MRT, the bus system accepts the EasyCard and provides an excellent, convenient way to get around the city.
Visit the following links to learn more about Taiwan.
The Taiwan Railway Administration (台灣鐵路管理局), commonly posted on signage as simply TRA is the main railway service in Taiwan, and provides convenient access to a large majority of locations all over Taiwan.
Be sure to arrive early for your scheduled train, as the layout of some stations is a bit awkward and the lack of clear signage sometimes makes it difficult to find the proper track.
Called 預付卡, yù fù kǎ, prepaid SIM cards are easily accessible in Taiwan for a relatively low startup cost. SIM cards can be purchased in city shops, at the airport, or in advance online with a simple pickup at the airport. Getting a data plan is easy, but make sure to check all the available plans before choosing.
Ever wonder what the numerical code at the top of receipts in Taiwan is used for? These numbers are for a lottery run by the government, and you have a free entry!
Known in Chinese as 同意發票 (Tǒngyī Fāpiào), the bi-monthly receipt invoice lottery was created to encourage legal tax reporting by giving consumers an incentive to purchase at stores that legally report sales taxes. Every two months, sets of numbers are randomly drawn that correspond to the eight numbers printed along the top of a legal receipt.