Is living in Taiwan stressful and hard? Explained in 9 Advantages and Disadvantages!


Hello everyone! I’m @olivertomolife and I just got back from studying abroad in Taiwan!

If you are a newcomer to Taiwan, or if you are planning to live here in the future, there are some things you should know about the advantages and disadvantages.

I don’t want you to have any regrets if your life in Taiwan is different from what you imagined, so I’m going to write about the good and bad points I found in Taiwan!

Recommended for the following people
  • Those who want to study in Taiwan in the future, but are worried about how to prepare for living there.
  • Want to hear the opinions of people who have actually lived in Taiwan.
  • Want to know more about life in Kaohsiung.

Contents of this article
  • Disadvantages of Living in Taiwan
  • Is it true that you can’t flush paper down the toilet?
  • Is the air quality bad in Taiwan?
  • What are the traffic manners in Taiwan?
  • Do you have to take your own trash to the dump?
  • Advantages of Living in Taiwan
  • Low cost of living
  • Good public facilities
  • IC cards are accepted in almost all public transportation systems.
  • Cheap rent for apartments in Kaohsiung
  • Transportation is inexpensive

I experienced a working holiday in Kaohsiung for one year from February 2020. I am currently writing a blog based on that experience.

By reading this post, you’ll get to know the advantages and disadvantages of living in Taiwan!


Disadvantages of living in Taiwan

Is it true that you can’t flush paper down the toilet?


Toilets are the most important part of life in Taiwan, but basically you cannot flush paper down the toilet except in large airports, department stores, and new buildings.

This is because most of the water pipes in Taiwanese toilets are very thin, so paper cannot be flushed…

If you think like a Japanese, you will be in trouble, so be careful!

Also, many public toilets are not equipped with paper.

There is a paper vending machine at the entrance of the restroom, so you need to buy some.

You will need to buy paper from a vending machine at the entrance of the restroom, and please note that only coins are accepted.

Is the air quality bad in Taiwan?

air Taiwan

The air quality in Taiwan is bad, except in the eastern part of the country.

This is due to the fact that there are many factories.

When I was living in Kaohsiung, I once casually looked up at the sky and saw that it was black and cloudy.

For this reason, the weather forecast in Taiwan always shows the air level.

It is recommended that you check it in your daily life.

What are the traffic manners in Taiwan?

transport Taiwan

My personal feeling is that traffic manners are worse in the south than in the north.

Especially in Kaohsiung, traffic manners are really bad.

Even when you are walking on the road, people rush into the street without thinking about the pedestrians.

I was almost hit by a car several times.

Please be careful of cars and motorcycles when crossing the street!

Do you go to the garbage dump by yourself?

trash Taiwan

In Taiwan, you have to take your garbage to a garbage truck and throw it away by yourself.

In some places, garbage is collected at your apartment.

Every evening except Wednesdays and Sundays, there are yellow and white cars that make noise and go around the city.

Garbage bags are sold in supermarkets and you need to use them.

When renting a house, it is a good idea to ask the landlord if there is a garbage dumpster in the house.

Advantages of living in Taiwan

Low cost of living

discount Taiwan

In Taiwan, where prices are low, you can eat common Taiwanese food at low prices!

Also, since the country has a thriving culture of eating out, you can eat at breakfast restaurants at low prices.

Also, Uber Eats, a home delivery service, is convenient because the fees are lower than in Japan!

Good public facilities

Taiwan library

One of the advantages of living in Kaohsiung is that you can use the city library for free.

It’s called the Kaohsiung City Library, and it’s the biggest and most beautiful place in the city.

You need to register to borrow books, but even foreigners can borrow books.

More information about the library can be found in the following article.

IC cards can be used in almost all public transportation.

Taiwan bus

IC cards are very popular in Taiwan and are convenient to use in various forms of transportation.

Health insurance cards for the elderly come with IC cards, and I think this is helping to underpin their popularity.

Cash can also be charged at stations and convenience stores, so it is very convenient.

Be sure to carry your IC card with you in your daily life!

Apartment rent is cheap in Kaohsiung.

Taiwan apartment

Apartments in the south are cheaper than those in the north.

The rent in Kaohsiung City, where I studied, was also cheap, and I recommend it.

For example, if a good place to live in Taipei costs $15,000 Taiwan dollars, you can live in Kaohsiung for $10,000 Taiwan dollars.

As a back-up, you can sometimes negotiate the rent down in Taiwan, so please try to negotiate!

Low transportation costs

Taiwan taxi

Transportation costs in Taiwan are much cheaper than in Japan.

Cabs cost 410 yen per kilometer in Tokyo, and the price goes up, but in Taiwan, the first ride is $80 Taiwan dollars, so it is a little cheaper.

Also, the meter is converted by the hour, so it is more profitable to use the nearest place.

The subway also costs an average of $20 Taiwan dollars, which is cheaper than Tokyo.

However, it is a pity that there are no commuter passes for trains like in Japan.

In Taipei and Kaohsiung, there are bicycles for rent, which may save you more money than the subway.

Bicycle rentals in Kaohsiung are free within 30 minutes, so by all means, use them!


Taiwan Taipei

  • Many toilets do not allow flushing paper.
  • Air quality is bad, check the weather forecast.
  • Traffic manners are worse than in Japan.
  • You have to go to the garbage disposal by yourself.

  • Prices are cheap
  • Public facilities are well-equipped.
  • IC cards can be used in many places
  • Cheap rent for apartments in the south
  • Transportation is inexpensive

Here is a summary of the advantages and disadvantages of living in Taiwan!

I hope this will be helpful to everyone.

I will keep sending out more information about Taiwan, so please stay tuned.

Thank you for reading to the end!