Local information 4: Financial

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Currency and foreign exchange

Land Bank of Taiwan

The New Taiwan Dollar (NTD, NT$, or TWD; Chinese: 新台幣) is the official currency of the Republic of China administered territories of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen, and Matsu. The banknotes are in denominations of $2000, $1000, $500, $200, $100; notes of $2000 and $1000 are rarely seen. The coins are in denominations of $50, $20, $10, $5, $1, and $0.5; coins of $20 and $0.5 are rarely seen.

For more information about Taiwan's currency, consult the following web pages of The Central Bank of China: NTD notes, NTD coins, and security features.

Many local banks have foreign exchange services. The most representative and reliable banks are the Bank of Taiwan (or Taiwan Bank/臺灣銀行) and the ICBC (中國國際商銀, now merged into Mega International Commerical Bank). You can also exchange your money at the front desk of most hotels.

There are around 15 currencies that can be exchanged at the Bank of Taiwan. This includes the US dollar, Hong Kong dollar, UK Pound, Australian dollar, Canadian dollar, Singapore dollar, Swiss franc, Japanese Yen, Swedish krona, New Zealand dollar, Thai Baht, Philippine peso, Indonesian rupiah, Euro, and Korean Won. Consult http://www.bot.com.tw/English/BusinessUnits/Domestics/default.htm for a list of Bank of Taiwan branches nationwide.

Both terminals of the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TTIA) have foreign exchange kiosks. For more information, visit the TTIA website.

The latest exchange rate may be found at XE.com.

Banks at airport

There are two banks at the airport:

The first is located in the security area, near the duty free shops. This bank opens its business very early and closes very late. If you arrive very early (for example from Europe) or very late, please exchange your currency here. This could be your last possibility.

The second is outside of the security area, near the exit to bus station. This bank opens its business at 7:30 in work days and 10:30 at sunday.

Banks to exchange foreign currency

English addresses as provided by the respective bank’s official website are listed here. The Hanyu Pinyin address and the Chinese address are given in parenthesis.

Taipei Fubon Bank 50, Chung-Shan (Zhongshan/中山) N. Road, Sec. 2, Taipei 02-25425656
Land Bank of Taiwan 46 Kuanchien (Guanqian/館前) Road, Taipei 100 02-23483456
Bank SinoPac 36, Nanking (Nanjing/南京) E. Road, Sec. 3, Taipei 02-25063333
Taiwan Cooperative Bank 77,Kuanchien (Guanqian/館前) Road, Taipei 02-23118811
First Bank 30,Chung-Ching (Chongqing/重慶) S. Road, Sec.1, Taipei 02-23481111
Chang Hwa Bank 27,Chung-Ching (Chongqing/重慶) S. Road, Sec.1, Taipei 02-23617211
Hua Nan Bank 38, Chung-Ching (Chongqing/重慶) S. Road, Sec. 1, Taipei 02-23713111
Cathay United Bank 65, Kuan-Chieng (Guanqian/館前) Road, Taipei 02-23125555
The Shanghai Commercial & Savings Bank, Ltd. 2, Ming-Chuan (Minquan/民權) E. Road, Sec.1, Taipei 02-25817111
Mega International Commercial Bank 123, Sec. 2, Jhongsiao (Zhongxiao/忠孝) E. Rd., Jhongjheng (Zhongzhen) District, Taipei City 100, Taiwan 02-25633156
Bank of Taiwan 120, Chung-Ching (Chongqing/重慶) S. Road, Sec. 1, Taipei 02-23493456
CitiBank 117-1, Sec. 3, Minsheng (民生) E. Rd., Taipei 02-27155931

Credit/debit/ATM cards

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In Taipei, most department stores, chain bookstores, chain supermarkets/hypermarkets, and many restaurants accept credit cards. However, some shops, such as the electronics/computer stores of the Guanghua Market, may impose an extra 5% to 8% surcharge because the price they offer does not cover the credit card transaction/commission fee. VISA and MasterCard are the most accepted cards. Only a few shops accept American Express, Diner's Club, or JCB.

The debit card is seldom applicable in Taiwan and is not recommended at all unless it can act like a VISA or Mastercard.

Many ATM booths (自動櫃員機), located near the entrances of banks and post offices, offer 24 hours service. You can also find ATMs in many chain convenience stores: just check out the special signs outside the stores. Most of the ATMs in Taiwan offer a bilingual menu in Chinese and in English. Unless you have an ATM card issued by a Taiwanese bank, you will be charged a service fee by the bank who owns the ATM.


Sales tax and refund

Uniform Invoice Receipt

Taiwan uses a national receipt system for all purchases, called the Uniform Invoice Receipt (統一發票 ). A five percent hidden sales tax applies to all brick and mortar establishments. Unless you qualify for a sales tax refund, please deposit you Uniform Invoice Receipt into a charity receipt donation box. This is because the government holds a bimonthly lottery based on the receipt's serial number.

Tipping

Except for hotel services, tips are not necessary or expected in Taiwan as there is usually a ten percent service charge added.