You will need your passport, Alien Resident Certificate (ARC), and student ID card to open a bank account.
Note that you won’t be able to open a bank account until you receive your Alien Resident Certificate (ARC). If you haven’t reached the age of 20, the Post Office is more suitable for you, since they only require your student ID card, passport, ARC and personal seal.
Minimum Amounts for Opening a Bank Account
The common minimum amount required to open a bank account is NT$1,000, though some banks require NT$10,000 or more.
Tax Withheld on Interest Income
Those who reside in Taiwan for less than 183 days will have a 20% withholding tax from interest income. Those residing in Taiwan 183 days or more will have 10% withheld. It’s highly recommended you open an account at an international bank, such as CTBC Bank, Mega International Commercial Bank, etc.
The Nearest Financial Institutions to the Main Campus
- CTBC Bank 376 Zhongshan Road, Hualien (03) 834-0566
- Post Office 52 Fu-Guo Road, Hualien (03) 857-7820
- Mega International Commercial Bank 26 Gong-Yuan Road, Hualien (03) 835-0191
- Taiwan Cooperative Bank 371 Zhongshan Road, Hualien (03) 835-0151
Most banks exchange foreign currencies at reasonable rates.
Have an ATM Card
Upon request, you will be given an ATM card. If offered, ask for a “Cirrus” or “Plus” card so you will be able to withdraw money from ATMs outside of Taiwan, too.
The Maximum Daily Amount to Withdraw from ATMs
Most banks allow their customers to withdraw between NT$90,000 and NT$150,000 per day from their own ATMs. It’s usually in increments of NT$30,000. This limit can be increased or decreased simply by amending your account at the teller window of your bank.
Applying for a Credit Card in Taiwan
If you have a Taiwanese friend who will co-sign for you, your chances of getting a credit card will significantly improve. If you have high monthly income, you will most certainly be offered a credit card, and as in the US or Canada, your personal financial situation matters. Typically, proving you have a regular and decent monthly income, proven by transfers to your bank account, is enough to get your first credit card. Don’t be surprised, though, if the ceiling is quite low and the interest rate is high.