Cost of living 2018 in Taiwan

Hello everyone,

As per our annual tradition, we invite you to share your experiences and tell us more about the average prices of products and services in your town/city/area, so that we have updated information regarding cost of living and inflation in Taiwan.

Thanks to your contribution, future expats in Taiwan will be more informed and will be able to refine their budget and better prepare for their big move.

How much does it cost to rent an apartment or a house in Taiwan?

How much does it cost to buy an apartment or a house in Taiwan?

How much do you pay on average for public transportation (bus, subway, train, tram, taxi)?

How much do you pay for basic food items such as rice, bread, and pasta?

What is your monthly budget for groceries?

How much does it cost to see a doctor/dentist/physician/specialist in Taiwan?

How much do you pay for health insurance per month?

How much does childcare cost on average per month?

What is your child's schooling budget per month?

How much does it cost to fill up your car’s fuel tank?

How much do you pay for electricity/gas/water etc., per month?

How much do you pay for your internet and phone subscription?

How much do you pay for your lunch pack on weekdays?

How much do you pay for an espresso coffee?

How much do you pay for a cinema ticket?

How much does a gym membership cost in Taiwan?

Thank you for sharing your experience.


A list of product and service prices in Taipei
1. A 20-year-old, 32 sq.m. bachelor's suite in a 6-story block with elevator in central Taipei with easy access to all amenities can rent for NT$16K monthly.
2. A brand new condo suite of 265 sq.m. along Sec. 2, Zhongshan N. Rd. in a 15-story tower can go for NT$23.7M.
3. A brand new Mini Countryman is priced about NT$1.1M.
4. A 1.86-liter bottle of whole milk is about NT$150.
5. A dental visit including routine checkup and cleaning costs NT$200 for booking for someone covered by the National Health Insurance.
6. A metallic crown with root canal can cost NT$13K or more for someone under the NHI.
7. A set of braces (installed by orthodontist) can cost NT$300K.
8. Parking for an hour ranges NT$20~50, or free up to a couple hours in department store with spending.
9. A McDonald's breakfast of hotcakes, sausage and small orange juice is NT$105.
10. A simple meal at a typical semi-self-serve Taiwanese diner with 2 choices of greens, tofu or one serving of meat as chicken, pork, savory soup or sweet red bean soup with one bowl of rice is about NT$100.       
11. A pair of Merrell men's sneakers at Mitsukoshi is about NT$2,200 on sale.
12. A Columbia men's T-shirt of OMNI-FREEZE fabric is about NT$990 during clearance or double regularly priced.
13. A pair of "SKIP" (Taiwanese brand) men's briefs is NT$100 versus Calvin Klein's at NT$1,280 or Sloggi's at NT$550, all of which being comparable quality.
14. A 5ml bottle of Japanese Kari Uni eye drops to treat cataract is NT$40 at drugstore or double if prescribed and bought at ophthalmologist.
15. Cable TV offering CNN, BBC, DW, Discovery, HBO, Nat Geo and all the popular channels is about NT$300 monthly.
16. A bus ride in metro Taipei is NT$15 for adults.
17. An MRT ride from Taipei train station to Danshueh or Fisherman's Wharf lasting about 35 min. costs about NT$50.
18. The MRT shuttle from Taipei train station to the Taoyuan Int'l Airport costs NT$120.
19. A 6-oz USDA prime filet steak at Texas Roadhouse costs about NT$1,300 with 10% service charge.
20. A brand new Ferrari 488GTB goes for about NT$7.7M.
21. A 1.13kg. bag of Starbucks Pike Place whole beans is about NT$550 at a discount grocer.   
22. A brand new Samsung J5 2016 goes for about NT$5,300 online.
23. A 3kg. bottle of locally-made honey costs about NT$1,750.
24. Admission to a community center pool (25M long) with sauna, whirlpool is NT$110 plus NT$10 for locker (non-refundable).
25. A haircut for men at an upscale salon ranges NT$700 to NT$900 (incl. shampoo) or NT$100~200 at a low-end salon without shampoo or NT$300 at a Japanese-branded chain without shampoo.   

A caveat to potential investors and entrepreneurs!

The above are tangible costs that are easily tallied. But some of the costs resulting from unforeseen incidents or contingencies due to peculiarities of Taiwanese culture can be manifolds higher.

For example the owners and investors of the nightspots in the Shinyi district where a vice cop was mobbed and murdered in 2017. Their sales were impacted due to the fallout where cops carried out random inspections. The particular club of the chaotic incident likely saw plummeting sales due to shutdown. While plenty of news reports expose small businesses that are partly or entirely damaged by hoodlums due to conflict of interest and turf wars.

There are also potentially extra costs of doing business due to corruption in Taiwan. A news report once exposed the customs forwarding sector for routinely charging extra for so-called "expedited service" to evade the incriminating tag of bribery.

The living cost in Taiwan various.
IT's expensive in North while South is cheaper.
The health care insurance is much cheaper & better than
rest of the world.
Renting an apartment cost about $500/month in Taipei.
But you can search  for bargain

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