The Taiwanese currency is the New Taiwan Dollar. The currency code for money in Taiwan is TWD. The most common abbreviation is NT$. Most commonly, it is called the Taiwan dollar. Taiwanese money is currently being issued by the Central Bank of the Republic of China.
In Mandarin Chinese, the currency of Taiwan is called Xin tai bi, which means “new Taiwan currency”. In common usage, people refer to Taiwan’s money as the “yuan” or “kuai“.
Taiwan’s currency comes in the following denominations:
- Coins – 1NT$, 5NT$, 10NT$, 50NT$
- Notes – 100NT$, 500NT$, 1000NT$
Where can I change money in Taiwan?
You can change money upon arrival at the three Taiwanese international airports in Taipei, Taichung, and Kaohsiung, but I encourage you to wait to exchange your currency at one of the Taiwanese banks in the major cities. You’ll probably get a better exchange rate in banks than at airports. Some big hotels in Taiwan also offer currency exchange services. Private money changers are very rare in Taiwan.
Important!!! If you still have Taiwanese money at the end of your trip, make sure you change it before you leave – even if it’s at one of Taiwan’s international airports. Exchanging Taiwan’s currency abroad (even in Asia) can be difficult. I repeat: don’t bring money from Taiwan to your next destination!
How can I access my travel fund in Taiwan?
ATMs can be found everywhere in Taiwan (except in remote villages in the mountains) and it is by far the safest and most convenient method of obtaining your money. Most ATM machines in Taiwan accept international systems like Cirrus, Star, Interlink, Plus and Accel. Very few banks in Taiwan will let you take a cash advance at the counter if you don’t have your PIN. You can find ATMs in most Taiwanese banks, convenient stores, department stores, and post offices.
Using your Credit Card in Taiwan
You can use your credit card to pay for hotels, train tickets, High Speed Rail tickets, car rentals, and in most restaurants. Most stores will also take your credit card, but they might take as much as 3% in tax, so make sure you ask beforehand.
Using Traveler’s Cheques in Taiwan
Only the biggest banks in Taiwan will exchange your traveler’s cheques. There is little advantage these days to carry them around. Credit cards and ATM cards are much more convenient and are accepted almost everywhere. Some of the biggest Taiwanese banks are CitiBank, HSBC, Bank of Taiwan and International Commercial Bank of China (ICBC).
Typical Cost of Taiwanese Items
Your money in Taiwan will take you much further than it would in countries like Japan, Hong Kong, or Singapore. This is what you should expect to pay for the following items in Taiwan. At the time of writing, you could get 32NT$ for 1US$.
- A 500ml bottle of water: 20NT$
- A chicken fried rice: 60NT$
- A can of Heineken beer at a convenient store: 40NT$
- A loaf of bread: 30NT$
- A movie ticket: 240NT$
- A train ticket from Taipei to Kaohsiung: 845NT$
- My rent for a 3 bedroom apartment (in Taichung): 10 000NT$
Should You Tip in Taiwan?
The questions you should ask yourself is: Do Taiwanese people tip in Taiwan? The answer is no. Tipping is not expected or required in Taiwan. Not even in restaurants, bars, hotels, or taxis.
Should You Bargain in Taiwan?
Definitely! You MUST bargain for hotel rooms, car / scooter rental and house rental. Bargaining in Taiwan is also very common at night markets (except for food), with street vendors, and for long taxi rides. Do not bargain in supermarkets, department stores, or restaurants.
Opening a Bank Account in Taiwan
If you stay for a longer period, you will probably want to open a bank account to access your money in Taiwan. You will be required to show your Taiwanese resident visa (ARC – alien resident certificate), and your passport. Some Taiwanese banks require a co-signer as a guarantor.
I hope the information I gave you about Taiwan’s currency was helpful. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any other question about money in Taiwan.