9 Interesting Facts You Need to Know Before You Teach in Taiwan
Are you dreaming about moving abroad and teaching? Do you want to experience a diverse culture and explore the beauty of a new country? Taiwan is the perfect place for you!
This small island, located between Japan and the Philippines, covers half the size of Ireland. It’s one of the best destinations for expats based on its safety, locals’ friendliness, and excellent quality of life. With its beautiful coastline, hundreds of mountains, long summers and mild winters, it’s an adventure seeker’s paradise.
If you’re open to discovering a new culture, meeting interesting locals and improving your teaching skills, be sure to consider Taiwan for your next teaching adventure. Here are nine facts to know before you teach in Taiwan.
1. It has been ranked as the best expat destination
Over 10,000 survey participants ranked Taiwan as the best destination in the world for expats in 2019, 2020 and 2021. The main reasons included:
- The ease of settling in
- Excellent quality of life
- High quality, affordable medical care (critical during the pandemic).
Expats are also satisfied with personal safety, with zero survey participants feeling unsafe. Other factors include job security and the state of the economy in Taiwan. The Taiwanese are also seen as extremely friendly towards foreigners, and they have a genuine interest in getting to know them. If you decide Taiwan is the place for you, you’ll certainly make lots of new friends!
2. It’s one of the safest countries in the world
Teach in Taiwan and you’ll be teaching in one of the safest countries globally due to its low crime rate. Taiwan is ranked the second safest country in the world and the safest in Eastern Asia, according to Numbeo. It’s a very safe country for visitors, but as anywhere, basic precautions should be exercised.
3. Most people live along the east coast
With 23 million inhabitants, Taiwan is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. 90% of the country’s population live along the east coast, and about 50% of the land is uninhabitable as it’s covered in forest. The capital city Taipei has a population of almost three million people, and it’s located in the north of the country.
4. It has a variety of climates
The small island has several climate zones. The northern and central parts of Taiwan have a subtropical climate. The southern region has a tropical climate. The mountainous areas are temperate, with moderate rainfall spread throughout the year.
The entire island experiences a long summer from April to October, with a mean temperature of 29°C and a short, mild winter with a mean temperature of 18°C. Taiwan receives most of its total annual rainfall between May and September. Rain is most frequent in July, August and September, and some storms have caused severe damage. Despite this, the rainfall is vital for the island’s water resources and the Taiwanese greet it with relief after the heat of May and June.
5. It’s the perfect country for nature lovers and adventure seekers
Taiwan is unique in its geographical makeup, and there are hundreds of mountains here. Over two hundred of Taiwan’s mountains are more than 3,000 metres high. It’s no surprise, then, that mountain climbing is a popular activity.
Whether it is a hike along streams and valleys, following rivers and crossing several peaks or a climb on the city’s outskirts, plenty of outdoor adventures await in Taiwan. When you teach in Taiwan, you have the choice of nine national parks – each with distinctive landscapes – to explore. Take in volcanic craters and lakes, winding rivers, tropical landscapes, beautiful beaches and other cultural and natural attractions in the parks.
Along the east coast, you can also find beautiful coral reefs and an array of sea animals in the Pacific Ocean. This includes bottlenose and spinner dolphins. If you enjoy immersing yourself in nature, the chance to teach in Taiwan is the perfect opportunity for you.
6. 7-Elevens are not just small convenience stores
With over 10,000 stores, Taiwan has the highest density and variety of 7-Eleven markets in the world. This is one of the most popular brands of small supermarket around Asia, and they are dotted all around Taiwan’s urban and rural areas. You can find these convenience stores in coastal areas, mountainous regions, hospitals, schools and villages.
It’s difficult to walk through Taipei for ten minutes without spotting the store’s bright iconic colours. 7-Eleven is also the first supermarket in Asia to announce that they will be phasing out single-use plastics in Taiwan, which is a big deal for Asia as plastic consumption is very high. The stores are open 24/7 and cater to everyone’s needs, with some even having a place to work out! When in Taiwan, you should experience this for yourself.
7. Umbrellas are used for more than just rain
When the sun comes out, so do the umbrellas. The Taiwanese like to protect themselves from the rays of the sun. Along with much of the Asian population, the Taiwanese cover their fair skin with hats, long sleeves, trousers, sunglasses and umbrellas. You may even see some hikers carrying umbrellas to hide from the rays.
8. The country has a high-speed rail line
Did you know that Japan is not the only country that has a high-speed train system? Taiwan’s bullet trains are derived from the Japanese Shinkansen, and they run at a top speed of 300km/h. This means you can get from the capital Taipei in the north to Kaohsiung in the south in less than two hours. The country’s well-connected transport system is ideal for those who want to teach in Taiwan and see all the country has to offer.
9. Requirements to teach in Taiwan
To teach in Taiwan, you must meet the following requirements:
- You must be a native English speaker and a passport holder from the USA, Canada, UK, Ireland or New Zealand
- Your passport must be in date for a minimum of two years to apply for a work visa
- You must have completed a bachelor’s degree or higher
- Most importantly, you must be open-minded to experiencing a new culture, have a hard work ethic, enthusiasm and flexibility.
Does Taiwan sound like the TEFL destination for you? Find out more about our paid Taiwan internships and how to apply today.