10 things You’ll find in Taiwan and not USA

by Tony Chung on August 8, 2007

taipei

Rather than blogging about my days here, I figured it’d be more worth your time to read 10 interesting customs that you will find here in Taiwan. So if you’re ever schmoozing with someone from Asia, you have something to break the ice with. :) “I heard that…”

  1. Want a plastic bag for your items at the grocery store? Buy it. Yep, a few cents for a plastic bag, it’s not free. An environment-friendly gesture by the government?
  2. Tea is in everything. This is true. Coffee tea, Mango milk tea, milk tea, etc. Some sort of tea usually comes with your meal. Nine times out of ten if you are at a drink shop, you will see various types of tea on the menu.
  3. “Welcome to our store… farewell, thanks for coming!” At most stores, whether it’s a restaurant or a corner store, you will be greeted by the store clerk and he/she will bid you farewell when you walk out the door. Necessary? Not really. Makes you feel welcome and you might come back? Maybe (but everyone does it, so…).
  4. Stray dogs everywhere. A bit scary at night…
  5. Taxis. Taxis. Taxis. Mopeds. Mopeds. Mopeds. Yes lots of both. Mopeds because distances between areas are smaller here than in the US, so it makes sense to ride a moped instead of driving a fat car.
  6. 7-Eleven is the Starbucks here. In terms of frequency. They are everywhere. Literally.
  7. Guy purses are in. This is because it’s hard to find trash cans in Taiwan. They are not as prevalent as in the States. And also, many people here leave their house in the morning and don’t get back till the night. So in order to carry everything, males bring guy purses around… not as many backpacks.
  8. Karaoke is THE entertainment source here. Much of the salary from my first album was from Karaoke sales. It’s the thing to do here. People even practice at home to show off when the time comes.
  9. Very cheap LCD computer monitors. My widescreen 20″ (I think) was less than $200 I think.
  10. CUGGI. (GUCCI backwards). A lot of night markets here, there you will find lots of pirated goods, like fake Nike shoes or “Junsport” backpacks, etc. I kid you not.

Whew! There you go. Now you’ve been to Taiwan. :)

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