Living in Taiwan

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Taiwan COVID level 3 alert

Life in the Time of COVID: Taiwan Edition

For the past year and a half, I’ve been extremely grateful to live here. It has been a place largely free of the dangers of COVID-19, a safe bubble, thanks to Taiwan’s rapid response to the initial outbreak, careful contact tracing and strict border control and quarantine enforcement. Taiwan’s response was “among the best“. But over the past month we’ve watched our case numbers steadily climb as outbreaks in and around Taipei have spiralled. All because of a simple decision...

Taiwan Receipt Lottery, Uniform Invoice Lottery

The Taiwan Receipt Lottery: How to Play, Win & Get Your Money

In Taiwan, it’s well worth keeping track of your receipts. The Taiwan Receipt Lottery, formally known as the “Uniform Invoice Lottery” (In Chinese 統一發票 Tǒngyī Fāpiào), gives all residents the chance to win up to 10 million NTD (over 350,000 USD)! Say whaaaaaaat?! YES, and it doesn’t matter who you are – even tourists can redeem winnings (assuming you stick around long enough)! Entry is as simple as buying a bottle of water at 7-11 – the numerical code on...

Refrigerator Repair Illustrated

A Visit From the Refrigerator Repair Man, Illustrated

Sometimes it can be aggravating how difficult it is to do simple things in foreign countries without speaking the language. A lot of the time, though, it’s pretty funny (particularly in hindsight). A couple weeks ago we had a “fridge incident” (read: I didn’t unplug the fridge while I gave it a deep clean, and because the door was open for so long it froze over and the temp soared. I’ve cleaned many a fridge many a time in my...

Taking out the trash in Taiwan