Quick Tips on Navigating Taipei and Money Matters

I figured living in Tokyo with its complex public transportation system, Taipei will be a breeze. I was wrong.

So just some quick items on lessons learned and tips on navigating Taipei.

Navigating Taipei

  • Buses are your friend. My Taiwanese friend even said that buses are better than trains, if you know what you are doing.
  • Finding the right stop is your challenge. There are a couple of “Taipei Main Stations”. There’s a main station for the train to the airport. There’s a main station for the bus to Sun Moon Lake. There’s a main station for a different bus going to wherever it is. There are main stations of different train/bus lines – and they are not consolidated/they do NOT intersect. So. Allow plenty of time to navigate this.
  • Entrances come with letters (representing street) and numbers (representing which door at that street).
  • I have no idea even now how to differentiate between bus and train in Google Maps. They generally look different, but when I was going to Jiu Fen I really thought I was looking for a bus – it was a train!

Money matters

  • Get an IC card at the airport, and load it for as high as you can. It seems like the only place where you can top up using credit card.
  • Use said IC card whenever credit card is not available.
  • Otherwise, it is cash. Quite a lot of places still do NOT accept credit card.
  • Things are pretty cheap, so I didn’t haggle. πŸ˜‰