Essential Tips for Finding Off-Campus Housing

The following information have been researched and compiled by local and international volunteers (Sophia, Cassidy, Yolanda, and Chris) in order to help international students with finding their own home away from home in Taipei.

Recommended Areas to Seek For Your Own Cozy Off-Campus Place:

This map should be relatively familiar to you, in case you have already made your very first few steps around the city:
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Most students at NCCU prefer to live in neighborhoods located in close proximity to our school, or at least in close reach when commuting via MRT. Thus, many recommend to live in areas along the brown line. To be more precise, this would specifically include the MRT stations starting from Taipei Zoo Station all the way to Wanfang Hospital.
It takes around 30 minutes from NCCU to get to Taipei City Hall, and approximately 40 minutes to go to Gongguan. We suggest therefore that you do not live any farther away than those two indicated stations (consider them as the maximum outskirts of the advised area) in order to be able to commute back and forth NCCU and your home without a hassle.

An important factor to keep in mind when looking for your own apartment/room is also that the rent will actually increase the closer your place is to one of the MRT stations. Hence, it may be advisable to accept a 5 to 10 minutes walk to the nearest MRT station and thereby saving a couple of 100ntds per month. 

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Our school is located in Wenshan District. Be aware that although the different districts might look quite close to one another on the map, it actually takes a relatively long time to get to other parts of Taipei. We would for this very reason suggest that you make Wenshan District your prioritized area for your house-hunting
Besides, the districts located in the heart of Taipei, such as Xinyi District, Daan District, and even some places in Zhongzheng District, will ask for much higher rents than commonly found in Wenshan. This is, among other things, due to the fact that they are considered business areas.

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As indicated above, even within Wenshan District rent prices can vary quite greatly. Chances of striking a good apartment deal in the indicated green and yellow areas above are thus much higher than in the area marked in red.

Useful Sources and Rental Websites for Long-Term and Short-Term Housing:

It is certainly not impossible to find different kinds of apartments or housing styles in Taipei without having a thorough command of the Chinese language. The following 6 rental websites represent some of the international-friendly pages available:

1) Tealit
2) Hostelworld
3) Intaipeiapartments
4) Mangoroc
5) Rentaltw
6. Tsuei Ma-Ma Foundation for Housing and Community Services

7) Apart from that, the Borderless House website offers interested students the wonderful opportunity to live in international houses in between local Taiwanese and people from all over the world.

8) Alternatively, you also always have the choice to join multiple of the various apartment rental groups on Facebook and to try your luck there. Some of the more popular ones are; for instance:
Taipei Taiwan Apartment Rentals: 
– Looking for Roommates or Apartments in Taipei and Taiwan:

Short-Term Housing:

In case you prefer searching for places to stay while already being in Taiwan, you may require a temporary accommodation until you have found the apartment of your dreams (rather than the one of your darkest nightmares). While there aren’t many short-term housing facilities around campus, In-Stone Motel offers decent quality rooms for fair prices:
9) In-Stone Motel:
Address: No. 15, Section 2, Xiuming Road, Wenshan District, Taipei City, 116
Phone: 02 8661 7070

Sample Residential Lease Agreement:

The very last step of your journey is of course signing the residential lease agreement. This is usually a standard form which will be adopted (aside from minor adjustments) by almost every landlord in Taiwan. We did noticed that many landlords will not (be able to) provide you with an English version of the agreement (most likely due to the existing language barrier). While it is essential that you have a local person of your trust reading through the agreement prior to signing it, the following link directs you to a translated version of the most commonly used residential leasing agreement in Taiwan.

Further Assistance:

In case you do need any further assistance, please refer to the facilities offered to you on NCCU Campus. The NCCU Student Housing Section located on the 3rd floor of the Administration Building will be willing to help you.

 

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International NCCU Alumni Shares His Wisdom On How To Land A Job in Taiwan:

Prosper, our former IMBA student at NCCU recently returned to our university on his annual visit back to Taiwan to share his personal story with us. The Burkinabé is part of the 2009 IMBA graduate program batch and had graduated in the year 2011. We met him yesterday for an interview regarding his experience working for a Taiwanese company, while he had a reunion with some of the program’s staff in the building of commerce on campus.

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In fact, his journey started with a simple internship recommended to him by a friend during his 4th semester in the IMBA program. At the time of the internship, his work was primarily concerned with translations from French to English. Yet, his boss having noticed his potential and capabilities, hired him right after Prosper’s graduation and allocated a new position and tasks to him. Prosper mentioned that doing the internship (although focusing on the translation part) had provided him with the opportunity to get to know the other areas in which the company was active. As it turned out, they were eager to approach the African market, in which they did not have a strong presence yet. Thus, Prosper seemed to be the right man for the job, given his thorough knowledge of the western Africa region.

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Equipped with his expertise on his home country and the region, Prosper got dispatched back to Burkina Faso around 4 years ago. Extensive knowledge on the customs, etiquettes and the market of your home country thus represents one of the main advantages that international students may have over their local competitors. Hence, international students should definitely take companies into consideration that are operating back home or that target familiar foreign markets. Apart from that, it is highly recommended that international students learn Chinese in order to improve their employability.
easyThat is not to say that you have to be fluent in Chinese. A basic command of the language will usually be sufficient and ensures that your future boss is impressed about your efforts to integrate yourself into Taiwanese culture. After all, a main component of whether or not you are getting hired by the company is always the personal impression the interviewer obtains of you. Prosper also mentioned that expanding your local circle of friends in Taiwan represents a useful source of information regarding working opportunities. That is, most certainly locals know best when it comes to open positions available.

After having been hired, it is quite natural to experience a few differences between how things are being done in Taiwan and your home country. Our interviewee; for instance, brought up that the work pace in Taiwan tends to be extremely quick and efficient. That is, newly made decisions will be implemented the very second they have been made and no assignment is postponed. When comparing this with his working experience in Burkina Faso, Prosper pointed out that “in Africa we do have time, and we take our time”.

Though the working style may be different, it is important not to distance yourself from your colleagues or to see yourself as different from the rest. Instead, be open, humble, and be willing to listen and learn from your co-workers. In fact, according to Prosper’s experience, Taiwanese people are ready to help and teach you with great patience and passion as long as you are willing to listen.

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By now, Prosper has been working for a Taiwanese company that certifies electronics for different markets for more than 4 years. Yet, despite working and travelling mostly within the rising and continuously developing African continent, he never lost his connection to Taiwan and the people in the Taipei headquarter.

Prosper highlighted that it is the personal relationship that matters. That is, since some of the companies will actually send you back to your home country to work there relatively independently, your employer has to trust you thoroughly. Thus, he recommends to try to find a job in Taiwan while you are still on the island, instead of when having returned to your home country. This is based on the notion that the picture that the interviewer may develops of you after a face-to-face interaction and the level of trust being generated tends to be a lot more positive and higher than the one you can create by sending out your résumé via email.

Lastly, Prosper raised the notion that every international student that seeks employment in Taiwan should ask themselves why the company should hire them specifically? What makes you special and valuable for the company? Once, you have an answer to this question, go on and draw on those characteristics and ultimately excel.

Interviewer/Author: Frank Chang/Christian Schoppmeyer

The International Master’s Program in International Studies (IMPIS)

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This master’s program primarily surrounds its discussions and research activities on aspects related to International Relations and Politics. While you will be thoroughly equipped with knowledge on IR theories and the International Political Economy, you will not fall short on opportunities to apply the theoretical knowledge gained on actual and practical cases in classes such as “Topics in International Security”. You will even frequently slip into the role of a diplomat in the course on “Strategic Communication & Cultural Diplomacy”, while also being able to question the invited actual diplomats on their experiences in the field.

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Other areas covered are international development and international conflict management. You do have the opportunities to dig into development studies and the work of foreign aid organizations, or to set your research interest in the sphere of human rights or democratization instead. Also, while IR theories generally focus on the big picture, IMPIS also offers country/region specific classes on China, Russia, or Southeast Asia; for instance, in order to explore their respective foreign and domestic policies or regional existing problems and cooperations respectively, in greater detail.

Inevitable, as we are located in Taiwan, naturally cross-strait relations certainly represents yet another interesting issue to explore. Thus, it seems like the most difficult aspect for any interested student to decide will be to only pick out a single topic for their respective thesis.

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Apart from that, given to its program size (roughly 30 new master’s students per year) and the various cultural backgrounds of its students, IMPIS tends to be one of the most tight-knit and family-like programs in this university. You may not only get to meet classmates from all over the world, but may also expect to make life-long friends on the way to your post-graduate degree.

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In case you would like to know more about the International Master’s Program in International Studies (IMPIS), please refer to the following page: impis.nccu.edu.tw/main.php

 

The International Master’s Program of Applied Economics and Social Development (IMES)

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The IMES program at NCCU represents the very first fully English-taught program in studies of applied economics in Taiwan and enables its students to accurately analyze public policy and social development by means of economic reasoning and statistical methods. Quite similar to other International Master’s Programs at NCCU, IMES offers a number of different disciplinary tracks, namely: Social Security and Welfare, Economic Analysis and Policy Evaluation, and Environment and Resources. While courses such as applied microeconomics and applied macroeconomics; for example, are required for every IMES student.

During your course of study and due to the breadth and flexibility of classes, you are free to focus on aspects such as non-profit organizations, health or environmental economics, or even international finance and trade policies. Your options also range from highly technically-oriented classes in statistics or urban economics to courses with a more political science focus.

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Another characteristic of IMES are the various cultural backgrounds present among the program’s student body and the open directive. That is to say, IMES’s directive board is easily approachable and truly open about its students’ suggestions. Thus, allowing you to shape your program in a way that it really facilitates your personal academic needs.

If you are interested in the IMES Program, please click here for further information.

Where to shop in Taipei (malls & night market)

Taiwan is well known for the exciting night markets dotted around the city. But the sheer number of amazing shopping spots can make it challenging to determine exactly where to go for shopping. We have sourced out some of the greatest places that we think you should go in order to find the best shopping spots in Taipei. Read on to learn more!

1. Taipei 101

A Taipei landmark and tourist attraction that is also one of the world’s tallest skyscrapers. It dominates the skyline and also provides shoppers with a convenient place to shop to their hearts’ content.

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Inside are many of the world’s top luxury brands, such as Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior. For eating, the food courts downstairs have some excellent grub on offer, and the Starbucks on the 35th floor offers some amazing views of the city below.

How to get to 101 Taipei from NCCU:   Take bus Green 1, Brown 18

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Cinema in Taipei

Cinema is a popular leisure activity in Taiwan, and there are many movie theaters in Taipei showing recent, international movies. Most films are shown in their original language with Chinese subtitles, and in some cases with English subtitles as well. Children’s films, however, are generally dubbed into Chinese.

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Some of the main cinemas in Taipei can be found below. Tickets can be booked through the websites of the individual cinemas (Most of the cinema website in Chinese).

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