What is the visa you need to teach in Taiwan?
If you want to work legally and full time in Taiwan, you will need to get an ARC.(Alien Resident Card). This can be obtained after you have been legally hired and approved to work at a legal school in Taiwan. However, the government will only grant you an ARC if you have a Visitor Visa, not a landing visa. However, you can change your visa. Read how to do that in the article How To Change Your Visa.
An Alien Resident Card allows a foreigner teacher to work at up to two different establishments at the same time. The company that sponsors your ARC is listed on the card itself. ARCs last one year and teachers need to reapply annually if they want to stay.
The Best Visa You Need To Teach in Taiwan
When you arrive in Taiwan, you can arrive via a landing visa and change it to a visitor visa if you are hired by a school/company.
If you arrive on a landing visa, you most likely won’t be able to directly change into an ARC.
There are 2 reasons for this…
- You wont have enough time. The hiring and ARC approval process can take 10-14 days once all your paperwork is sent in. This does not include the time you need to find a job.
- The government may not view your landing visa as a transferable one. In this case, you will need to leave Taiwan and get a visitor visa at a TECRO office like in Hong Kong.
Hired in Taiwan But Can’t Get a Visitor Visa
If you are hired in Taiwan, but your visa can’t be transferred, you will need to make a quick trip to Hong Kong TECRO office with a letter from your employer (stamped with a chop) saying that you have been hired. In addition, you will need a letter from Foreign Affairs confirming this. Your new employer should have this letter.
Your employer should help you get this together. Hong Kong will then give you a standard visitor visa that is transferable. You can then return to Taiwan and continue the ARC process. This whole process in Hong Kong takes one day if you get there early. You can get to the Hong Kong office in the morning and pick it up in the afternoon.
You Don’t Have An ARC
If you want to work illegally in Taiwan, you can do it on a standard visitor visa or student visa. There are still short timers who come to Taiwan to earn a little money by subbing or filling in for short term jobs. These salaries are paid in cash.
Be aware, however, that if you are caught teaching illegally in a random check, you will be immediately expatriated and not allowed back into the country for 1-5 years. The school you are also teaching at is taking a risk hiring you as well. If caught with illegal workers, they will also be heavily fined and could lose their license.