Ready to purchase your vehicle in Taiwan

Whether you are driving along the coast on Provincial Highway #11 or driving through the winding mountain on Provincial Highway #9, it’s super easy to drive around in Taitung with its wide open roads everywhere. Once you’ve decided to take residence in Taitung, having your own vehicle might be the best way to explore all that Taitung has to offer. Here are some helpful tips for when you are ready to purchase your vehicle:

Can I buy a car and drive in Taitung?

  • Of course you can!
  • You can choose to buy either a car or a scooter with the latter being the more mobile option and is a more common form of vehicle for locals. If you can not purchase the vehicle in full cash and need to take out a loan with the bank, then you will need a Cosigner with Taiwan Nationals.
  • As long as you have a valid international driver’s license, you can drive anywhere in Taiwan.
  • If you plan to stay for a maximum time of three months, you could be driving in Taiwan with an international license, which was issued in your home country.
  • If you plan to stay in Taiwan for more than 1 year, or you don’t have an International Driver’s Permit (or it’s not recognized officially by Taiwan) you can apply for a local Obtaining a Taiwanese Drivers License.

Don’t have a driver’s license and want to apply for a local Obtaining a Taiwanese Drivers License?

You need to be at least 18 years old and submit the following:

  • Proof of stay or residence for more than 6 months, such as alien residence permit or national ID card
  • Three 1-inch half-length color photos taken within the last 2 years
  • Health examination certificate (for driving test)
  • Excluding the time for the submission of documents, the application process is roughly the same as that of ordinary Taiwanese nationals.

For more information: Taiwan Highway Administration

Procedure for Buying a New Car

Bring your license plate with a cheerful mood to a car dealer, and choose your favorite car, so that you can drive in Taitung!

Step 1:

Pay for the car. You can choose to pay a deposit, or buy a car with a mortgage. To buy a car with a mortgage, you need to provide ID card/residence certificate, copy of bank book, housing certificate, income certificate, two 1-inch photos (married couples need to also provide spouse’s ID card and marriage certificate) 

Step 2:

Keep the car purchase invoice, car factory qualification certificate, and ID card and affix the industrial and commercial verification seal to the automobile trading market in each district.

Step 3:

Apply for car insurance, which must be prepared before obtaining the license. Buying a new car also requires third party liability insurance be secured.

Step 4:

Pay the vehicle purchase surcharge. This is done at the Vehicle Purchase Surcharge Collection Management Office of the Transportation Bureau. The surcharge for domestically-produced cars is 10% of the car model, whereas the surcharge for imported cars is 10% of the duty-paid fee.

Step 5:

Pay the vehicle and vessel usage fee. This is done at the local tax bureau. You may also complete this procedure at the car dealership.

Step 6:

To apply for a mobile permit, head to the Traffic Police Corps of any county or city, or any relevant institution of the automobile trading market. This procedure must be completed before the license is obtained.

Step 7:

Bring the car owner’s ID card, the car purchase invoice with the industrial and commercial verification seal, the vehicle qualification certificate and car ID card for vehicle inspection. Your new car must pass the inspection at the new car inspection center before it can be licensed.

Step 8:

Go through the licensing procedures and get the license from the vehicle management of any county or city within five working days after completion of the vehicle inspection. Licensing needs to be handled by the owner, and no one else can do it for him or her.

Procedure for Buying a Used Car

If you wish to buy a second-hand car, we suggest you find a Taiwanese friend to accompany you, that way you can get a few comparisons and make sure there are no misunderstandings!

After you have closed the deal with the seller, you need to prepare the following documents to transfer the vehicle’s ownership:

  • Two copies of the application form for transfer of registration of the vehicle or scooter
  • The registration form for a new license of the original car (*this is only if you want to change your license plate # and this step is also exempt for scooters).
  • The vehicle’s certificate of title
  • Your ID as well as the seller’s ID
  • Both you and the seller’s seals or signature
  • A compulsory automobile liability insurance certificate that is insured under your name (the new owner), and must be valid for more than 30 days.
  • The former owner of the car must first settle any outstanding fees, such as the vehicle license tax, fuel fee or traffic fines for the current year (January 1 to December 31) and the previous year.
  • Transfer fee: NT$ 200 for cars, and NT$ 150 for scooters

Vehicle Inspection

Taiwan Law stipulates that car owners must take their cars in for inspections at DMV regularly

For new cars: Exempt from inspection within 5 years.

Used cars: Inspections must then take place once a year from the 6th to 10th year of operation

Inspections are required every six months for cars older than 10 years.