I was on vacation last week to Taiwan, which explains the lack of posts. During my trip, I took a mental note of how much things cost in Taiwan so that I can calculate how much I need to retire there. In fact Taiwan is going to be my first stop after retirement as my wife and I intend to stay there for 3 months to savor all the good food and beautiful scenery.
Here is a rundown of the basic living cost in Taiwan:
Food: Very cheap. I can literally eat a meal for less than SGD1.50 in their night market. In particular, there is a dish called “lu rou fan” that cost less than a dollar. It is delicious and can absolutely fill your stomach. Other famous Taiwan dishes such as oyster noodle and fired chicken chop costs between SGD2 to SGD2.50.
Transport: Their subway system is clean and affordable. For around SGD1 to SGD1.50, I can probably get to a lot of places in Taipei. Their train fares for longer route is also reasonable. A ticket to Gao Xiong from Taipei will cost you less than SGD50. Their taxi fares are 30 to 40% cheaper than Singapore as well.
Clothing: There is wholesaler market in the city of Taipei called “wu fen pu”. In this market, you can get dresses for as cheap as SGD5 although the average is around SGD15. Still, it is cheap to shop here and you never worry about overspending your budget.
There are only 2 big ticket items I am not sure about. One is the price of housing and the other is the cost of buying a car. The latter is optional since you can use their subway to get to pretty much anywhere. Housing will be an issue but I don’t expect it be higher than Singapore.
All in all, I expect to be able to survive in Taiwan for less than SGD1500 per month per person, including rental.
- Food: SGD150 (SGD5*30)
- Transport: SGD90 (SGD3*30)
- Entertainment: SGD200
- Rental: SGD1000
Taiwan and Taipei in particular is a pretty good place to be after my retirement. My wife and I enjoyed our stay there but there is so much more we want to see and eat. Hopefully, prices will not be high after a couple of years, which is when I am expected to retire.