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Studying chinese in Hsinchu, Taiwan and what visa to get?


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Hi, Can I please get some advice? We are going to Taiwan in Nov, staying with friends in Hsinchu. We (hubby, and 2 kids 7 and 10 yr) plan to stay for a year for all of us to learn Chinese. But found out that on a visitors visa, can only stay for 2 months at a time. We spoke to Teco here in Australia, maybe can get a multiple entry visa, but still only can stay max 60 days at a time. We explored option of a student visa for both hubby and I but our kids apparently still only gets the visitor visa, so no point in getting the student visa.

So, any advice welcome on how we can stay longer than 2 months? We wanted to find out, if we get to Hsinchu in Nov, then only go and register for classes either at the Chinese Language Center of National Chiao Tung University (NCTU), and the Taipei Language Institute (can anyone recommend other learning centres in Hsinchu?) - is it advisable to do this or should we already be contacting these institutions now to obtain places to avoid not being able to enroll in Nov because classes are full?

Also, for our kids, we plan on putting them in a nearby local school plus get a private Chinese tutor for all of us as well. Any advice on good schools or summer schools? How to find a Chinese tutor?

Also we thought of learning Chinese online via skype but there are so many options out there? Can someone recommend easy online lessons or via skype for kids and for adults?

Also, if we have to do visa runs, which airlines have the cheapest airfares to go to either Malaysia/Singapore or Korea? Maybe China (but we’d need to get a visa)

Thanks for your help.

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I don't know of any way to be able to stay in the country longer than 2 months without having either a student visa or a work visa, but I could be wrong. Most language centers in Taiwan allow you to register right up until the first week of class, but if you're worried about it you might want to get in touch with the school.

As far as leaving Taiwan for a visa run, I've never done it so take this with a grain of salt. It's probably cheapest to go to the Philippines, but I know a lot of people go to Hong Kong, and there may be a reason for that. Singapore can also be very cheap.

All in all though, you'll be better off asking these kinds of questions at Forumosa. It's specifically for Taiwan, and there are a lot of knowledgeable people there.

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Hsinchu is a very boring town, I used to live there but compared to some rural places in China, at least the general conditions are better. I hope you won't get bored, there are few recreations in this place.

You can do a visa run to Hong Kong, probably not to mainland China because as a foreigner you need to get a separate visa. You may go to Thailand, a large foreign community lives there.

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