How Safe is Taiwan?
The simple answer is: Very safe. Taiwan is one of the safest destinations in the world for Western tourists. Taiwan’s people hold no political or religious grudges against North Americans, Europeans or people from Hong Kong or Singapore.
Taiwanese society is affluent and wealth disparities aren’t extreme, so crimes of desperation are rare. That said, it pays to take precautions against pickpockets when in a crowd (at a festival, say), and to exercise caution when crossing roads. Also, it’s usually better to hire an experienced local driver if you plan to spend a lot of time in the mountains.
Tourists are still relatively rare, so local people are helpful and welcoming. Unlike some other places in Asia, foreign visitors are still seen as honored guests, rather than chumps who should be separated from their money. Price gouging is almost unknown, and if you leave something valuable in a restaurant or a taxi, there’s a very good chance you’ll get it back.
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