Kaohsiung is an English-friendly city. Mandarin is the official language in Taiwan, though other dialects are also spoken. The most commonly used foreign language is English, spoken in all major hotels and restaurants, taxi drivers, however, generally only speak Mandarin or Taiwanese.
The average annual rainfall is 1750mm. The rainy season lasts from May to October. The average temperature is 24.4°C. July is the warmest month and January is the coldest. There is little difference between daytime and nighttime temperatures. The weather report of Taiwan can be found at the website of Central Weather Bureau: http://www.cwb.gov.tw
Taiwan is eight hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and does not practice daylight saving time during summer. Local time in Taiwan and the time difference from your home country can be found via this link: http://www.worldtimeserver.com
Electricity Power Supply
The utility power supply used in Taiwan is 110 volts/60 Hz. Appliances from Europe, Australia or South-East Asia will require an adaptor and/or transformer.
Taiwan's currency is the New Taiwan Dollar (NT$). Bill denominations are NT$2,000, NT$1,000, NT$500, NT$200, and NT$100. Coin denominations are NT$1, NT$5, NT$10, NT$20, and NT$50. The exchange rate is around NT$30 to US$1. Foreign currencies can be exchanged at the airport upon arrival, or at government-authorized banks, tourist hotels, and department stores. Please retain the currency exchange receipt to exchange unused NT Dollars back to original currency. Traveler's checks in major currencies may be cashed at some tourist-oriented businesses and for customs at most international tourist hotels.
Major credit cards are accepted by hotels, department stores, airlines, most stores and restaurants. Cash can be withdrawn from the ATM which has the same logo on your cards. Cash is generally preferred in most places in Taiwan.
A single local call from a public phone costs NT$1 for 3 minutes with additional coins insertion for continuing service. If needed, the overseas operator may be reached by dialing "100". Direct international call is available from some phones, after dialing the prefix "002". Rate for direct international calls is charged every six seconds.
Personal items are free of duty. Visitors over 20 years old may bring in, duty free, 200 cigarettes or 25 cigars or 0.5 kg of tobacco, one bottle of liquor and one used camera. Gold cannot be exported without a permit issued by the Ministry of Finance. Passengers arriving with gold and silver and planning to take it out at departure must declare it and leave the items with Customs until they leave Taiwan.