Payments in Taiwan

PChome 24h, one of the top e-commerce sites in Taiwan accept following payment methods:

  • ATM transfer
  • Debit cards
  • Credit cards (with splitted payment options from 31 banks)
    • VISA
    • Mastercard
    • JCB
    • AMEX
  • Apple Pay (Finger)
  • Google Pay
  • Samsung Pay (Eye, Finger, PIN)
  • LINE Pay (Scan QR)
  • Smart Pay by (almost all) banks
  • Cash on Convenience Stores’s Kiosk (7-Eleven ibon)
  • Cash on Convenience Stores (7-Eleven, FamilyMart, OK, and Hi-Life)
  • Cash on Delivery (by shipping companies: 黑貓, Lalamove)
  • UnionPay

To build a solution, a service provider collaborates with Ministry of Finance, work with the Ministry of Finance involves paperworks and pass some requirements. Then Ministry of Finance will approve your service, you are allowed to run a Payment Service Provider.

The bank also has API for corporate customers that we could build abstractions:

  • 台新銀行
  • 永豐銀行

Each company/legal person in Taiwan has a unified identified number (8 digit number, 100 million possible merchants, can lookup on The invoice in Taiwan must have this number printed on it, hence the name Unified/Uniform Invoice.

Government charges 5% sales tax (營業稅) and sales income tax (17%) based on sales tax portion. For $10M, sales tax is 10M*5%=500K, and sales income tax is 10M*5%*17% = 85k, total 585K (5.85% total).

Usually at Checkout, the customer can choose to file the invoice under company, under one’s own, or donate to well-known charity.

To operate a payment service in Taiwan, Stripe needs to implement invoices for Merchant’s customers who pay through Stripe and the fee Stripe charges the merchant also needs invoice.

Part of the reason why is that is because all these providers sell invoices. The merchant who sells online often need to issue e-invoice, and it’s troublesome to manage invoice operations (as described before) on their own, so instead they would buy e-invoices from service provider. A typical price tier service provider offers is $15 for 100 invoices per month.

  1. Figure out which pay has most customers
  2. Many paperworks, API documents are in Chinese
  3. Ministry of Finance’s weird API interface / responses
  4. Bank’s weird API interface / responses
  5. COD and intergrate shipping companies
  6. Refund and invoice
  7. Support address of Taiwan at Checkout
  8. Support date/time of Taiwan at Checkout
  9. Naming: Stripe Taiwan is a clothing company founded in Japan and Taiwan
  10. Customer who forgot to enter unified number at Checkout
  11. [Paypal once operated in Taiwan and left (legal complications)]

  • Deep dive into all existing payment providers
  • Find out through interviewing real users to understand the distribution of pay users (ideas: government’s open data, pay some organizations)
  • Ask Legal team to help resolve with Stripe Taiwan name conflict
  • Find people who want to study the paperwork and conclude into documents from Global APAC team for the rest of the company
  • Chat with local experienced developers in Taiwan
  • Write abstractions for weird API interfaces / responses
  • Talk to shipping companies to figure out COD

I don’t have all answers and we could figure out the minimum it takes to launch then fix along the way.

I think entering Taiwan will open a wide range of areas that Stripe could be improved.

  • Host developer events in Taiwan (understand situation, complications, ask questions, gather answers)
  • Get Stripe Payments to work in Taiwan (Private Beta)
  • Integrate working Stripe Payment with Stripe Terminal
  • Promote Stripe Payments and Terminal in Taiwan
    Stripe now works in Taiwan. Use Stripe to sell overseas and accepts payments from everywhere!