Probably the friendliest taxi drivers in the world. With genuinely polite and caring cabbies, taxis in Taipei are easy to hail (and hence there is the relative issue of overabundance), easy to call, technologically advanced (most take credit cards / easycard / and equipped with GPS), and often even take the initiative to give you a discount (for example, if the meter jumps just before the taxi stops, often the cab driver will tell you to pay the lesser fare right before)
Most cabbies in Hong Kong do not utter a single word. No greeting, no goodbye, they don’t even bother reporting the fare. They whizz around like crazy and automatically round up your fare to the nearest single number.
MRT – Badly designed trains and network, plus a climate too hot for walking in the summer make traveling by public transport in Taipei a nightmare. Which is why in Taipei I buy sunhats and use parasols. Not cool.
Hong Kong though, boasts probably one of the best underground system in the world. Super efficient and user-friendly.
Buses – Taipei has some of the most relentlessly polite drivers I’ve seen. They greet every passenger and report every stop. They even remind you to offer your seat to those in need.
Why is Taipei raining so much, yet so hot, and so humid I have to buy rainboots at times, and use a handerchief and parasol at others?
Just love the book-reading culture of Taipei. Every time I walk into Eslite I feel a new boost of energy that comes from the sight of a bustling, healthy book-reading generation huddled around books that are not about sex, violence or gossip but literature, in its purest form. Try experiencing this, then head to Hong Kong’s annual book fair.
For all its cultural sophistication, Taiwan is, however, home to perhaps the crappiest local media around. The newspapers and TV stations report little useful information and instead are extremely biased and peripheral. Tabloid-style reigns. Why would I want to see an interview of a model who decided to become an air hostess and how much she gets paid?
On the contrary, though HK people don’t like much to read, the city is blessed with a few very good newspapers serious about their role and unbiased.
Like the above, the standard of local TV series production, since the rise of F4 and 流星花園， has fallen hard. Think TVB drama is bad? Wait until you see the Taiwanese one. You’ll miss your 九姑娘 (character from TVB drama 巾幗梟雄之義海豪情 played by 鄧萃雯, one the best shows ever)， badly.
On the contrary, variety shows in Taiwan are very entertaining indeed. Perhaps the reason for this comes from the Taiwanese person’s relaxed and candid demeanour, a quality I believe makes for genuine, good-natured humour.
Hong Kongers, on the other hand, wear the kind of humour that finds solace in putting people down.