What It’s Like To Actually Travel To Taiwan (Some People Do It Because They Say It’s Impossible)

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About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I’m not sure why there are quotation marks around the word homophonic except to inspire doubt. Given the slurs, actions, and fact that the person had to be arrested, I’d say that there’s not much doubt.

  2. Teams is fine. If you’re on an Office environment, its integration with the rest of the O365 suite is really convenient.

  3. 1. Underage drinking is extremely prevalent. It’s probably the second most common everyday transgression in this country after speeding. The illegality of these two acts is a major contributor to inequality in America. Rich people get these citations dismissed and get on with life making absolutely no changes. Poor people may have to empty their life savings to solve the same problem. Shame on America for perpetuating this situation. It’s time we acknowledge the reality of life, repeal age limits on alcohol, and remove penalties for speeding, convert existing limits to advisory speeds and only stop/cite/arrest people whose driving is visibly unsafe – speed being just one of many factors.

    2. While we read the story about the homophobe let’s please keep in mind that a customer somebody who pays for service. Verbal slurs are harmless and the small ice cubes used in drinks do not cause injury. That’s laughable. If you are somebody who cannot tolerate this “abuse” then get out of the service industry, learn a skill and get a job where you do not have to face customers. Some of them are like this. Complaining about it is selfish and unproductive.

  4. “The American Airlines flight attendants union is moving to a Microsoft Teams phone system and literally warning that it may not work. I do not know anyone who likes Teams for anything.”

    That is standard IT language for when doing a mass cutover from one system to another there may be difficulties so we are covering our own butts. Teams is more than fine for most organizations, it’s not great for anything but its good at lots of things.


  5. Uh, Teams is fantastic for actually doing work across the suite of Microsoft applications and integration with Sharepoint. I have “live” documents that people from multiple organizations can all work on at the same time. Honestly, if they’d just put an Outlook tab on Teams, it’s the only application I’d need besides Bluebeam.

  6. The blog about Taiwan was accurate. They are very efficient and proactive concerning the virus. The people there are extremely kind and respectful. It’s a beautiful country. Masks are mandated for everyone, everywhere. A good deal of them wore them outdoors prior to the pandemic. This was a way of life because of their proximity to China, and China’s terrible air pollution. My son and his family have lived there for 15 yrs. During my pre-pandemic visit, I thoroughly enjoyed it. At that time, it was easy to be admitted, in part because of our visa agreements with them. In contrast, my son is trying to come back to the states, but getting a green card for his wife has been a nightmare. Our State Dept is making terrible demands that would make anyone feel like a criminal. My son holds a highly respected job and has been married to a Taiwanese woman for almost 12 yrs. Every document submitted has been ruled as suspect, including their passports, even though my son’s was issued from the US. He has now been forced to hire an immigration attorney. The are a very respectable couple with 8 yr old twins. The whole thing is a crappy way to treat an American citizen and his wife.

  7. @Max, for the large majority of the last 125 years it has been governed separately from China.

  8. Diana rolled up American exceptionalism, entitlement, and white supremacy into a single comment. Damn impressive.

    – Taiwan is a part of China, as per our own diplomatic norms, but Diana has decided to unilaterally reject this, a common behavior in white American culture to simply reject the norms you don’t like. (POC and minorities don’t have this luxury because when they fall “out of line” whites put them “back in their place.”)

    – Why has Diana’s son married a Chinese woman? There is a severe imbalance in white-Asian interracial relationships. Will Diana’s daughter marry a Chinese man? I think not. Why not? Could it be that American culture has emasculated Asian men for centuries while putting Asian women on a pedestal? There’s white supremacy for ya. Oh, and if the Chinese are such “kind” people who have cultivated a “beautiful” country, Diana, why can’t your son give back, return his wife to the Asian dating pool, and find a White woman to marry? Is it because Diana instilled in her children her own values to take, but not to give? American exceptionalism!

    – Diana’s son is having trouble emigrating back to the US with a frickin’ US passport ruled as suspect. What’s the other side of the story here, Diana? Does anybody who hold a “highly respected job” actually describe it as such? Most of the top respected people I know are extremely humble and would never describe their profession in such lofty words. On the other hand, a lying POS car salesman could be a “dealer principal.” LMAO!

    – I think even racist supremacist white Americans understand that Xi Jinping is going to be ruling over present-day Americans, so y’all better divest bitcoin, xue yi dian zhong wen, and push Californians to keep algebra 2 and calculus in the curriculum. Y’all know the Chinese despite their putative “air pollution” are coding up Newton-Raphson optimizers in preschool math?

  9. The piece on Taiwan was so well written it was a pleasure to read. If this author ever writes a history of the regulation of font sizes in food packaging I will be sure to read it.

    @racist-ayenus, where does Diana say that she or her son is white? Or do you just assume that they are white because you (and David Duke) bitterly cling to your belief that the US is a “white nation”.

  10. Microsoft Teams, Sharepoint & OneDrive all suck.

    It’s good to see UA refresh the 764 cabin but it’s time for a new business class seat from United.

  11. I just completed my self health monitoring phase in Taiwan. The text messages have finally stopped. I disagree with this author’s take on the quarantine: although everyone was nice and polite, the entire process has just become totally pointless. The country is now getting 5000 cases per day. Time to open up and live with the virus like every country should have done from the beginning.

  12. The same people who recognize Taiwan as a separate country are the same who recognize Ukraine as a separate country. They are fabricated countries created by western, white countries through economic warfare. Just like hawaii and puerto rico in the US.

  13. Regarding teams, I agree that as a virtual meeting place it’s no worse than Webex or Zoom. (OK, it’s better than Webex.) But the Orwellian employee-monitoring … “move your mouse every 5 minutes or we’ll tell your supervisor you’re slacking” … that’s unfun.

  14. @Don – Please go to Taiwan and tell every Taiwanese person you meet how they don’t live in a real country and that it only exists because of economic warfare from the West. You’ll get one of three reactions:

    1. Utter confusion
    2. Polite smiling and nodding, while laughing on the inside over what a moron you are.
    3. Laughing to your face over what a moron you are.

  15. Taipei Covid mechanisms sounds like OVERKILL and lack of freedom and human rights and it is still not helping the spread,,… NOT WORKING even with these SEVERE measures ????? Back to the drawing board… maybe someone will really study this virus and get to the point of how to fight and control it finally after over 2 years of this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Gary,

    Do you have a problem with CCP members posing as readers to make racist comments? Because it seems that is the case…

  17. Fascinating blog about Taiwan Gary. We had a similar experience coming and going to the Philippines during the pandemic esp when I tested positive for Covid despite being fully vaccinated. It was surreal!

    Ignore the haters whom I am sure will post here, stating that you had no business traveling ….. life is not worth living unless you take some chances and too short to stay locked up for years

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