Taichung Airport (臺中航空站, Taizhong Hangkong Zhan, code RMQ) is the only airport of Taichung City.
It is located about 15 kilometers north-west of the city center. It comprises two terminals, Terminal 1 (domestic) and Terminal 2 (international).
Taichung Airport is the third international airport in Taiwan, after Taoyuan and Kaohsiung. It serves mostly regional international routes to China, Hong Kong and Macau. There are also routes to Korea (Seoul-Incheon, Muan), Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi) and Japan (Okinawa, Oita). The focus in the new year is to attract Asian budget airlines, so during 2017, new lines will be added (to Bangkok, etc.).
Taichung International Airport serves also 4 domestic routes, to Taiwan offshore islands (Magong-Penghu, Jinmen, Matsu) and to Hualien.
Flying to/from Taichung Airport: pros and cons
If you travel to Taichung from abroad, you will have the choice between flying directly to Taichung Airport or, instead, flying to Taoyuan (Taipei) Airport and then reach Taichung City by land. These are some facts to consider about each choice:
- Taichung Airport is especially useful if you fly from/to Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macao. There are about 30 destinations to the Greater China area from Taichung.
- It can also be of use if you fly trough the hub of Hong Kong Airport (from Europe to Taichung, for example). There are about 8-9 flights per day from Hong Kong to Taichung.
- Taoyuan Airport is the main airport in Taiwan, by far. There are plenty of international flights, including direct flights to Europe, America, Japan and all Asia.
- The distance between Taoyuan Airport and Taichung is about 140km. Between Taichung Airport and the city center there are 15km, instead.
- It takes about 1.30 (taxi and then high speed railway) to 2.30 hrs (bus) to travel from Taoyuan International Airport to Taichung, by high speed railway, taxi or bus. The cost ranges from 230-300NTD (bus) to 570-840NTD (shuttle bus + high speed railway) to 3500-4500NTD (taxi all the way to Taichung – click here to check prices with a licensed airport transfer service operating in Taiwan).
- Most of time there is no problem to get from Taoyuan International Airport to Taichung. But, on weekends and, especially, during national holidays, highways will be jammed and high speed trains can be fully booked.
- The transit time from Taichung Airport to the city is about 20-50 minutes with a taxi, depending on traffic conditions. Fares range 350-700NTD for most destinations in Inner Taichung.
What you can find in Taichung Airport
The airport is new, it has been built between the years 2003-2004 (domestic terminal) and 2008-2012 (international terminal). It provides all the services required for an international airport, even if a small one.
- Customs (Tax Refunds)
- Currency exchange (06-23.00 hrs) and ATM
- Visitor Information Center (08.00-21.00 hrs)
- Service Counter (SIM cards, Pocket Wifi, Bus Cards and Bus Info)
- Car Rental
- Mobile Phones Charging Stations
- Baggage Lockers
- Food (light meals), both in the arrival and transit areas.
- Duty Free
How to get from Taichung Airport to Taichung City
Since the airport is so close to the city, this may your best (and easiest) option. A taxi will costs between 350 and 700NTD for most of the places in Taichung. Don’t forget to print out the Chinese address of your destination to show to the taxi driver. Not many taxi drivers in Taichung speak any English. All taxis in Taiwan charge by the meter. Tips are not required.
There is not any special bus service between the airport and the city. Taichung airport is only served by regular city buses. A kiosk in the arrival area provides information (in English) about bus routes from the airport. You can also buy I-Pass and EasyCards for 100 TWD (bus in Taichung are free up to 10km if you have any of these cards). More info here about the several bus routes serving the airport.
How to Get from Taichung Airport to Sun Moon Lake
Bus #6670 from Nantou Bus company runs frequently every day from Taichung to Sun Moon Lake (see timetable). Only one run per day, at 15:10hrs, leave from the airport and will reach Sun Moon Lake in 2 hours. During the rest of the day, you will have to reach Taichung HSR station by city bus #156 to board the bus #6670 mentioned above.
If instead you need an English speaking driver, licensed and insured, waiting for you at the arrivals, to drive you to your specific destination or hired by the hour, you will need a professional service such as Blacklane. I have not tried them yet, but their prices seem interesting – about 33 USD for a transfer to Taichung downtown, 110 USD to QingJing Farm, 90 USD from Taichung Airport to Sun Moon Lake. Check their services.
Taichung Airport Hotels
There are no hotels in the immediate vicinity of the airport.
If you want to stay in a good hotel, where you can reach Taichung Ching Chuan Kang Airport in the shortest possible time, we recommend the following ones:
- Windsor Hotel: A solid 5 stars business hotel, with swimming pool, gym, sauna, 4 restaurants. Close to shopping and business districts, highway, expressway and HSR station. About 15 minutes drive from the airport. Read reviews on Tripadvisor. Book Windsor Hotel on Agoda.
- Taichung Harbor Hotel: Good 4 stars hotel in the coastal area. Far from city center and nights markets but relatively close to Gaomei Wetlands. About 15 minutes drive from the airport, along roads normally not affected by traffic jams. Check on Tripadvisor. Book on Agoda.
- Hotel Reve: This affordable 3.5 stars is the closest to the airport, that is at only 7km. Good reviews from Tripadvisor. 10 minutes drive to the airport. It is also 7 km from Fengjia Night Market (bus#63, taxi 200 NTD). Book on Agoda.