Taichung bus network is wide and well laid out. It improved a lot in the last few years. Nowadays, by bus, you can get pretty much everywhere in Taichung City.
Also, the bus in Taichung is free up to 10 km ride. So it is very convenient. Most of times you will ride for free.
On the other side, traveling in Taichung by bus is often slow and time consuming. Buses have to share the same road with the crazy Taichung traffic (except in part of Taiwan Boulevard, where buses have a dedicated traffic lane).
So too many Taichung people still have to rely on their car or scooter, especially if they are in a hurry.
How to Travel in Taichung by Bus
Taichung bus system is very easy to use, even for a foreigner that cannot speak or read Chinese.
- You must have an Easy Card (悠遊卡, yōuyóu kǎ) or an I-Pass Card. You can buy or recharge them at any convenience store (7/11, Family Mart, Hi-life, etc..) and in Taichung International Airport. An Easy Card costs a minimum of 200NTD (minimum deposit is 100NTD). The remaining balance, including the deposit, will be entirely refunded upon request. These cards can be used also for Taipei, Kaohsiung, Tainan public transport.
- Many bus stops are on request. So, when in doubt, just wave your hand to the approaching bus for the driver to see you. If instead you want to get off, press the request stop button closest to you. The coming stops will be announced, often in English too.
- You can enter and exit the bus at any door. Just remember to hold the card close to the scanner, once you enter the bus and when you leave it. The small screen on the top of the scanner will flash a green light and show you the balance on the card.
This is how to ride a bus in Taichung, in a nutshell. But … where to know which bus to take, at which stop to get off? Lets see below!
Taichung Bus – How to Navigate
Several websites and apps can help you to plan your bus trip.
- First of all have a look at this website, Taichung Guide. For each place (attraction, hotels etc), we provide a list of the bus routes available to reach it and, also, an interactive map (based on Google Maps). If you click on the map icon, a popup window will appear. Click on Directions To, input your departure point or destination, then press Get Directions. Pressing the icon with the bus (Public Transport) you will get a list of the best itineraries (with bus routes number and/or trains), all in real time.
- Wikipedia has an English page with a summary of bus lines in Taichung. This page, that looks updated, is especially useful to know the frequency (how many buses per day/per hour) of each single route.
- Taichung government offers an interactive page in Chinese. The map is very useful to know routes (and bus stops) of each line. There is also a page in English. This English page is updated in real time (each route shows how many minutes to the next bus for each stop) but there is no map.
- You can also use one of the free app for Android/IOS on your phone. We use Bus Tracker Taichung, which has the English language option.
Taichung Bus Tips
Bus routes #300 to #308 connect Taichung City Center (Taichung Main Station) to different locations on the coastal line. From Wuquan Road to Providence University they run along Taiwan Boulevard on the inner dedicated bus lane (former BRT Blue Line).
On this section buses are very frequent and fast, they are the best option if your destination is along Taiwan Boulevard.