Sending and Receiving Mail in Taiwan(UC)
The Post-Office: Sending Mail in Taiwan is simple if you know a few basic rules. Post-Offices are located conveniently around Taiwan. You'll see trucks and scooter delivery all dressed up to the nines in green and brown. Their system delivers mail three times each day. Red mailboxes are for over-seas, airmail, and express mail. Green boxes are for domestic mail, with local mail heading to the right slot and other mail heading to the left slot. Sending a package to the United States will take approximately one to two weeks. Depending on your preference UPS, Federal Express, and DHL all ship to and from Taiwan. The cost of shipping things from Taiwan is based, as is usually the case, on weight. The exact amount I can't find, but it was incredibly cheap to send things back home, much cheaper than having things sent here to Taiwan.
Addresses: It will be best to include the English and Chinese characters of your current residence when sending letters home.Be advised that while Western addresses run name - address - city - state - zip - country, Chinese addresses run exactly the opposite way. Ask a friend or landlord to write out your address for you or e-mail it to you. If you have a copy of that address, take a picture of it and E-mail your Chinese address home so your relatives can print it out. Be advised that there are many different types of Romanization of English in Taiwan, and that your address may be spelled a number of different ways depending on which is employed. Be advised that there are three-digit city codes that may need to be included. You can use this site, the Taiwan Government site, to find that code for your city. Many foreign post-offices will require this code. While English-only addresses will almost always reach their destination, it has been said that including the Chinese characters will speed up delivery. Please note that I have recently never received a package that was coming here filled with goodies, and it only had an English address on it. For sending mail out of Taiwan, the post-office recommends this format.
Other Services and Oddities: You can also pay your on-time utilities bills (electric, telephone, gas, and water) at the post office. Many post-offices also offer a gifts store with a wide variety of gifts. Many people also trust the post-offices like banks, storing money and buying bonds with the post-offices. A friend of mine recently decided to send some Christmas cards home. He was instructed to pay X amount for the total costs. Later it was discovered that the cards were never sent. He was instructed that if you write inside the cards, it costs more to send. I can't confirm or deny this, but he did have to pay more in the end. Please also investigate what can and can't be sent to Taiwan because of customs issues. I know a friend of mine had her package held up because of cold medicine with Codeine: might be best to take this along with you. Also, a friend could not receive his giant jar of protein because of customs rules. In the end, he had to pay a fine to receive the giant protein jar. Perhaps you can find more information here, at Taiwan Customs Information.
Helpful Page on Post-Office Rules
Amazing Page of All Foreign Countries Postal Systems
USPS Postage Calculator
Unhelpful Taiwan Government Post-Office Main Site (English)
Taiwan City Government Postal Code Locator