Addressing an Envelope in Taiwan – Horizontal

Now that we’ve looked at how to address envelopes in the more traditional vertical style, let’s take a look how to address horizontal envelopes!


As for the horizontal envelopes, the post office yet again gives us some great instructions:


Breaking this down, we get the address and name of the recipient (收件人地址、姓名) in the middle, with the sender’s address and name (寄件人地址、姓名) on the upper right (or even the back!). The zip code is written above the address, and stamp goes on the upper right corner.

It’s pretty much the same style envelope we’re all familiar with, except in the way you order the address, which you may remember from this post.

And the order for writing them:

  • 第1行:郵遞區號 [ yóu​dì​qū​hào ]
  • 第2行:地址 [ dì​zhǐ ]
  • 第3行:姓名或商號名稱
      • 姓名 [ xìng​míng​ ]: name and surname
      • 商號 [ shāng​hào ]: business
      • 名稱 [ míng​chēng ]: name (of a thing or business)

In other words (or in English) it is:

  • First Line: Postal Code
  • Second Line: Address
  • Third Line: Name or Business Name

Note that 第 (dì) is used for ordinal numbers (first, second, third, etc) and 行 (háng) is used for lines or rows.


In this context 行 is always pronounced háng and never xíng!

式樣 (style [ shì​yàng ]​):


Here, too, you’ll notice they also use 啟 (to open [ qǐ ]) next to the recipient’s name and 緘 (to close; to seal [ jiān ]) next to sender’s name. As before, it is more common to see 收 [ shōu ] for “to” and 寄 [ jì ] “from” instead of 啟 and 緘.

And that’s it! I hope this guide was helpful for you. If you have any questions, ask away in the comments below!


Addressing an Envelope in Taiwan – Vertical

Since we’ve got our addresses down, on to envelopes! In Taiwan, there are two ways to write the address on the envelope: the more traditional, vertical, way or the more Western-style horizontal way (all depends on the type of envelope you have and how ambitious you are).

In this post, I’ll be taking a look at how to address a vertical style envelope in Taiwan!

Continue Reading

How the Taiwanese Address System Works

PostOfficeBoxesTaiwanMailing letters is admittedly a long and arduous process, what with the fancy emails and instant messaging these days, but it’s still quite a necessary part of life abroad! In this post we will be looking at the (relatively) easy addressing system in Taiwan!

Continue Reading

Quick Vocab: App Updates

Just a quick little post about some app related Chinese!


修正iOS 5相容性問題:

Corrected iOS5 compatibility issues.

修正(xiū​zhèng​): to revise / to amend / fix

相容 (xiāng​róng​xìng): compatibility

Made up of:
相容 (xiāng​róng): compatible
性 (xìng): -ity

問題 (wèn​tí​): problem / issue


Fixed some known bugs.

修正(xiū​zhèng​): to revise / to amend / fix

部分 (bù​fen​): part
已知 (yǐ​zhī​): known

部分已知bug is a pretty set phrase when talking about fixing known bugs, you can find a lot of results with a quick Google search.

The Piano Guys Go to China (and teach us something about Yin and Yang)

The Piano Guys have quickly become one of my favorite YouTube sensations. And about a year ago they somehow managed to get a piano on to the Great Wall of China and make this video. It’s amazing, take a look:

This video first of all does a great job incorporating a few classical Chinese instruments into the music, but also showcases the Daoist concept of Yin and Yang (陰陽; yīnyáng)–darkness and light.



The outfits they wear play into this concept as well: one with a white shirt and black pants; the other wearing the opposite. You could even argue the piano and the cello going against and with each other is also another way of incorporating this element into their music.

The video was recorded at the 黃崖關 (“Yellow Cliff Pass“;  Huángyáguān) portion of the Great Wall. The story behind making the video is pretty interesting, too, which you can read on their website here.

Follow the Piano Guys:

Website: http://thepianoguys.com/

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/ThePianoGuys

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PianoGuys

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PianoGuys


Driverless Car

The future, today! According this article from the New York Times, driver-less cars could change the shape of cities in the future. From the title:


The most exciting vocabulary bit is driver-less car in Chinese, which is 無人駕駛汽車:

無人駕駛 (wúrénjiàshǐ): unmanned

(literally no [無] person [人] drive [駕駛])

汽車 (qìchē): car

As for the rest of the title:


  • 將 (jiāng): will
  • 怎樣 (zěn​yàng): how
  • 改變 (gǎi​biàn): change
  • 未來 (wèi​lái): future
  • 城市 (chéng​shì): city
  • 生活 (shēng​huó): life

So the title is literally “driver-less cars will how change future city life”, or “How will driver-less cars change future city life?” Luckily Chinese is pretty straightforward!

Despite all this, I doubt we’ll be getting tour rides around Isla Nublar any time soon!


Don’t Let Me Be Your April Fool

It’s April Fool’s Day and in addition to see what Google and others are doing to celebrate, I came across this amazing image:



It says:



Two holidays are mentioned, April Fool’s Day and Tomb Sweeping Day:

愚人節 (yú​rén​jié): April Fool’s Day

清明節 (Qīng​míng​jié): tomb-sweeping day; celebration for the dead

The whole phrase roughly translates to: “Whoever lets me celebrate April Fool’s Day (plays me a fool), then I’ll let them celebrate Tomb Sweeping Day (I’ll be sweeping their tomb)”.

It’s so cheeky I love it!

Some other useful vocab from the phrases above:

誰 (shéi): who; whoever

讓 (ràng): allows; lets

過 (guò): pass (can also be used to be celebrate a holiday)

就 (jiù): “…then..”

Guess we know who not to play pranks on this year!