Taipei is known for being a major culinary centre. It is home to a staggering number of restaurants, and offers a tantalisingly tasty selection of different global cuisines. As well as traditional Taiwanese fare, visitors can also enjoy dishes from the different regions of China, Japanese delicacies, Vietnamese meals, and foods from Thailand, Korea, Italy, India, the Middle East, and more! Vegetarian delights are very easy to find in Taipei. With such a wide variety of dining outlets, eating cheap in Taipei is very easy. You can enjoy excellent, delicious, and filling meals without blowing your travel budget on food.
Here are some top tips for eating cheap is Taipei:
Visit the Night Markets
Most districts and neighbourhoods have a selection of night markets, some of which are open during the day time too. Market food can be a really inexpensive way to eat. Look for which stalls are attracting the locals, and fill up there! You can also pick up fruit for breakfast, and other snacks for throughout the day.
Some well known night market foods include oyster omelette, Taiwan tempura, pork buns, sausage, fried chicken, and spareribs. Shilin Night Market is one of the most well known night markets in Taipei. Ning Xia Yeshi is another large and popular choice.
Stay in Places Where Breakfast is Included
If a few extra dollars is the difference between a room with breakfast and a room without, do the maths. You could end up saving a fair amount of money by paying extra for the inclusive option. It also makes it quick and easy to start your day!
Avoid Places with English Menus
English menus mean that a restaurant expects to cater for a predominantly tourist crowd. This also means inflated prices! Check out restaurants that are more aimed at locals. They will be cheaper, and you will often be served more authentic fare. Use pictures to help you order, learn the names of a few favourite dishes, and use a translation tool to help you out in sticky spots. The chances are, however, that somebody will be able to speak enough English to help you out.
Avoid Places That do not Display Prices
Menus without prices are a huge no-no for those looking to save money. Be warned! You may enjoy the most delicious meal, but the bill at the end is likely to leave a very sour after-taste. No prices usually mean expensive prices!
Dine at Veggie Buffets
There are numerous vegetarian buffets around the city, serving a wide range of tasty and filling foods. They usually charge by weight, so you only pay for what you eat. And the prices are very reasonable. Whilst you will pay extra for a portion of rice, the soups are generally free, and you can go back for as much as you like. So a small meal and lots of soup can mean big savings!
Try Cafes Over Restaurants
The cafe scene is starting to take off in Taipei, and prices for simple meals are often less than you would pay in a restaurant. Have a look at a few menus for comparison as you wander around and consider eating in a cute cafe. This is particularly useful for lunch.
Eating cheap in Taipei can be easy once you know how. To make even bigger savings, stick to locally produced beers and alcoholic drinks rather than imported brands.