What language do people from Taiwan speak?

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I’m going to visit Taiwan with my friend in 2012 and I would like to speak the language but I don’t know what language they speak.. Help me please!!

14 Answers

  • Oh, for Pete’s sake.

    People in Taiwan speak one of the following:

    Mandarin (most; it’s the language of education and until recently of government).

    Taiwanese dialect aka Minnan dialect (many; many young people can understand but not speak this, or do not speak it at all).

    Hakka (another Chinese dialect).

    Various Aboriginal languages are now making a comeback and being taught in the schools.

    Older folks (over 65-70) will mostly speak Japanese since that was the official language prior to 1949; most of these elderly people also speak Minnan as their home language.

    English is also taught in all schools from a fairly early age, but don’t expect brilliant fluency from most folks. Some people will surprise you, however.

    There is very little Cantonese spoken in Taiwan; it would be unusual to hear it.

    To have fun in Taiwan, you mostly have two choices if you feel like learning some of the language.

    Mandarin is more applicable to other things, not just Taiwan, and people are more likely to understand you.

    Taiwanese (Minnan) is more and more spoken, but Mandarin is more universally understood on Taiwan, and Taiwanese will “expect” a foreigner to speak Mandarin, not Minnan. People often answer me in Mandarin while I continue to speak Minnan to them, and they don’t even realize it.

    And BTW, variations in people’s Minnan accent and usage is mostly due to where they live on the island of Taiwan (north/south) and not where their ancestors come from on the Mainland.

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    Oh, actually Taiwanese can speak several languages but basically they speak Mandarin and Taiwanese, which is Min-nan language of Fujian province. Some of them can speak Teochew and some Hakka. Many can speak all of them mix or three of the four I stated above. I know u are very mix maybe due to the fact that they sound different but they are like same context, unlike people in US and Canada, where people speak English only and many learn other languages that is nothing to do with English, like French or Espanol, although they may sound a bit same. Anyway, whatever language they speak, they all speak Chinese, which all originated in Mainland China as they are called dialects, rather than as a seperate language as a whole. Pls do take note that some Taiwanese speak aboriginal language that speak by those aborigine tribe of Taiwan, like Paiwan and Amis, which live in the highland, like China’s minority tribes. See the source for further details.

  • About 80% of the people speak both Standard Mandarin and Taiwanese. Mandarin is the primary language of instruction in schools. A good 15% also speak Hokkein.

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    What language do people from Taiwan speak?

    I’m going to visit Taiwan with my friend in 2012 and I would like to speak the language but I don’t know what language they speak.. Help me please!!

  • Mandarin is the national language in Taiwan. They also speak dialects like Ming Nang, which is derived from Hokkien (Fujian), Kek or Teochew; depending on which province of China their acenstor was originally from.

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  • Chinese.

    Taiwanese are ethnically and linguistically Chinese…..what happened was Mao Tse Tung and his army took China over and the Nationalists fled to the island of Formosa….

    there is a lot of warlike tension between China and Taiwan.

  • Taiwanese

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