Taiwan trip after 2024 massive earthquake - eNidhi India Travel Blog

Taiwan trip after 2024 massive earthquake

Post trip update: I've returned safely from my planned trip to Taiwan. There were absolutely zero issues. Of course I didn't visit earthquake affected east coast. Rest of Taiwan is absolutely fine.

-- Original post --- 

I was scheduled to travel to Taipei (Taiwan's capital) on 5th April night from Mumbai and reach there on 6th April evening. While I got eVisa and was finalizing my plan, on 3rd April morning I woke up to the news of massive earthquake hitting Taiwan.

As I gathered more news about the natural calamity, I had to make a decision. Should I cancel or postpone my trip or proceed with original plan with caution.

This post shares my analysis and decision process. I am not saying my approach is best- but you can go through and make your own judgement.

Money already committed to the trip:

  • 35k for flight- non refundable
  • 9k for couple of day trips (free to cancel upto 24 hours prior)
  • Hostel bookings worth 10-12k, possible to cancel till 24-48 hours prior
  • Udupi-Mumbai travel, stay- around 3k INR

Other things- roaming, local trains, more day trips etc I had not yet spent, so no loss. A total of 40-45k is what i would lose if I cancel the trip because of earthquake. SQ may allow rescheduling for lesser loss. Not sure.

Risks if I proceed with the journey

  • Aftershocks, more earthquakes or tsunami that may occur after my arrival will spoil the plans and add to more risk
  • As nation will be focused on restoring damage to roads, buildings etc, tourism is not the focus and many attractions/services might be closed if needed or deemed non essential
  • City not at its best, people not in their best of moods- an overall experience will be bit compromised
  • If any vital service like intercity train or airport etc is closed for any reason, it might impact my travel plan.
  • Any partially damaged building is a risk to residents, pedestrians till it is spotted and fixed.

Below is my current assessment

  • Most damage is on the east coast- Hualien and nearby- as my trip was very short (1 week) I had decided to skip east coast and focus on Taipei and Kaosiung towns. The damage to these towns are minimum.
  • Most essential services- airports, trains, metros are operating right now
  • My tour operator in Taipei confirmed there is no impact or damage and their tours are ON as per plan
  • Japan has reduced tsunami warming to "observation"
  • Even if I reschedule no guarantee that next date all will go fine. There is always some risk. 
  • There is still 4 days before I land in Taipei- enough time for restoring any vital damages in the city and things may stabilize.
  • There is still some risk that some services may not operate, I may suffer from loss/inconvenience/delay. Those risks are part of any travel plan. I would rather go and face it than back off fearing risks.

After reaching I may have to tweak my plans a bit based on ground realities. 

Latest updates on CNN about Taiwan Earthquake 2024 here

What would you do in this situation? I had faced this when I was scheduled to go to Bali, sometime in 2016 when a volcano resulted in flight cancellations. You've planned a trip and an unexpected calamity- earthquake, volcano etc

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