SEPA is supposed to provide for a single Euro payments area, where direct deposits and direct debits are supposed to be unified across the eurozone. IBAN replaces local bank account numbers.

A question from 2016 complains that in practice, institutions insist on a local German bank account. How is this now in 2018? Should I still expect to require a German bank account in Germany, or have these problems since been resolved?

  • I think the only way to find out is to try it. My suspicion is that it will have got much better (Vodafone will want to accept Dutch bank accounts so that Netherlanders crossing the border to work on a daily basis can have a Vodafone SIM, etc). It didn't take long to open an account, so if you do have to, you can. Commented Sep 6, 2018 at 7:26
  • @MartinBonner Oh, I'm sure that I can — but it's one of those things that can be a bit of a "chicken and egg" hassle when starting up in a new country.
    – gerrit
    Commented Sep 6, 2018 at 7:52

1 Answer 1


In theory no, in practice yes.

My employer in 2024 still requires a German bank account for paying the salary.

  • Side note: If the employer demands from you to open a new account with a bank, you can (additionally) charge the employer for necessary banking fees associated with that new bank account. You may therefore defer opening a new bank account in Germany until an employer asks you to do so. This labor law rule does not apply if you already have voluntarily opened a bank account (since it is then attributed to personal lifestyle). Commented Feb 13 at 16:00
  • 1
    @KaiBurghardt Interesting, but it sounds like more effort than it's worth.
    – gerrit
    Commented Feb 13 at 16:32

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