Hot answers tagged

29

The Simplest Way See the note by ppumkin below this answer for what seems like the simplest solution. It wasn't possible at the time I arrived in the UK - though perhaps things have changed. If you have success with that method, please upvote it and note your success. I'm leaving the remainder of this as an alternative method (especially since I thought it ...


15

What I went through I've been researching this for a number of months ahead of my move and didn't come up with much info, until I actually got to the UK and started 'shopping around'. Tried and failed.. I actually tried the 'Engineered Way' mentioned here, however neither of the two banks would accept it as valid, as their requirements clearly stated, ...


13

Having done the reverse - moved to the USA from the UK, I feel your pain. I moved in 2008 when banks were crashing. The primary way I found of doing this was to use a Secured Card, and I found an example of one from Capital One UK (but I'm sure there are others): http://www.capitalone.co.uk/support/faqs-secured-card.jsf With a secured card, you give them ...


13

It's illegal for a bank to refuse you as a customer, even if you are illegally on french territory for example. If a bank do so, you can call the Banque de France that will enroll you in a random french bank. Although it's illegal, lots of banks try to trick people, especially poor one, students, strangers, people who get debts, etc. If you don't want or ...


13

The form is pretty simple. You put your name, SSN and address and confirm that you're a US tax person, and give it to the bank. What's probably a surprise for you is that you are a US tax person. You need to file your annual tax returns, FBAR, and pay taxes (if the foreign earned income exclusion and foreign tax credit don't cover everything) to the US ...


11

The $10K limit is aggregate. You might have had a filing obligation in prior years as well, if the total of all of your accounts together in any one day was $10K or more. If you have more than $10K on a single account - yes, you're required to file FBAR, and you're required to list all of your accounts. Pay attention: FBAR is not only for classical bank ...


10

This is indeed a pretty tough question and I know a lot of people to whom it happened. There are no easy answer and as far as I know, you will need some trick. The solutions I heard of were to have someone (close enough) helping you by giving his/her address (he can write a paper saying you live with him/her) and passing you the mail. I heard of some ...


10

What you have found here regarding direct debit is called IBAN discrimination and is against the law. Specifically, against article 9 of EU Regulation 260/2012: A payer making a credit transfer to a payee holding a payment account located within the Union shall not specify the Member State in which that payment account is to be located, provided that ...


9

I've opened it with my work address and my passport. As long as they have an address where to send you correspondence (and debit card, etc), you should have no problem. So I used my work contract as "proof of address". For transparency, I've opened an account with Barclay's.


9

There are two ways that I and other fellow Kiwis (New Zealanders) found: Open it from our home country. I went to Travelex and they were able to open an account with HSBC in the UK from New Zealand, using my NZ address. Then 6 weeks later, I was able to pick up my card in HSBC Regent Street in London. Of course, this requires forward planning and it's too ...


9

Some details: Amazon charged you 189€. Your bank refused that for reasons they did not share with Amazon. If that happens (somebody trying to charge you and your bank refusing for whatever reason) the bank will charge the company a fee. The 3€ are the fee the bank charged Amazon because they tried to get money from an account where this was not possible. ...


8

The way they handle customers can change a lot, and not just between banks, but between branches as well. From what me and some of my friends went through I think the following apply: It is easier to get a new account in Central London, than in the suburbs. Branches in the suburbs are more conservative when it comes to validating your identity, and might ...


8

I am really not an expert and barely understand this, but I think you need to give them the two W9's. The reason for this is that the Canadian bank uses the information in a slightly different way than a US bank (for which the W9 instructions were written) would. A US bank uses the TIN from the W9 form to report income from the account to the IRS. The ...


7

You will require the following Your travel document (passport) Your HKID Card A paper bill addressed to your name, with your home mailing address OR a lease agreement in your name. This is an example of what they expect: Standard Chartered - documents required. You could probably get away without a bill with your home address (since you're staying in a ...


7

"Expat friendly" is a bit vague. What specific features are you looking for, and what negative aspects are you looking to avoid? All banks are governed by Bangko Sentral, so some of the red tape is systemic. For example, you will need to demonstrate that you are resident in PI, and that is usually interpreted as having an ACR, along with the usual proofs of ...


7

What you describe is not universal, but it is not unheard of either. Remember that France is still a country which makes heavy use of cheques - this is somewhere with some very modern banking features, and some things which feel very archaic... You've stated that you want to send money abroad, and to a non-Euro country. Given that, you might not actually ...


7

There is no reason to keep your move secret or to engage a lawyer. And there is no standard name for the service other than 'moving'. I know from personal experience that American Express, MasterCard, and Visa cards originally issued in the USA continue to work after you move to Europe and change your address. I have done it in three different countries ...


7

I am a happy user of Transferwise. I use it to transfer CHF and GBP to EUR, but they do USD to JPY too. It is not entirely fee-free, but they use the mid-market rate for foriegn exchange, and then charge a fee on top. For USD to JPY, the fee scheme is quite complex: A flat fee of $4 0.85% on the amount up to $135,000, and 0.73% on anything over that $...


6

Be flexible, since going by other answers in this thread different banks (even different branches of the same company) apply different rules. In my case, a UK bank refused to accept my home address because I didn't have any satisfactory paper proving that it was my address. They said they would have accepted a recent bank statement (which I didn't have with ...


6

Although HSBC operate in both countries, they are getting out of retail banking in Canada, and have quite a small presence in France (mainly the old CCF branches in the Paris area). I'm not aware of other banks that operate retail banking in both countries. There is no reason why you should have the same bank in each country, and plenty of reasons why you ...


6

I personally use my parents place as my US address. Then I go paperless and pay my accounts through a bank that I transfer money into from where I am now. Anything important is mailed to me by my parents. Initially you will get alerts or phone calls that you've made a foreign transaction. Just explain to them you will be out of the country for a few months.


5

I have been using my non-french EU bank account in France without any problem while residing there in 2003 and 2004. I was able to pay at all terminals with the CB (carte bleue) logo as much that I was able to do money transfers at no cost. I had a French bank account, because my salary payments required it and for receiving CAF payments. An additional ...


5

It should be possible to open a Norwegian bank account using a D-number. This is basically a temporary (dummy) ID number for foreigners. There may be other requirements such as country of residence and (large) minimum deposit. Of course, it takes time to apply for this so if you plan to stay more than six months, you may as well apply for the real ID number ...


5

There are certainly better ways to keep track of your finances than a spreadsheet. Personal financial management software is a broad category and offers a wide variety of choices, from free to paid. One way to handle multiple currencies is to maintain a different ledger for each currency that you deal with. Or, if you transfer money frequently, then you may ...


5

There are services that will produce a credit history report based on the country you used to live in. Experian or credit safe, as a couple. They cost quite a bit, about £50~£250 per search, based on the criteria you need your check to be carried out. Depending on what you need to do, just moving in to UK is not that bad. You can get a mobile phone contract,...


5

Mexico doesn't yet have "affordable" credit cards, by US standards. Every card I've seen has an annual fee (200 MXN/year is among the lowest), and very high interest rates (APR around 30%). If you need a card for local payments, and domestic online payments, all the banks issue debit cards. These are mostly Visa debit cards that work both locally and ...


5

For buying property, not having indefinite leave to remain (equivalent status to a green card) will mean many mortgage deals aren't available to you, so you'll end up paying a higher rate of interest than most people. Should you decide to buy, check your desired bank's mortgage lending criteria before applying - or go through an independent mortgage broker, ...


5

It depends from bank to bank. My brother come to UK from South Africa as a Polish national. I went to my bank that I have been with for several years, Natwest. And they told him they want a bank statement with proof of address in UK.... umm what? OK- I left him to go and explore the other banks. Barclays just wanted his passport and opened him a bank ...


5

It is possible to open a bank account without proving your address. For example, HSBC provides a helpful service The HSBC International Banking Center provides customers options to open personal deposit accounts outside the U.S. as well as inside the U.S. for non-U.S. residents You have to have a current account (and I think you have to have had it for 3 ...


5

I don't think that the cheque is important. I remember, as far as I can, always using cheques because it is the most common means of payment for large sums in France. While using cash is a bit weird because the amount is large, I think a wire would be fine. The last time I started to rent an apartment I payed the first rent (along with the deposit) with a ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible