Is the HSBC Expat Account the Best Bank Account for British Nationals Living Abroad?

There’s a lot to organise when you’re moving abroad. This will include accommodation, currency, employment, international health insurance, and an international bank account. With an international bank account, you can easily manage your money wherever you are in the world, which is important if you have wages, savings, and investments in multiple countries.

The HSBC Expat bank account is seen as one of the best bank accounts for British nationals who are living abroad. Below, we look into what this account can offer expats, and what the alternative options are for international bank accounts for expats.

What are the benefits of the HSBC Expat bank account?

One of the main benefits of the HSBC Expat bank account is that it allows the user to manage all their finances in one place. This can be especially helpful if you will be moving around a lot, and/or still have business in your home country. With the HSBC Expat account, you’ll have one sole place to keep track of your finances, with no monthly or annual fee.

The account is held in Jersey, the Channel Islands, which is a secure offshore jurisdiction. This means that wherever your money is coming from or going to, it can be properly managed through just one account.

You can set up your Expat account in USD, EUR, or GBP, whichever you prefer. Your account currency will stay the same, no matter which country you’re currently residing in.

The HSBC Expat account can be managed online, via a mobile app, or telephone banking, so you can find the platform that most suits your preferences. You can make quick payments from country to country with the Expat Global Money Account, making it simple to make transfers.

Premier customers also benefit from a relationship manager, who can provide guidance and advice on how to best manage your money with the Expat account.

Who is eligible for the HSBC Expat bank account?

The HSBC Expat account has specific criteria for the individual to be eligible. You must be over 18 and a resident in an eligible country or region. A full list can be found on the HSBC application form, but it includes the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, UAE, Hong Kong, Singapore, China, and India.

You will also need to meet at least one of the following:

  • Save or invest at least £50,000 (or local currency equivalent) with HSBC Expat within the first three months of opening the account
  • Earn a salary of at least £100,000 (or local currency equivalent)
  • Already be an HSBC Premier customer in another country or region

If you don’t meet these criteria, HSBC does have other options for opening an account overseas.

What are the other options for bank accounts for British nationals living abroad?

There are plenty of other options for expat bank accounts. Below are just some of the choices available.

Lloyds International Current Account

The Lloyds International Current Account requires the individual to earn at least £50,000 or have £25,000 saved, so may be better for moderate earners than the HSBC Expat account. The account is also restricted on which country you live in – it includes the UK, USA, Canada, Germany, France, Spain, UAE, and Singapore.

With this account, there is a monthly fee of £7.50, but like the HSBC Expat account, you can manage your money from anywhere, as the account is held in an offshore jurisdiction.

You can set up your account in USD, EUR, or GBP, and there are no fees for international payments, whether sending or receiving money.

Barclays International Bank Account

Barclay’s International Bank Account is open to residents in 70 countries worldwide, including UK expats and people moving to the UK from overseas. The account is held on the Isle of Man, another secure offshore jurisdiction, and money can be managed in a choice of USD, EUR, or GBP.

Money can be access worldwide, wherever you are, via internet or telephone banking, or via the Barclays app. International payments can be made in 90 countries and 60 currencies.

To qualify, you will need to reside in one of the 70 listed countries and have a minimum of £100,000 in savings or investments across all the accounts you hold with Barclays. If you want access to a relationship manager, this increases to a minimum of £250,000.

NatWest International Select Account and Cash Management Account

NatWest requires two accounts to be able to manage multiple accounts and currencies. However, they can both easily be managed from the Natwest app, or via online or telephone banking, with simple transfers between accounts.

The NatWest International Select Account has a monthly fee of £8 and allows you to manage money overseas and in your home country. The Cash Management Account acts as an instant access savings pot, with flexibility to withdraw money at any time.

To qualify for NatWest’s international account, you need to be over 16 years old, live in one of their 20 listed countries, and have a annual salary of at least £40,000, or deposit a minimum of £25,000.

What do I need to open an expat bank account?

To open an overseas account, most banks will require proof of your identity, such as a passport or driving licence, as well as employment, income, and tax details. You’ll also usually need proof of address, such as a utility bill.

Some bank accounts can be opened online, but some might require you to have an in-person or phone meeting with a member of staff at the bank. During this, they might verify your identity documents and also discuss your application to check everything is correct.

Moving abroad?

If you’re moving abroad, a bank account isn’t the only thing you’ll need. You can get flexible, comprehensive international health insurance from Expatriate Group. We’re an expert in providing healthcare insurance for individuals and families living and working overseas, with policies designed for every eventuality. Get a quote today or contact us for more information.

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