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Overseas Health Insurance News: Guide to setting up a bank account abroad

Moving abroad involves a lot of organisation, but a number of jobs can be carried out or started before leaving the UK and setting up a bank account is one of them.

By getting a head start, expatriates will be able to manage their money more effectively once they arrive in their destination country.

Why do I need a foreign bank account?

Having a foreign bank account will prevent you from paying fees every time you take money out of an ATM, which will really add up if you are living in a country.

It will also mean that your wages can be paid in directly and often helps with residency applications.

Further to this it will be easier to manage your funds as there will be no need for calculations from sterling all the time and before long you will be thinking in terms of the local currency as you use it every day.

How to start

Decide which local bank you want an account with. This means looking at all the options and which ones have branches in the town or city where you will be living.

If you are moving to somewhere very small, see where the nearest place is which is likely to have a bank and perhaps opt for that one.

Also look to see what benefits they offer for new customers and the sort of interest rate you can expect on your money.

Applying for the bank account

Request an application form from the chosen bank either over the phone or online and fill it in. Expect to be asked to prove a number of things when returning the form to the bank.

These may include proof of earnings, which means tax returns or pay stubs, as well as evidence that you are over the age of 18, so a passport or driving license.

Make sure that you just send photocopies of these and keep the originals safe, unless you are going into the branch in person when you can let them see the actual documents.

Once the application has been approved you will need to make a deposit into the account in order to activate it. The level of this amount will depend on the country and bank in which you are opening the account.

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