Learn how to open a bank account in Ireland as an international student.
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Why should you open a bank account in Ireland?
As an international student in Ireland, you will need some money to take care of your day-to-day expenses. Carrying huge wads of cash is not wise, and using your regular bank account might be expensive because of international transaction fees. You can do one of the following two things to tackle this issue:
- Reach out to your home country's bank. If the bank has international branches in Ireland, you can talk to them about how you can manage your finances through their Ireland branch.
- Open a new bank account in one of Ireland's banks.
Note: If you are planning to work part time while studying, you will need to open a bank account in an Ireland bank to receive paychecks.
How to open a new bank account in Ireland
Very few Irish banks allow international students to open a new bank account online. After choosing a bank, check to see if they permit international students to apply online. If they do, you can fill out the application form and submit a scanned copy of the required documents to start the process.
If the bank of your choice doesn't permit international students to apply online, you can book an appointment and go to the bank in person with the required documents to apply on arrival.
What are the required documents?
- Proof of identification (Student ID proof)
- Valid passport
- Proof of address
- Utility bills (less than six months old)
- Previous bank statements
As a new international student, you will not have utility bills and bank statements from Ireland. In this case, you can submit utility bills and bank statements from your home country.
Note: Some banks might require you to submit additional documents. Check the bank's website before you get your documents together.
What should you think about before choosing your bank?
It is always convenient to have an account in a bank near you. Scout out the areas near your university and try to pick a bank with a branch close by.
Also, check to see if they have ATMs near your university and place of accommodation as some banks add a fee when you withdraw money from other bank’s ATMs.
Most banks waive or have subsidised service charges for student accounts. It is still important to read the terms and conditions carefully to check for hidden fees.
Offers and perks
All banks offer some form of incentive or offer to their customers. Check to see the perks offered by various banks and select the one most beneficial to you.
Top banks in Ireland
AIB, Bank of Ireland, KBC and Ulster Bank are some of the top banks in Ireland. Check their websites and compare them before picking one.
Caution: As Northern Ireland is a part of the UK please check the United Kingdom section for information on that region. The above article pertains to the Republic of Ireland.