How does someone new to the country get a bank account?

My cousin-in-law is new to the UK and has been here for about 5 days. She is looking for a permanant place to live and needs to get a bank account. How can she go about doing this and what is the best bank to use? She has a passport and a valid visa, but it appears that there are lots of barriers out there to prevent her from applying. We only need a cash card that she can pay her salary into for the moment.

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16 Responses to “How does someone new to the country get a bank account?”

  1. trollhair said:

    Go to an American bank there. She can transfer her account there.

  2. Phil said:

    Pick a bank and ask them. The only place I’ve ever opened a bank account outside the UK was in NZ – all I needed there was a ‘permanent’ address (ie not a hostel).

  3. Teacher Man said:

    Go to the bank with a large sum of money in hand.

    Poof, all barriers disappear, and you have a bank account!

    The other documentation can’t hurt.

  4. angel 3 said:

    you must b kidding me.

    ok, you walk into a bank and register.
    also i suggest washington since it is national.

  5. nazy said:

    well i have my friend too who had come here on a visit visa and had opened a bank account on her name.it was barclays bank.make the officials understand the situation and am sure they will understand ur problem.good luck!

  6. Mike M said:

    Most banks do require at least a drivers license and social security card.I’d talk to the banks and see if they had any suggestions.

  7. Red said:

    Difficult due to fraudsters.
    THe banks are really clamping down on fraudsters now.She might have to get an employers letter and even a landlords letter or rent book.The banks might even need her address and bank details and references from her home country.

    Good luck

  8. *haggisbasher* said:

    I returned to the UK last year and I went to Lloyds TSB, I had no problem but I had to take my mum with me to verify everything as she had a long standing account with them. She will need to explain that she just wants to open an account for her salary to go into, try to go to a bank that a family member already uses. I have heard alot of people in this situation having many problems opening accounts. Good luck. PS. Tell her to bring along ID, like a passport.

  9. maid marion said:

    ask

  10. gordnstead said:

    FIRST OF ALL YOU NEED TOO HAVE A PERMANENT
    HOME ADDRESS.FOR CONTACT DETAILS ON WHERE TOO SEND YOUR STATEMENTS..USE THE BANK OF ENGLAND;;;IF SHE IS STAYING WITH SOMEONE JUST NOW SHE CAN USE THAT ADDRESS WHEN SHE MOVES TOO HER NEW HOUSE JUST LET THEM KNOW CHANGE OF ADDRESS

  11. CharmedLady said:

    you will have to have several forms of ID for example, driving license, a bill with your name and CURRENT address on, etc
    the bank will not allow you to open a new account without proof of id, passport is a nother accepatable for of ID. HOPE THIS HELPS.

  12. keo said:

    Its because of this law
    OUT-LAW News, 23/11/2001

    A new money laundering Directive has been given the final seal of approval by the EU’s Council of Ministers. The Directive aims to stamp out the financing of terrorism and organised crime and widens the scope of the current money laundering regime to combat the proceeds of all serious crime. Previously, the Directive only covered the proceeds of drugs offences.
    And also to do with money laundering, the aggravation we had to go thru when we sold our house to move abroad was astounding.
    Keep trying ask the bank to help you, with the problem

    Your cousins best bet is to go into the bank with you showing where you live (Driving licence utility bill etc) they may then let you open up a joint account
    K

  13. tracymcuk said:

    Hi there

    I know you said she has a valid visa, but does it allow her to work in this country too. If so, then she should take her passport, visa and anything with her name and the address she is staying at, to a bank.

    There are lots of other banks in this country other than your Lloyds TSB, Barclays, HSBC etc. See if their is a bank around that caters for your ethnicity, i.e. The Irish Bank, Bank of India, etc etc.

    All the best.

  14. Andrew said:

    Its not difficult you need photo ID and proof of address.

    However proof of address can be a rent book. Standard rent books or rental contracts can be bought from stationers or downloaded.

    If you (assuming you are in the UK) go into a rental arrangement so you are the landlord for your inlaw.

  15. roxpox99 said:

    It might be best to make an appointment with a bank and bring all her documentation with her. Passport, visa, permit, etc and maybe some proof of adress. It might be best if you go with her and show some papers of your own e.g. proof of your adress etc. I’ve only opened a foreign account in Finland and I just had to make an appointment and show them every piece of paperwork that I had. Good luck!

  16. McDougal McLoud said:

    You can open a Building society Account. These allow you to just pay in money and withdraw money with a card at a cashpoint, but there is no credit / cheque book facility.

    Alternatively, you could open a post office account.

    The Building society is probably more flexible because you will get the cashpoint card.




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