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How to open a British bank account while living overseas?

Hi, I’m a British Citizen who currently lives in Korea. I’d like to open a British bank account, but not sure if I can without going into a branch in person and signing forms, etc. Is it possible to do this while living overseas and if so, what bank would you reccomend. I’d like to get a Visa card with the account and more importantly, the ability to withdraw money from other countries. I travel a lot.
Thanks for any help.

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4 Responses to “How to open a British bank account while living overseas?”

  1. The Knowledge said :

    If you’ve lived in the UK before, it may be possible to open a new account or re-open your old account with the bank you were with before. However, due to Money Laundering Legislation, you need to provide documentation before opening an account and most importantly, you need a registered address in the UK and proof that you live at that address.

    You could try opening a HSBC Account in South Korea and use that until you get back to the U.K. HSBC is the world’s largest banking group and I believe you can access your account from anywhere in the world with them. However, you should double check that before going ahead with it. At the very least, you will be able t withdraw money from Cashpoints with a HSBC Account.

    An offshore bank account is another option, but only really viable if you’re quite wealthy.

  2. Jonathan said :

    There is an account called the HSBC Plus account. There is a subscription fee for this account but, you get lots of benefits a visa card which you would like, and you get free ATM withdrawals abroad.

    Theres no harm in having a look.

  3. LoopeyLoz said :

    You’ll either need to go into a branch in the UK with some ID e.g passport and driving licence. They will also need proof of address.
    You can sign up for an account online but if you do this you will have to send them your original ID documents through the post, you will not be able to photocopy them. So then there is the risk of them going missing.
    Banks are very strict when opening accounts so these are the only ways I am afraid.

  4. AR.SAM said :

    If there is a Branch of British bank in Korea approach them:
    Or write to you British Bank to send a application to open a “non-resident account” for a British national: they will guide you: OR you can get the details in the British banks website:
    or ask at


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