How to open a bank account in Cyprus

How to open a bank account in Cyprus

It is no secret that Cyprus is a great place to have a life: great weather, low taxes and plenty of cultural diversity including a large expat community. There are large populations of british, turkish, greek, and russian nationals and plenty of representation from at least 10 different countries.

If you are looking to make the island nation your home and take advantage of its beautiful weather as a student, worker, retiree or investor - even if you choose to live away from its largest cities such as its capital, Nicosia - , here is our guide on how to open a bank account in Cyprus.

Documents needed to open a bank account in Cyprus

It is not too difficult to open a bank account in Cyprus even if you are a non-resident with documentation requirements being fairly straightforward and bank staff speaking English rather well. Generally speaking here are the documents you need:

  • Passport
  • A reference from your bank in your home country
  • Proof of address
  • Anticipated turnovers
  • Information on why you need the account

Of course, for companies, requirements are different and will include company incorporation documents and all documentation by its shareholders.

Can I open a bank account in Cyprus as a non-resident

Yes it is possible to open a bank account as a non-resident, but it is likely that you will need a good reason to do so, such as investment, employment and plenty of references. You may be required to pay a visit to the branch, have a minimum balance and the approval process may take 2 weeks.

Best banks in Cyprus

Most Cypriot banks have focused on business and private wealth management, yet there are plenty of options for those seeking normal current accounts and everyday banking services such as loans, insurance, phone customer service, online banking and ATMs. There are at least 3 large players in the country offering a full stack of services: Hellenic Bank, Bank of Cyprus and Alpha Bank.

  • Alpha Bank: With an English site and plenty of services and products, this is a full service bank with all your banking needs being met, including online banking, online applications for a variety of services, cards with cashback and plenty of ATMs and branches around the country.
  • Eurobank: A bit more of a specialized bank, Eurobank offers accounts of all types and cards and the like, yet it gives most of its business units in the country chose to focus on corporate and wealth management. Still, it is possible to open a bank account with Eurobank.
  • Hellenic Bank: with an English site and plenty of services and products, this is a full service bank presence in major cities and with ATMs all over the country. They are a great offer for those needing a simple current account as students, workers or youths, with special offers that include debit cards and low fees.
  • Bank of Cyprus: as a retail bank it offers the full spectrum of services including savings and current accounts, multi-currency accounts, loans and insurance and expert advice if you are an investor or business. Accounts include debit cards, optional credit cards, SMS service and online banking.

There are more banks worth considering such as SGBC, usbbank, RCB, Astro Bank and the National Bank of Greece.

As mentioned previously, most banks are focused on private investors and businesses, including local and foreign banks. Here is a short list of banking operations with with such a focus:

The virtual bank account alternative

It is expensive to send money overseas from Cyprus (if you use a bank)

Sending money abroad from anywhere is expensive because a bank’s operational costs are high. It may seem like this is not the case since a bank often says it only costs a single SWIFT fee of between 15 and 50 euros. Take as an example a remittance of 10 thousand euros to India. When it is all set and done, the transfer would result in about 9000 euros worth of rupees bank in India. This is not a good deal.

With a Virtual Bank Account by B2B Pay, the same transfer would result in 9900 euros worth of rupees, saving you about 900 euros. Plus you get an account with a European IBAN you can use to send money anywhere in Europe and abroad to over 200 countries in 30 or so currencies.

How to open a bank account in Europe

We have a few guides to guide you through the process of opening a bank account in multiple European countries and explaining why a virtual bank account with B2B Pay may be a better alternative if you are transferring money outside of Europe and taking advantage of a better rate.



How to open a bank account overseas

We have a few guides to guide you through the process of opening a bank account in multiple countries all over the world and explaining why a virtual bank account with B2B Pay may be a better alternative if you are transferring money outside of Europe and taking advantage of a better rate.


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