How to open a bank account in Ireland

How to open a bank account in Ireland

With an incredible mixture of culture, friendly people and a thriving economy, Ireland is in the eyes of many a pot of gold for expats, pun intended. It has lots to offer including bustling cities, wonderful nature and the feeling you are welcome from the Irish which is the icing on the cake. If you are thinking of making it your home as a student, worker, retiree or investor, you will need a bank account. Here is our guide on how to open a bank account in Ireland.

Documents needed to open a bank account in Ireland

It should be fairly straightforward to open a bank account in Ireland provided you show up at the branch with the correct documentation which much include a proof of identity and of address. Here is the minimum you will be required to provide:

  • Passport or photo ID
  • Proof of address such as an utility bill or bank statement or official correspondence

Can I open a bank account in Ireland as a non-resident?

Yes, it is possible to open a bank account in Ireland as a non-resident. All you will have to provide is proof of address from your home country. You may be required to have two different forms of proof in this case and also you may be asked to provide your financial history in your country country via a bank statement.

Best banks in Ireland

With a thriving economy comes a thriving banking sector and as such Ireland has a lot of options of bank to choose from. All of them have similar offers and you can choose between local banks such as the Bank of Ireland or international giants such as Barclays.

  • Bank of Ireland: this is the largest bank in the country with the largest network of branches and ATMs. They have a full list of offers that you can apply online to including a student account, business banking and basic current and savings accounts. These come with contactless debt cards. If you are opening a business account you may qualify for overdraft and cashback.
  • Allied Irish Banks: with a basic account that is free if you have a minimum balance of 2500 euros, this may be a good option. All basic account can be opening online and include contactless debit card, online banking, a phone help desk and SMS service. If you are opening a business account, they have a special offer for startups which includes financial advice from experts.
  • Ulster Bank: with a low fee of only 4 euros for their basic account, this could be the bank for you. By the way, this fee is waived if you keep a minimum balance of 3000 euros. Accounts include overdraft, contactless debit card and emergency cash that you can withdrawal with a code from an ATM if you lose your card. O course student accounts are free if you can prove you are a full time student.
  • Permanent TSB: if you deposit 1500 euros a month, Permanent TSB's basic account is free and it also comes with 1% interest included on those 1500 euros. Accounts are various and include a selection of debit and credit cards, loans and insurance and all the basics such as a good quality online banking app.

Watch out with fees. One peculiarity of banking in Ireland is something called the government stamp duty which is applied to visa debit cards which is low (2.5 euros per year). Banks may also charge to close accounts, will certainly charge for overseas card use including withdrawals and some will charge for over the counter transactions. We recommend you read the fine print and ask for a fee's list from your relationship manager.

The virtual bank account alternative

Transferring money abroad from Ireland is expensive when you use a bank

Moving money abroad is expensive with a bank because they have a lot of costs to cover. In fact, it can get to 10% of the total transaction even though they will say all there is is a SWIFT charge between 20 and 30 euros. This is not the whole truth. Take an example of sending 10 thousand euros to India. You only get 9000 euros worth of rupees back in India if you use certain banks. In other words,
you pay 1000 euros to send your money one way! Think about it: using this logic, if you send 100 thousand it will be cheaper to put a suitcase of cash on a first class flight to India and pay a small army to escort the money to the bank.

The more affordable alternative is a virtual bank account by B2B Pay. You get 9900 euros worth of rupees in India. You save 900 euros on every transaction. Plus you get your own IBAN in Europe that works just like a normal European bank account and you can use it to send and receive money within the EU for free and send money anywhere in the world in 33 currencies for a small 1% flat fee.

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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  • Techstars
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  • Nordea
  • Tekes
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