Hong Kong is a diverse and vibrant metropolis, with over 650,000 expats, as well as a large network of mainland Chinese language citizens. No matter where you’re starting from, Hong Kong’s captivating cultural mix, incredible food, and alluring expat network makes it a awesome destination united states.
If you’re planning on residing in Hong Kong, one of the first stuff you’ll need to do is to get a local bank account. Being able to manage your cash like a neighborhood is important that will help you settle in, get hold of and ship bills.
This guide looks at how to open a bank account in Hong Kong - and also highlights a smart option for low cost international money transfers.
Can I open a bank account as a non-resident of Hong Kong?
Non-residents are allowed to open bank accounts in Hong Kong. However, each bank will make its own decisions about which products they offer to non-resident applicants. That means you’ll need to research the options available to you, to find the one which fits your needs best.
Hong Kong offers a wide selection of local and international banks. You should not have problems opening a bank account here whether you are a resident or not. And while, in general, banking system is fairly modern, note that people in Hong Kong often rely on checks to transfer their money.
What’s the process? How long does it usually take?
Opening a bank account in Hong Kong will usually mean you need to make an appointment and go along to a bank branch in person. Some banks have specific designated branches which are set up to support expat applications. Here the staff will be used to helping newcomers to Hong Kong - and be able to offer comprehensive English-language support.
If you’re planning on staying in Hong Kong for more than 180 days, you’ll need to register for a Hong Kong ID card (HKID) within your first 30 days in the country. It’s free to apply, and you’ll usually get your card within 7 days. If you have your HKID already at the time you’re applying for your bank account, you should take it along with you. Alternatively, banks may allow you to present a valid passport and visa if necessary when setting up your bank account, and then bring your HKID for verification later.
How to Open a Bank Account in Hong Kong
The specific criteria you have to fulfill when opening a bank account in Hong Kong as a non-resident vary from bank to bank. In general, however, it is much easier to do so in Hong Kong rather than in Europe or the US. The procedure takes up to two weeks and your application is highly unlikely to be denied.
How to Choose Your Bank in Hong Kong
With 200 banks from about 30 different countries, Hong Kong offers a wide variety of options for anyone. The branches, especially around the more international areas like Central or Causeway Bay, usually have English-speaking staff that can guide you through the process of obtaining an account.
Top Banks Available in Hong Kong
- DBS Bank
- Standard Chartered
- Hang Seng Bank
- Bank of East Asia
- Bank of China
Which Documents are Necessary for a Foreigner (Non-Resident) to Open a Bank Account?
Different banks will have slightly varying processes for account opening, and you might have to present different documents depending on your situation. However, the basic paperwork required will be the same across most banks:
All banks could have barely varying methods for account opening, and you might have to provide specific files depending on your scenario. However, the basic paperwork required might be the equal across many banks:
- Your Hong Kong Identity Card or a valid passport (current HKID card, or valid travel document)
- Proof of address in Hong Kong or your home country (you do not have to be a Hong Kong resident to open a bank account in Hong Kong);
- Completed application form.
Depending on the type of account you’re applying for you might be asked to provide some additional documents such as:
- Details of your nationality, and why you’re setting up an account in Hong Kong
- Proof of employment
- Source of your income and the opening deposit
- Levels of activity you expect in your account
- Tax residency and ID number
What Common banking fees are involved?
Hong Kong has a well developed banking system, so you’ll have a choice of accounts and providers. It’s important to take a close look at the fees for each account type, as they will vary significantly - and may not be the same as the charges you’re used to at home.
If you don’t have access to a nearby account in Hong Kong while you arrive, you may want to apply the bank card connected to your home account for ATM withdrawals alternatively. Take a look at the costs related to this - you'll in all likelihood pay an overseas withdrawal charge in addition to a overseas transaction charge. Those expenses may be probabilities of the quantity you withdraw, or a set charge.
To reduce the prices of the usage of your home card, ask your financial institution in the event that they have partnerships with any neighborhood banks in Hong Kong. If they do, you may take advantage from decreased or waived ATM fees by the use of these partner banks.
Once you have your nearby bank account in Hong Kong, you'll acquire a brand new ATM card. Most banks provide free withdrawals from their own - and sometimes partner banks - ATMs. However, in case you use a cash system from outside the network, or at the same time as you journey, you’ll in all likelihood pay a price. Nearby expenses can be HK$15 - HK$30 in keeping with transaction. Worldwide prices can come in at as much as HK$40 + 1% - 1.95% currency conversion charge in step with transaction.
Normal bank fees
Other fees you’ll want to look out for include:
- Monthly service fees
- Transfer fees - inward and outward
- Fees for paying in cash or cheques
- Early closure or inactivity fees
- Card or cheque book replacement fees
Overdraft service fees
Those expenses can vary extensively among banks and account merchandise. Reading the smallprint earlier is the most effective way to make certain you get the right account for your needs.
To transfer cash to a Hong Kong bank, you will need a selected code. Find your Hong Kong bank code and study extra approximately shifting cash among Hong Kong banks.
Fees for international transfers
As an expat in Hong Kong, the probabilities are that you’ll want to ship and acquire global payments. As go-border transfers together with your bank can be highly-priced, that is one rate you’ll truly want to check out before you choose an account product.
Take a look at your chosen account to see what upfront prices you’ll pay to send and receive international payments. You might find a range of different expenses. The charges we found in multiple Hong Kong’s largest banks are indexed as:
- International transfer service fee (usually cheaper for online transfers, and much higher for in-branch service)
- Telex charge/ Cable charge
- Correspondent bank charge
- Non-domicile currency telegraphic transfer charge
- Surcharge for odd/remote currency transfer
- Additional fee for instructions by fax, or in Chinese
Make sure you understand which of these costs are payable for your normal transfers, so there are no surprises.
Similarly, in case you’re sending money in a overseas foreign money you’ll additionally regularly pay a further price that's rolled up into the exchange charge used. Check the telegraphic switch fee supplied via your chosen financial institution, compared to the mid-marketplace exchange price which you’ll discover on Google. If there’s a difference, this probably approach you’re paying a markup - an additional rate which is not transparent, and might push up expenses even in addition.
If financial institution telegraphic switch expenses have got you pulling your hair out, it’s exact to understand you could also turn to expert 1/3 birthday celebration companies to make the technique of sending international payments less difficult and cheaper. Extra on that coming right up.
Banking in Hong Kong: Credit or Debit Cards?
Acquiring a credit card should now not be a trouble; however, there may be exclusive requirements concerning your credentials and annual revenue for various forms of cards and credit limits. Usually talking, in addition to the above-stated files, you will additionally want to offer a proof of your salary or your profits statements from the ultimate numerous months in order to get a credit account.
Debit playing cards in Hong Kong, but, aren't commonplace, especially VISA and credit card. There is a excessive hazard you may have problem paying with them, including bills for the products you store for on line.
Banking in Hong Kong: Paper Checks
Unlike in many different nations, assessments are nevertheless a usually used approach of charge in Hong Kong, even among unique businesses. You usually obtain a check booklet for your account out of your bank. There are generally no fees for using or depositing assessments in Hong Kong. But, assessments aren't an generic technique of fee in retail. In order to overcome the restrictions of paper tests, banks have these days delivered an e-check machine.
Bank Account Services in Hong Kong
All banks in Hong Kong offer you the services you would generally expect from institutions with an international standing. Both product information and account statements are usually available in English or Chinese.
Services you get at nearly any bank include:
- Savings and current accounts
- Time deposit accounts
- Foreign currency accounts
- Standing orders
- Money transfers
- Currency exchange (sometimes free of charge for account holders)
- Direct debit
- Investment advice
- Insurance services
How to Send and Receive International Transfers with Hong Kong Bank Account - Use Wise for Better Solutions
Sending a cross-border payment with your bank can be confusing and expensive. To save time, money and hassle, check out the specialist international transfer service available from Wise.
Wise payments use a simple obvious transparent system. Which means you’ll be capable of see easily precisely what you’re paying - and what your recipient gets - earlier than you verify a transfer. All transactions use the mid-marketplace change price with out a markup - so there aren't any hidden fees to worry about. Simply honest low-cost international bills, arranged online and delivered securely in your recipient - no matter wherein inside the global they are.
Getting a local financial institution account is an crucial a part of settling into your new domestic. However it’s useful to keep in mind that your cash wishes as an expat can be barely different - and the features and fees of debts in your new vicinity may not be the same as you’re used to.
Spend a bit of time thinking about how you’ll use your new account, and checking the service fees for different products, to make sure you get the best possible value. And don’t forget that specialist services like Wise can also be a great way to make your everyday life easier, and save money on fees when sending and receiving international payments.
can i open a bank account in hong kong online?
Yes, you can. You can use Wise to open your bank account in hong kong online.
can i open bank account in hong kong from abroad?
Yes you can, you can follow the same procedure as those opening a bank account in hong kong online using Wise.
how to open a hong kong bank account in us?
You can still open a hong kong bank account in the US as a non resident with Wise.
hang seng bank account opening requirements
You will need Details of your nationality, and why you’re setting up an account in Hong Kong, Proof of employment, Tax residency and ID number to open a hang seng bank account.
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