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Opening Bank Account in China
Published:2011-10-1 【Back

If you are new to China and need to open a bank account, for the sake of convenience it is best to use one of the country's many commercial banks. The application procedure is not complicated.

You will only need your passport, and it is not necessary to present proof of your address or income. When entering a bank, head for an information desk and tell them what you need. The employees will give you a bilingual form to fill out. If you need help, just ask. Bank staff members are often careful and patient, and may even have neater handwriting than you.

Make sure that the name on the form matches the name on your passport exactly. Otherwise your account may fail when you attempt to conduct transactions. If you want internet or mobile banking, you can also request these at the same time. After the forms are completed, hand them over to the bank assistant along with 10 yuan (US$1.5) as the opening fee.

Some banks charge 15 yuan for a bank card, such as The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC). Whenever you get the card, you will be asked to set a six digit pin. For internet banking, the password needs to be changed online to a pin with numbers and letters once you get home. Don't forget it.

Here are some other tips:

1.Many foreigners assume that Bank of China sounds like the most reliable bank, yet it doesn't provide the best customer service. ICBC and Merchant's Bank tend to get better reviews.

2.Bank branches which are near embassies, universities or central business districts are more likely to provide English service.

3.It is best to open an account at a branch near your home, since there are some services that require you to turn up at the specific branch where you open your account, such as resetting the password.

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