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Opening a Bank Account

Whilst you are working in the UK, you will need to have a bank account set up in your name or your Limited Company name to ensure you receive your earnings. These are "relatively" easy to open. You may be requested to provide the following information:

- Proof of employment.

- Proof of UK address.

- Two forms of identification

- Copies of recent bank statements (home country)

As a precaution, a reference from your bank in your home country will always provide solid evidence of your banking history. Most UK banks recognise international bankcards provided they have an international symbol on it, such as Cirrus or Visa, which will allow you to readily access your accounts and funds in most locations. We advise that you check with your bank that you have access to International and Internet banking processes before your departure.

Possibly the best thing to do is open an account from your country with a bank that is situated in London, that way you should be able to transfer accounts easily. Barclays, HSBC, CitiBank , Lloyds TSB, Natwest are operating in London

Sometimes it is not that easy to get a bank account, e.g. a proof of address?

Neither passport nor driving licence will be accepted on its own, because there is no address on it. You need an official letter showing your name and your home address. This can be a utility bill or a payslip from your employer.

But how to proof your address if you live in a flatshare or pay my rent "all-inclusive" and therefore do not get any bills? And mostly you need the bank account BEFORE you start work.

* If you have got a landline in your flatshare, ask the one who owns it to add your name to the bill. This can easily be done by just a phone call to BT. Next time the bill will show both names on the address. So make sure to refuse the Ebilling option from BT.

The only drawback might be that a BT bill only comes every 3 months. So you might have to wait quite a while.

* As a resident you are entitled for the local elections. Go to the Council of the area where you live and fill out a form to be added to the electorial list. After a few days you will get an official letter from the council confirming that you are now on the list. And THIS letter can be used as proof of address. Easy, quick and free of charge.

If you cannot open your account online. It is better to go to the smaller branches rather than the big and busy ones in the city centre.

Use a Prepaid Credit/Debit Card instead

A new system appeared in the UK.

The Prepaid Credit/ Debit Card. You don't need a bank account. And you can get a Mastercard and/ or Maestro in less than a week. No complicated application form. 100% ACCEPTANCE.

You can obviously pay with your card but you can also ask your employer to pay your salary onto the card.

For a Gold Mastercard or for a Maestro card (you can click here)

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