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Planning to move abroad for work, studies or relocation? Don't let banking and financial transactions hold you back. An international bank account or an overseas bank account is a secure and convenient way to conduct banking and financial transactions in the local currency of your destination country. Residents moving abroad on permanent residency or work/study visas (with a validity for more than six months), can open international bank accounts.
Benefits of opening an international bank account
An international bank account facilitates seamless banking in a foreign country by providing a variety of features and benefits which may include:An international bank account facilitates seamless banking in a foreign country by providing a variety of features and benefits which may include:
Account opening before you move overseas.
Flexibility to deposit funds into your account up to permissible limits
Proof of funds certificate from an overseas bank which can assist in visa application
You can avail below listed benefits after arrival in a new country after fulfilling applicable banking regulations and regulatory requirements
Transfer of funds to any bank in India or overseas.
Online bill payments, standing instructions, and direct debit facilities
Cash withdrawal from ATMs in the local currency of your destination country.
You can fund this account from your resident savings account before moving abroad. All credits to your international bank account from India should be made in accordance with the prevailing Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) regulations and the outward remittance limits defined under the prevailing Liberalised Remittance Scheme (LRS) regulations.
What is LRS?
Under the prevailing LRS regulations, residents can remit funds overseas up to USD 250,000 per Financial Year (April-March). This money can be sent for various reasons like travel, studies, or investments. Individuals can use this scheme; however, companies cannot use this scheme to send money abroad.
Types of overseas bank accounts
Certain banks provide migrating students and young professionals from India the convenience of opening country-specific accounts digitally, while they are still in India.
For instance, ICICI Bank UK offers the advantage of opening Home Vantage Current Account completely digitally and instantly using ICICI Bank UK iMobile Pay. You can open this account while you are still in India or from the UK. You also get access to internet banking, debit card, and mobile banking.
Similarly, ICICI Bank Hello Canada offers Permanent Residents (PR) and work permit holders the convenience of opening a Canadian chequing account prior to moving to Canada. ICICI Bank India customers can also open a Canadian savings account in their home country before their move. ICICI Bank Canada has collaborated with Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) to make it easier for newcomers (PR, study and work permit holders) to help settle in Canada by giving them access to their products. This collaboration provides account holders, access to over 1,200 RBC branches and 4,200 RBC ATMs across Canada, an RBC credit card with a limit up to CAD 15,000 plus other exclusive offers.
Opening an international bank account*
You must get in touch with your bank in India to open your international bank account based on the destination you are moving to. Banks provide country-specific accounts maintained in your destination’s local currency.
You can choose to open your international bank account online by visiting your bank’s website and submitting the application form with the Know Your Customer (KYC) documents. Upon successful completion and verification of your application, your account will be opened.
Alternatively, you can visit your bank’s branch in India and submit the application form along with the self-attested photocopies of:
- Valid Indian passport
- Valid student visa/ work visa/permanent resident visa
- Address proof: Aadhaar card
- Letter from university confirming admission/letter from employer/confirmation of permanent residence
Post a successful account opening, the bank will deliver the welcome letter, debit card and internet banking details.
ICICI Bank Hello Canada Account, enables you to apply for your international bank account digitally with minimal documentation such as identity proof, passport copy and visa copy. Upon landing in Canada, account activation can also be done online. The Bank’s collaboration with RBC also makes account opening with RBC easy.
*This is a typical process for opening an international bank account and may vary from bank to bank and country to country. Some banks may also require you to make an initial deposit to open the account.
As an individual who is relocating abroad on a long-term basis, opening an international bank account can be a wise decision. You can make transfers to other bank accounts, make deposits, and access funds in the local currency of your destination country. If you are making frequent international transactions, it helps you save money by avoiding high currency conversion fees. Many banks now offer the ability to open an international bank account online. You should consult your bank for more details.
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The contents of this article/infographic are meant solely for informational purposes. The contents are generic in nature and are not intended to serve as a substitute for specific advice on any matter whatsoever. The information is subject to updation, completion and verification and the applicable norms may keep changing materially from time to time. This information is also not intended for distribution or use by any person in any jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to applicable laws or would subject ICICI Bank Limited/its affiliates to any licensing or registration requirements. ICICI Bank Limited/its affiliates and their representatives shall not be liable for any direct or indirect losses or liability incurred arising in connection with any decision taken by any person on the basis of this content. Please conduct your own due diligence and consult your financial advisor before making any decision. Terms and conditions of ICICI Bank and third parties apply. ICICI Bank is not responsible for third party services. Nothing contained herein shall constitute or be deemed to constitute an advice, invitation or solicitation to avail any products/ services of third parties.