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Many Indian students and young professionals go abroad each year to pursue their dreams. As a parent, it is natural to be anxious about your child's well-being while they are away from home. This includes not only sending money abroad to your child, but also taking care of their other banking and financial needs.
Arush has recently got an employment opportunity in the United Kingdom (UK). His sister, Priyanka has got admission in a university in Canada. Their mother, Natasha wants to support them for their banking and financial needs.
Here are a few ways by which she can take care of her children’s banking and financial needs from India:
1. Set up international bank accounts
When Arush and Priyanka move abroad, they will need an overseas account for their day-to-day banking needs. Certain banks provide migrating students and young professionals the convenience of opening country-specific accounts digitally, while they are still in India.
For instance, ICICI Bank UK PLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of ICICI Bank Limited, offers the advantage of opening a UK Personal Bank Account (equivalent to a savings account in India) completely digitally and instantly using ICICI Bank UK iMobile Pay. Arush can open and apply for this account digitally and instantly, while he is in India or living in the UK, by downloading the ICICI Bank UK iMobile app, filling the online application form and scanning his original passport. He can choose to receive a debit card either at his UK address or his Indian address (if he is still in India). The debit card can be used across ATMs of any bank in the UK to withdraw cash, without any additional charges. Once the account is opened, he can instantly activate his internet and mobile banking. He can also choose to receive a debit card at his Indian address, while he is still in India. This will ensure that once he reaches UK, he can immediately start paying digitally for his daily requirements like cab rents, meals, groceries among others. Natasha who is a Resident Indian is also permitted to open a UK personal bank account and transfer funds basis permitted Liberalised Remittance Scheme (LRS) limits .
Likewise, Natasha can also explore ICICI Bank Hello Canada account for Priyanka who is going to Canada for her studies. Apart from university students, this account also 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.
Aspiring students who wish to take advantage of quick VISA process under the Canadian SDS program, can also apply through ICICI Bank Canada’s Student GIC Program (explained below).
ICICI Bank Canada has collaborated with RBC (Royal Bank of Canada) 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 like Priyanka, access to over 1,200 RBC branches and 4,200 RBC ATMs across Canada, an RBC credit card with a limit up to 15,000 CAD, plus other exclusive offers.
However, it's crucial to note that Natasha cannot open a joint international bank account with either Arush or Priyanka.
Mandatory requirements for student visa in Canada
Student GIC for Canada: Students applying through the Student Direct Stream (SDS) visa, must open a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) account with approved banks in Canada. A GIC is a fixed deposit that has a guaranteed rate of return over a fixed term and provides proof of funds required for the SDS student visa application. Funds can be transferred from the student or parent’s account. Once the account is funded, students shall receive an ‘Investment Balance Confirmation’ (IBC) Certificate which is to be used as proof of funds while applying for the student visa.
The funds from the GIC account are released to the student in instalments over the course of 10-12 months. This helps cover a part of their educational and living expenses while studying in Canada.
ICICI Bank Canada offers Student GIC account which gives students access to a dedicated digital platform, 24/7 contact center support and easy application process. Students can apply and open the account digitally and instantly, while they are still in India. ICICI Bank Canada has collaborated with RBC (Royal Bank of Canada) which provides Student GIC account holders access to over 1,200 RBC branches and 4,200 RBC ATM’s across Canada, an RBC credit card with a limit up to 2,000 CAD, automated monthly transfers from ICICI Bank Canada GIC to their RBC Student Account, plus other exclusive offers.
2. Set up NRI accounts
Arush and Priyanka, both have an option to open NRI accounts, such as Non-Resident Ordinary (NRO) account, Non-Resident External (NRE) account, and Foreign Currency Non-Resident Bank (FCNR(B)) accounts in India. These accounts will help Natasha and her children, Arush and Priyanka, with seamless money transfers between India and their country of residence.
Arush and Priyanka can appoint Natasha as a PoA/mandate holder, so that she can operate this account in India on their behalf to:
- Make investments
- Repay any outstanding loans
- Withdraw cash, issue cheques, and manage other financial needs.
Click here to read more on the benefits and process of adding joint holders on your NRI accounts.
3. Issuing and reloading forex cards for your child
Natasha’s children can purchase prepaid forex cards which have similar functionalities as that of a debit or a credit card. These cards can be easily reloaded remotely with money, from her bank account in India, thereby providing access to instant funds for her children. Further these cards help avoid unfavourable exchange rates and currency conversion fees. It will also help her children to make purchases abroad and withdraw cash in foreign currency from ATMs.
Natasha and her children can explore either of the two types of forex cards: Single-currency cards and Multi-currency cards. The latter allows deposit of various currencies in a single card.
ICICI Bank’s student forex card is widely accepted worldwide and gets delivered to your place of residence in India or abroad. Natasha can also reload money instantly using the iMobile Pay app.
4. Send money abroad to her children
As a parent, Natasha can make overseas money transfer to Arush and Priyanka in multiple ways, including:
- Making a wire transfer through the branch
- Online money transfer
- Cross border Unified Payments Interface (UPI) payments
It is important to note that the total amount that you can send to your child abroad cannot exceed USD 250,000 per Financial Year (April–March) as per the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) LRS.
To know more about outward remittances or transferring money overseas click here.
5. Manage any existing loans/renew insurance policies of her children
It can be difficult to manage existing loans and insurance premiums in India for your children living abroad. However, it is important to ensure that these financial obligations are met on time to maintain their credit history in India. Natasha should gather Arush and Priaynka’s financial information, including their loan account numbers, insurance policy details, bank statements etc. Once she has consolidated the relevant details and documentation, she should:
- Set up automatic payments for their loans and insurance premiums
- Explore if the coverage of their existing insurance policies can be extended to their country of residence. Further, if the policy allows, she can renew their existing travel and medical insurance policies
- Ask them to appoint her as a PoA or a mandate holder to operate any of their NRI accounts and make payments on their behalf
- Make regular payments to ensure continuance of their existing investments and insurance policies
6. Set up digital banking services for accounts held in India
Natasha should ensure that all of her children’s accounts have digital banking services (internet/mobile banking) enabled. Additionally, she should familiarise herself with the Do-it-Yourself (DIY) services that will allow her and her children to:
- Monitor account balances
- Make fund transfers
- Make payments for recurring bills/outstanding dues
- Make investments
- Make account updates and other servicing requests
You should help your child to set up appropriate bank accounts (international or NRI bank accounts), enable digital banking, and DIY services for all of them. Alternatively, your child can avail single/multiple currency forex cards. You can explore the efficient overseas money transfer options to meet your child’s financial needs. You should get in touch with your bank for more support.
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