How to open a US bank account as a non-resident?

by FlashDriveDT 123 replies
I live in Germany and would like to have a US bank account so I can get my amazon.com payments quicker and cheaper. (Amazon doesn't offer paypal or anything similar) I've done some googling and there's many services that offer to open one but I'm pretty wary of these sites.
http://www.google.com/search?q=open+...t+non-resident
I'd rather do it directly with a bank, even if its a little tedious.

So I would like to ask if there are any Warriors who live abroad and have succesfully opened a US account? Can anyone recommend a bank? Of course I'm looking for the easiest and most proficient application. What may come in handy for me is that I still have a valid US green card and even state ID (along with social security #). I could pretend that I'm still a resident and open a normal account but I don't want to lie. Besides, I'm sure the bank would need proof that I'm actually living in the states.

Thanks for any feebdack!
#main internet marketing discussion forum #account #bank #nonresident #open
  • Profile picture of the author edman
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  • Profile picture of the author Richard Tunnah
    Can't you just open a US denominated account at your local bank? Most major banks offer accounts in other major currencies or they do in the UK.

    Rich
  • Profile picture of the author riverchase
    Go to Bank of America or Chase site. You should find help there.
    Or just call them direct using your Skype.
    • Profile picture of the author Cyrus
      This is totally possible to make US bank account as a non-resident, I know at least four methods to make US Account. I and My Friends are using it from Months.
    • Profile picture of the author Lucille89Hall
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  • Profile picture of the author Adrian Cooper
    Originally Posted by FlashDriveDT View Post

    I live in Germany and would like to have a US bank account so I can get my amazon.com payments quicker and cheaper. (Amazon doesn't offer paypal or anything similar) I've done some googling and there's many services that offer to open one but I'm pretty wary of these sites.
    http://www.google.com/search?q=open+...t+non-resident
    I'd rather do it directly with a bank, even if its a little tedious.

    So I would like to ask if there are any Warriors who live abroad and have succesfully opened a US account? Can anyone recommend a bank? Of course I'm looking for the easiest and most proficient application. What may come in handy for me is that I still have a valid US green card and even state ID (along with social security #). I could pretend that I'm still a resident and open a normal account but I don't want to lie. Besides, I'm sure the bank would need proof that I'm actually living in the states.

    Thanks for any feebdack!
    Since 9/11 it is almost impossible for a non-US national to get a US bank account.

    In your case though with your credentials I am sure you could open an account if you could provide a US address even if a friend or relative.

    You may need to travel to the US in person though.
  • Profile picture of the author FlashDriveDT
    Hey Cyrus, could you let me know these methods. If you prefer, by PM. I just messaged you.

    I inquired with my german bank and they say it could only be done with a major international bank. And maybe Western Union. I'll have to look into that. As far as cashing in a check from the US I was told it's not advisable. It could take up to 8 weeks to clear and there's at least $100 fees involved! Yikes.

    From what I can tell opening/running a us bank account with a major international bank can be quite tricky - like a certain minimum transfer each month, plus monthly fees of at least $50. Oh well, I'm not giving up.
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  • Profile picture of the author activetrader
    If I am not mistaking all you need is a SS number and two forms of ID (one could be a DL and another a major credit card). When I came to the US on a student visa ten years ago I was able to get a SS card immediately; then I went to Bank of America and opened a bank account with no problems at all. Since then they've stopped issuing SS cards to students but I became a resident a long time ago. As long as you have a SS card, you can go and open an account and no one will ask if you live in the US permanently.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kris.Sm
    You definetly need SSN(Social Security Number) to open an account with any decent bank in US. The rest can be compramised like address proof etc..passport copy would be fine. May be if u know someone here close..get him / her open the account and later make in a joint account. after all the rest is all online banking..
    • Profile picture of the author marciayudkin
      If I am not mistaking all you need is a SS number and two forms of ID (one could be a DL and another a major credit card). When I came to the US on a student visa ten years ago I was able to get a SS card immediately; then I went to Bank of America and opened a bank account with no problems at all. Since then they've stopped issuing SS cards to students but I became a resident a long time ago. As long as you have a SS card, you can go and open an account and no one will ask if you live in the US permanently.
      Do NOT pay any attention to the above. Whatever was possible 10 years ago, things are totally different in the U.S. since 9/11. My 20-ish nephew is an American citizen but never lived in the U.S., and when he came here and tried to open up a bank account, you wouldn't believe the hoops he had to jump through. It took him three months to go through all the steps.

      Even to get a U.S. driver's license is much more difficult now.

      Your best bet is to open an account in U.S. dollars at a branch of a U.S. bank in your own country.

      Marcia Yudkin
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      Check out Marcia Yudkin's No-Hype Marketing Academy for courses on copywriting, publicity, infomarketing, marketing plans, naming, and branding - not to mention the popular "Marketing for Introverts" course.
  • Profile picture of the author pmlharry
    Can you share with us what kinds of fees would be payable for opening a US Bank Account as a non-US resident?

    And what about the options for withdrawing the money from the account? What's the easiest way to do it, and again what are the fees we can expect to pay per withdrawal?
    • Profile picture of the author Cyrus
      Originally Posted by pmlharry View Post

      Can you share with us what kinds of fees would be payable for opening a US Bank Account as a non-US resident?

      And what about the options for withdrawing the money from the account? What's the easiest way to do it, and again what are the fees we can expect to pay per withdrawal?
      Well fee depend upon bank's policy.. but usually they are high :rolleyes:

      Fee structure of one bank my friend used (First Bank of Delaware)

      $1000 initial deposit
      $200 account opening fee (this includes chequebook, debit card, account opening kit)
      Account Maintenance fee
      $500 Lawyer's fee who will every work for you from start to end.

      well this is just an example, some banks have high initial deposit like $10,000 and they charge % of amount on every transaction like paypal does.

      Second bank i used is probably a poor bank :p and approximately $500-$600 are more than enough to open a US bank account.
  • Profile picture of the author Smokey_Joe
    Well, judging by my own experience, the key here is having a social security number. I'm not a U.S. resident, but I worked in the U.S. two years ago - I had no problems whatsoever opening a bank account there (I still have it, btw). I don't know if the procedure is that easy via internet, but it's possible IMO. Check what they have at bankofamerica.com (or the site of any other major bank), you might have a lot of your questions answered.
  • Profile picture of the author Tyrus Antas
    How about starting a company and open a corporate bank account?

    Tyrus
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnHuizinga
    I opened a US bank account as a Canadian through my bank. They just happened to own an American bank and our bank rep set it up for us on the spot.
    Perhaps the bank you deal with doesn't have any American associate banks but there must be some who do.
    I see Deutsche Bank has many American locations. Maybe they're worth talking to.
    Welcome to Deutsche Bank!
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  • Profile picture of the author bigman1234
    you can open a US acct but the fees are $$ sometimes to maintain it .. most people have has success with Citibank .. see if they have a German correspondant bank
  • Profile picture of the author FlashDriveDT
    I will try to ask some "german-US" banks. But preferably because of the fees, I'm working on the option of having someone close in the US just open an account for me.
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  • Profile picture of the author lostpoet
    So Cyrus, what should we do to open a US a/c as non-residents?
  • Profile picture of the author lostpoet
    Hey, thanks Nathan

    Have you any experience with any of them?
  • Profile picture of the author morry
    I've done this before, but it wasn't cheap. I used a company called Nevada LLC or Wyoming LLC for $69 plus filing fees, Corp95 files your Nevada corporation or Wyoming Corporation for $69 plus filing fees. and they created a US corporation for me. Once I got that done, they went and spoke to Bank of America, who then let me open an account. I don't know how they did it, but it works fine. Might cost $1500 or so, but it can be done.

    Sean
  • Profile picture of the author Kris Turner
    I looked into this a few months back and found that it's virtually impossible to open a US bank account if you're a non-US resident.

    The only ones who would consider it need all kinds of things from you, including you taking a trip there with multiple forms of ID.

    Can't you just have your PayPal payments sent to your current bank? It seems to work for most people, and shouldn't really slow down things too much.
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  • Profile picture of the author lostpoet
    Hey, thanks you guys. You think HSBC could do it for me?
  • Profile picture of the author derekwong28
    I am in the process of opening a US bank account with HSBC at the moment. Our local branch in Hong Kong refered our request to their US international banking offices directly. So far, one of their officers have e-mailed back but it seems that they will need to talk to you directly by phone before they can take things further.

    Derek
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  • Profile picture of the author FrankPinch
    No problem, get an address in US (many ways to do so!) and open a bank account! I do this in many countries!
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