Cyprus is a country found in Europe and it is an amazing place to live and invest due to its favorable weather, low taxes and its diverse culture. It has been noticed that most of the people living in Cyprus are British, Turkish, Greek and Russians.
The excellent living conditions in Cyprus are stands as an advantage to many workers, students, investors and retiree. You can decide to live in one its cities such as Nicosia which is the capital of Cyprus.
Are you planning to move to Cyprus to further your studies, invest or as a worker? Then you will obviously need a bank account that will help you manage your finances once in the country. In this article, I will show you how to open a bank account in Cyprus alongside what you will need throughout the procedure.
But before letting you know how to open a bank account in Cyprus, let us see how the banking system in Cyprus looks like.
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Banking System in Cyprus
The Cypriot banking system is comprised of the National Bank, which not only authorizes but also supervises the other banks operating in the country. Private national banks are the most common types of banks in Cyprus, but foreign banks also have branches and representative offices there.
There are currently several local and foreign banks operating throughout the country. Those looking to open bank accounts in Cyprus have a variety of options in this regard.
When it comes to deciding which bank to open an account with, it is important to understand that most banks provide similar services, with the main difference being the fees and other charges associated with various transactions completed with the respective bank.
Most of the banks in Cyprus have online banking and you are able to make use of this online banking even outside the normal banking hours.
You can also make use of this to check your account balance, change personal details or make cash transfers. If you encounter any complicated transaction, you will have to visit the bank for some minimum amount of help.
Types of Bank Accounts which can be Setup in Cyprus
Services offered by banks in Cyprus might seem similar but each bank offers its own services and one of the most common services offered by banks in Cyprus is the possibility of you choosing the types of bank account to open.
There are personal and Employment bank accounts for individuals while companies or firms can set up corporate bank accounts. For those running e-commerce and other types of online businesses, you have the option of opening a merchant account to manage the transactions of their online business. Individuals can also decide to open a savings account in Cyprus even though this type of account is mostly set up by individuals interested in management solutions.
Above are the most popular types of bank accounts options that you have in Cyprus but is still another category of bank account which is set up by those who open offshore companies in Cyprus- this account is known as the offshore account.
Documents Needed to Open a Bank Account in Cyprus
When you've compared account options and are ready to open an account, it's time to gather your documentation. The process of opening a bank account in Cyprus is relatively simple, but you will need to bring paperwork with you to your appointment.
Well, the procedure to open a bank account in Cyprus is straightforward regardless of the fact whether you are a non resident or resident. You will realize that most of the bank's staffs here speaks English so you will be needing the below documents to open an account:
- Expected Turnover
- Why you need the bank account
- Proof of identity which is by use of passport or ID
- Proof of Residency which can be a Utility bill
- Reference letter from you home bank to show how you behave with banks.
If you want to open a bank account for a company in Cyprus, then you will have to provide the incorporation documents and other documents by its shareholders.
After you have presented your documents, a bank advisor will assist you in opening the account. The procedure entails filling out various forms, and it does not take long to complete. After you've signed everything, you'll receive your debit and/or credit card.
As soon as your account is activated, it is often advisable that you make a copy of the terms and conditions to take home with you in case any discrepancies arises later. They'll also be useful for information if you want to close the account early, as doing so can sometimes result in an early cancellation fee.
Advantages of Bank Accounts in Cyprus
A Cypriot bank account offers amazing benefits to its holders regardless of the fact if you are a natural human being or a company and the banking system in this country offers solutions to all types of clients. Below are some of the main advantages of opening a bank account in Cyprus:
- It provides you with online banking solutions
- You can submit your documents by fax or e-mail
- Low bank fees
- No minimum startup deposit is required
- A quick and hassle free opening process which might take up to 4 days
Can I Open a bank Account in Cyprus as a Non Resident?
Yes, it is possible to open a bank account as a non-resident, but you will most likely need a compelling reason, such as investment, employment, or a large number of references. You may be required to visit the branch, maintain a minimum balance, and the approval process may take up to two weeks.
This is difficult, but it is doable. You must provide a compelling reason, may be required to make investments, demonstrate your employment, and will undoubtedly require a few references from local residents.
You will be required to visit the branch, usually more than once, in order to maintain bank standards such as minimum balances. The approval process could take two weeks or more. Even if you provide everything, your application may still be rejected.
Can I Open a Bank Account in Cyprus from Abroad?
You might be a little surprise to hear that there is a possibility to open a bank account long before you arrive and it is amazing advantage that most of the banks have online banking applications. First of all, you can begin by filling in the your necessary details and then you complete the remaining process as soon as you arrive the country.
In case you are situated in the United Kingdom, the Bank of Cyprus has a branch in London and you can open an account whilst at home.
How to Open Bank Account in Cyprus
Regardless of the reason why you decide to choose Cyprus, either as a student, worker, or retiree, you will need to open a bank account in the country. Above are the requirements that you will need before beginning the process of opening a bank account in Cyprus.
When it comes to opening a bank account, you'll be relieved to know that there are many options! Most banks provide expat assistance and have English-speaking representatives who can help you navigate the financial system. This is useful for learning about the various products and services available, such as account setup, international transfers, and loans.
You are able to choose your bank based on many reasons and below I will provide you with the best bank in Cyprus which you can consider opening a bank account with.
Best Banks in Cyprus
There exist numerous international banks in Cyprus and below are some of the banks you can consider opening an account with.
1. Bank of Cyprus
Bank of Cyprus is actually the largest bank in Cyprus with 121 branches in Cyprus, 4 in the United Kingdom and 1 in Romania. Also, this bank has representative offices in Greece, China, Ukraine and Russia.
Bank of Cyprus offers its clients with many products such as
- Online banking
- Visa credit available in Classic, gold and platinum options
- Visa prepaid
- Visa credit available in 3
- Mobile, app and SMS banking
Aside from these, the bank has 18 to 25 student package and 18 to 25 new package. There is a possibility for you to make contactless payments via Tagpay and you must not carry cash and cards around since it has contactless Visa card found inside a wearable device.
2. Hellenic Bank
Here comes the second largest bank in Cyprus with its 68 branches and Hellenic Bank offer the following services to its customers:
- Student pack which is an exceptional offer for students in Cyprus owning or wishing to open a bank account with them
- Numerous credit card options such as Visa Gold, Mastercard and Mastercard Platinum
- Current account opening that comes with a debit card an overdraft limit
- A student pack for people between 18 to 26 years
- A Pay band device that is worn like a wrist band and acts like a debit card
Well those are the main services provided by Hellenic bank so its an amazing option for those wanting to open a bank account in Cyprus especially for international students since the banks offer student packages.
3. Eurobank Cyprus
Eurobank offers specialized services and provides all account types and cards. Eurobank features among the best banks in Cyprus and the provides their customers with the following services.
- Online banking which allows you to be able to pay bills to 3rd parties
- Visa gold contactless credit card that comes with free travel insurance and purchase security
- Eurobank has a contactless debit card that supports SMS alerts. There are some selected ATMs that allows you to withdraw cash for free
- It provides online banking and e statements that are accessible in English and Russian
4. Astro Bank
Astro Bank previously known as Piraeus Bank and it offers the following products and services to its customers.
- This bank offers youth accounts for people between 14 and 26 years. This account has free cash withdrawals and no annual fees which is an amazing advantage for those considering to open a bank account with them.
- Savings and Notice accounts- A notice account allows you to save money and earn some interest according to the amount of money that you have saved.
- A platinum Visa debit card that can be linked to a maximum number of 4 current and savings account.
Astro Bank also stands as an amazing bank option for expats in Cyprus.
5. Alpha Bank
Alpha Bank is also among the largest banks in Cyprus with several branches and ATMs in Cyprus. Most of the services provided by this bank are available in English. Online banking and various accounts such as savings and current accounts are among the services it provides to its customers. Before you arrive in Cyprus, you can begin opening your account online.
Can I Open a Bank Account in Cyprus Online?
In the recent few years, the Cyprus banking system has gone through numerous transitions for the better and modernization was one of the national banks most important objective which is the main reason why there is a possibility that you can start the procedure of opening a bank account online.
Foreign individuals and investors who are interested in establishing businesses in Cyprus can begin the process before arriving in the country. This is a significant advantage over other European countries where the procedure is longer and the foreign citizen must remain in the country throughout the process.
Who is Eligible to Open a Bank Account in Cyprus ?
There is no official document in Cyprus that specifies that only certain group of individuals of able to open a bank account in Cyprus and so for this reason, the National Bank of Cyprus allows both Cypriot, foreign individuals and companies to set up bank accounts in Cyprus for several reasons.
Regardless of the type of bank account that you need, you have to submit some documents to your selected bank. In Cyprus, both individuals and companies have total liberty in choosing the bank that they want to work with.
Final Thoughts on How to Open a Bank Account in Cyprus
Are you planning to move to Cyprus to further your studies, invest or as a worker? Then you will obviously need a bank account that will help you manage your finances once in the country.
In this article, I have outlined the various requirements to open a bank account in Cyprus alongside the best banks that you will find in Cyprus so it is left on to you to select the bank that suits you best in order to open a bank account with them.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Can a foreigner open a bank account in Cyprus?
Yes, it is feasible to create a bank account when you are a non-resident, but you probably need a solid justification, such as an investment, a job offer, or a ton of references. You might need to visit the branch, maintain a certain balance, and the approval process could take two weeks.
What documents do you need to open a bank account in Cyprus?
Passport Copy. Recent utility bill as proof of address not older than 3 months. Bank/Financial institution reference letter not older than 3 months. Detailed CV.
Can I open a Cyprus bank account from the UK?
In order to open an account in Cyprus, you don't need to have a residency - all you will be asked for is a set of documents, including: Passport or a valid identity card. A reference from the bank in your home country. Proof of address.