How to Open Bank Account in Spain

Opening a Bank Account in Spain 

The Spanish banking system is internationalized. There are about 141 private banks, of which 80 have foreign ownership. There are many regional savings and cooperative banks too. The Banco de Espana is the regulatory bank for the Spanish banking sector. 

Why Open a Bank Account in Spain?

Having a bank account makes it easy not just to perform everyday financial transactions such as paying utility bills but also for bigger financial purposes such as getting a mortgage. Although it is possible to perform banking transactions through your overseas bank account, but there may be extra charges that you may incur. There are many Spanish banks that let you open an account before you move in to stay here. 

If you are an ex-pat in Spain, then here is how you can go about opening a bank account.

Types of Bank Accounts in Spain 

  • Current Account – meant for everyday banking transactions 
  • Savings Account – meant for savings, investment in shares or funds
  • Digital Account – for online banking through sites and apps
  • Non-Resident Account – usually Euro-based accounts meant for ex-pats

Offshore Bank Accounts 

Offshore bank accounts are ones that are held by the holder outside their country. People working abroad who require transferring money between countries usually have offshore bank accounts. Such accounts offer the benefits of paying less tax. Some common types of accounts are savings account, variable rate account and current account (high-street banks only). 

Some Banks in Spain

Some famous banks providing best services in Spain are 

  • Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA)
  • Banco Sabadell
  • Santander

If you want to open an account with one of the international bank's having a branch in Spain, then you can choose from:

  • Citibank
  • HSBC
  • ING
  • Deutsche Bank 
  • Barclays

Types of Banking Services in Spain 

Globally, banks offer similar types of services and the Spanish banks are no exception. Some common services include account opening, mortgages, loans, overdrafts, debit and credit cards, insurance, money transfers (nationally and internationally).

You can also consider cheaper and other alternative sources to make international transfers such as Moneycorp, Wise, CurrencyFair, WorldRemit, etc.

How to Open a Bank Account in Spain 

Opening a bank account may require just 1 to 5 days. Most banks in Spain operate in the hours 9:00 am to 2:00 pm from Monday to Saturday. Make sure you have a friend who is fluent in Spanish as English-speaking staff are limited in Spanish banks. The main documents required for opening an account include:

  • Identity proof (such as a passport or any other that is requested by the bank)
  • Número De Identificación De Extranjeros or the Spanish foreigner identification number and certificate
  • Address proof
  • Proof of employment status such as employment contract, student identity card, or document for being unemployed

If any of your documents are not in Spanish, then you need to use an Apostille stamp to authenticate it. 

How to Open Business Bank Account in Spain 

Both small and large business owners can open a business account in Spain. Along with the standard documents, they also require producing official company documents, business address, and at least two signatories. Depending on the services extended for the business account, you may require keeping a minimum deposit and certain extra fees.

How to Open Bank Account from Abroad

If you wish to open a Spanish bank account before you move to Spain, then you must provide the bank with Certificado de no Residencia or a certificate proving that you are not a resident of Spain. This certificate can be obtained from a Spanish police station and usually takes about 10 days. This may be easy for people who spend a lot of time in Spain and know the area but are residents of a different country. However, there are some Spanish banks that will charge a nominal fee to get it done for you. 

You must also reveal to the bank that you would spend at least 183 days or more in Spain and become a resident here or have a minor child who is a Spanish resident or have a spouse as a Spanish resident or you are employed in Spain, or your business is established in Spain. 

How to Get Mobile or Digital Bank Account in Spain 

Only Spanish residents have access to internet banking. However, app-based digital banks like N26 and BUNQ that will enable anyone in Spain to use banking with internet. Most banks have their own mobile banking apps and websites that let you make online transactions. 

How to Open an Account for Children?

The process to open a bank account for children (junior savings account) is similar to the one that you would open for an adult. Parents need to provide their ID along with the child's ID. The parent is considered as the legal representative of the child's account till he or she reaches the age of 18. 

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