Opening a Bank Account
Soon after you arrive in UK, you will need to access money to pay for rent, living expenses and tuition fees. Many students bring a credit card, which has been issued in their own country and use it to pay for items and get cash from their bank in their home country. Check with your bank before leaving home that you will be able to use your credit card at cash dispensers (ATMs) in the UK.
If you are in the UK for more than a few months, you will probably need to open a bank account. Ask for advice from your own bank before leaving home as they may have a special arrangement with a bank in the UK.
It may take two to three weeks to open an account, so make sure you have access to any money you will need during this period. Bring traveller’s cheques or a bank draft with you to avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Most international students can open a bank account but the types of accounts vary so please check what each bank account offers before deciding. However, please note that no account will provide you with an ‘overdraft’ facility (to borrow money from a bank). Students who are in the UK for less than six months may find it difficult to open any type of bank account.
To open a bank account you need to be in the UK, and you will be asked to provide certain documentary proof.
Make sure when you open an account that you understand the bank charges that apply to your account. Some bank accounts may make you pay a fee if your account does not always have a certain amount of money kept in it at all times. Other bank accounts charge a standard monthly subscription.
When you arrive in UK, the Student Welfare Officer will give you more information about where you can open an account in UK.