How to Open a Bank Account in France

Commercial banks in France are scarce; even you can count them on your fingers. Though, it can’t be denied that major banks in the world are constituted with offices in France, there are only few banks that can be accessed by ordinary citizens.

In France, you can open any bank account within a Commercial Bank but you have to go to the branch your address belongs.

Tip nr.1: bank account in French is: «Compte Bancaire,» but in France bank card is called «Carte Bleue» (abbreviated CB).

It is important to provide the correct address to the representative of the bank, because in France banks work a lot with mail and will send monthly bank statement to your home address by letters. If you change your address, remember to inform the bank, otherwise they will constantly send the envelopes were your old address was.

Tip nr.2: do not forget to submit your phone number to the bank, every online payment that you make will be authenticated by an SMS sent by the bank in advance. Declaring the phone number takes about 5 days and you must do it personally on the bank’s website.

If you wish to effectuate a bank transfer from the On-Line account, you will not be able to do this until you’ve registered your account with which you want to send money through completing a form on Online Banking account, this form must be printed and deposited in the mailbox of the branch where you opened your account. The procedure for activating international transfers takes about 24 hours or it can be activated immediately if you apply personally at the information desk of the bank.

Cash Withdrawal: you can withdraw cash directly from the bank, filling out a form, or you can use the ATMs of the bank. The point is that the maximum amount that can be extracted during one day is 300 Euro.

Tip nr.3: You can remove up to 500 Euro per day if to withdraw from the same ATM two amounts: one of 300 Euro and another of 200 Euro. In this way ATM will not have enough time to process the information that you have exceeded your maximum amount for that day.

The documents required to open a bank account:

ID card + copy;

The resident card (for students) or rental contract + copies;

Student Card (if applicable) + copy;

Below are some banks that would open a bank account to a foreigner: