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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all.

Does anyone know the answer to this question? Do you have to be resident in the UAE to be able to open a Bank Account there?

I'm coming over for a couple weeks before I actually leave the UK for good and wondered whether I could have an account without being resident (just yet!)
 

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Of course I know the answer ;)

Most banks require you to have residency, but ME Bank will allow you to open a savings account without a visa. You don't get a cheque book or debit card, but would get an ATM card.

www.me.ae

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
As if I thought you wouldn't!!!:clap2:

Thank you.

Of course I know the answer ;)

Most banks require you to have residency, but ME Bank will allow you to open a savings account without a visa. You don't get a cheque book or debit card, but would get an ATM card.

www.me.ae

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Hi all.

Does anyone know the answer to this question? Do you have to be resident in the UAE to be able to open a Bank Account there?

I'm coming over for a couple weeks before I actually leave the UK for good and wondered whether I could have an account without being resident (just yet!)
I contacted Lloyds UAE branch before I came over. With some docuements, including a letter from my employer, they let me open one as soon as I arrived - before my visa was granted. I did not previously have an account with them.

I did have to open the account over here, but I had a debit card, current and savings account about 10 days after landing.

I would contact them and ask. If you have questions, let me know and I can dig out the name.
 

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We had a letter from the wifes comp[any stating the visa was in the process and they let us open accounts at HSBC and Emirates. But you will not beable to get car loans untill you have had at least 2 months with them, no matter what your income is.
 

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Emirates bank will also give you an account without residency, you do not get a cheque book but you do get debit card e.t.c
 

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It's actually against UAE Central Bank regulations to issue a cheque book to anyone without a residency visa. But as others have said you can open a basic savings account with ATM access no problems. Some big banks will even open it for you before you arrive so that it is waiting when you get here.

I hope you have fun here!
 

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along this line... and recommendations on which bank to go with? I am thinking of going with HSBC, it's the only one that I can see has a branch in SA as well, not too sure if that is a valid enough point to make the decision on.

Should I ask my employer? Would they have preferences?
 

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I opened up a US Dollar and Dirham account with HSBC in early 2009. They will only give you a saving account(no chequing) mind you but you do get debit cards. Apart from filling out the paperwork - you don't need anything else special. EXCEPT for a no objection letter which is a common prerequsite that everyone seems to ask for. It can be odd - I already have an HSBC account in Canada - why would I need a NOL from HSBC back in Canada to open a similar account in Dubai exactly - !

I would advise that you use the same bank you have in SA - makes everything easier.
 

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I opened up a US Dollar and Dirham account with HSBC in early 2009. They will only give you a saving account(no chequing) mind you but you do get debit cards. Apart from filling out the paperwork - you don't need anything else special. EXCEPT for a no objection letter which is a common prerequsite that everyone seems to ask for. It can be odd - I already have an HSBC account in Canada - why would I need a NOL from HSBC back in Canada to open a similar account in Dubai exactly - !

I would advise that you use the same bank you have in SA - makes everything easier.
Thanks for the advise. I think HSBC is the only bank that is both in SA and UAE. My bank is a South African bank. I will try go in and speak to them before I go, they might suggest a bank that they partner with.

What is a no objection letter? How would I get one from my bank?
 

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Thanks for the advise. I think HSBC is the only bank that is both in SA and UAE. My bank is a South African bank. I will try go in and speak to them before I go, they might suggest a bank that they partner with.

What is a no objection letter? How would I get one from my bank?
If you do go to HSBC then they can definately pre-open an account for you. The correct department you want is called the international banking centre. It's mainly for Premier customers but if you ask then any customer can use the service (well usually anyway - and maybe for a fee - it is slighty differnent in different countries).

A no objection letter is pretty much as it says...a letter that states there are no objections to whatever it is you are doing. They a common requirement here. And yes I work for HSBC so I'm not going to actually recommend them as I am bias ;) I didn't need a no objection letter to open my savings account before I arrived here. But as staff it might be diffent. Suggest you speak to them and they'll tell you what you need which is likely to be the account opening forms and your passport.

Good luck.
 

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along this line... and recommendations on which bank to go with? I am thinking of going with HSBC, it's the only one that I can see has a branch in SA as well, not too sure if that is a valid enough point to make the decision on.

Should I ask my employer? Would they have preferences?

Amtobi, I would suggest banking with your employers bank. Reason being it can take a day or two longer to receive your money if you are with someone else.

HSBC opened an account for me the day I arrived without too much hassle - a rep even came to my office and handed over a cash card there and then! I'm not suggesting HSBC though. They're just as crap as any other bank I've dealt with (Barclays, Natwest etc back home where employees don't have half a brain either!). I loaded a credit card with cash and they charged me a "handling fee" about 12 times. It's all a big con out here.
 

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We had a letter from the wifes comp[any stating the visa was in the process and they let us open accounts at HSBC and Emirates. But you will not beable to get car loans until you have had at least 2 months with them, no matter what your income is.
How has your experience with HSBC treated you? Do you have difficulty transferring cash back to the US?

It seems that people aren't too fond of the retail operations at all banks in the UAE, lack customer service, poor online access...etc...relocating in '10, and need to determine which bank to use.

thx,

88
 
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