How to Open a Bank Account for People Moving to UAE

By Ruchi Gohri
  | Published: 07 September 2021

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If you are moving to a country, you would need an apartment to live in, a business to run and many other basic requirements to fulfil for a sound survival. All these tasks need you to pay upfront, for which you would need an active bank account. Owning a bank account in the UAE makes plenty of these tasks easier for you.

The banks in the UAE allow opening a bank account for three types of applicants – residents, non-residents and businesses. All these applicants need to provide different types of documents and fulfil different account opening formalities. 

In this post, we will take you through the documents required for opening a bank account in the UAE and the process you need to follow when opening one for yourself.

Essential Documents for Opening a Bank Account in the UAE

You must have all the essential documents gathered before you apply for opening a bank account in the UAE. To streamline the whole process, we have listed here the necessary documents you need to provide when opening a bank account. 

UAE residents and non-residents have a separate set of documents for opening a bank account in the UAE. Here is the list of documents required.

1. For UAE Residents

UAE residents are free to open any type of bank account, including savings, current, fixed deposit, investment account, etc. in the UAE. Here is the list of documents they need to provide.

  • Passport with residency visa – Original and a copy
  • An account opening form
  • Salary Certificate/Appointment Letter/Salary Slips to verify the employer and monthly income
    Note: The HR department of your company can help you get these documents.
  • Emirates ID – Original and a copy
    Note: The applicants who do not have the Emirates ID can submit a copy of the Emirates ID registration form they filled out while applying for one.

2. For Non-Residents

UAE Non-residents can open only a savings account in the UAE. Savings accounts in the UAE do not come with a chequebook. However, the applicants can request a debit card based on their financial requirements. 

Most savings accounts for non-residents come with minimum monthly salary requirements. The banks in the UAE may also run a background check for the non-residents or ask for a reference letter from the previous bank for verification.

In addition to the documents for UAE residents, the non-residents may also have to provide the following documents.

  • Utility bills (of the last three months)
  • Personal bank account statement from a bank based in the applicant’s country of origin (of the last six months)
  • A reference letter from the previous bank 
  • Details of the source of incoming funds

3. For Businesses Customers

If you are moving to UAE for business purposes, you first need to establish a company to open a bank account. Most business bank accounts in the UAE are current accounts that allow account holders to make unlimited daily/weekly/monthly transactions based on their financial preferences. 

Here is the list of essential documents you need to provide when opening a business bank account.

  • Trade License - Original and a copy
  • Share certificates
  • Certificate of registration
  • Company Memorandum and Articles of Association
  • Utility bills (of the last three months)
  • Existing contracts and agreements of the company – Original and a copy
  • Reference letters from business partners
  • Passport of all the shareholders and authorised signatories – Original and a copy

Let us take you through the process of opening a bank account in the UAE.

How to Open a Bank Account in the UAE

The applicants can open different types of bank accounts in the UAE based on their financial preferences. If they need a bank account to process their personal transactions, they can open a savings or current bank account. On the other hand, they can simply apply for a business bank account if they need to process business transactions.

Here are some simple steps to help you open a bank account in the UAE.

1. Gather the Essential Documents

To open a bank account in the UAE, you must have all the verification documents ready and organised in a file or a folder. If you have all the documents in place, it may take the least possible time to have a bank account opened and ready for use. Usually, the banks in the UAE take two business days in opening a bank account for the users.

2. Choose the Bank and the Account Type

You must analyse your financial needs and decide the type of bank account you want to open for yourself. Make sure you visit multiple banks’ websites and online portals to check their financial stability and market reputation. You must choose a bank account with a bank that has a good market reputation. Check the list of bank accounts available with your chosen bank and select the type of bank account as per your needs. Make sure you consider factors like interest rate, minimum balance requirement, monthly fee, etc. before you decide to open one.

3. Check the Account Opening Process

Most banks in the UAE allow you to open a bank account online, while others need you to visit the branch with all the essential documents and fulfil the account opening formalities. Make sure you check the account opening process with your preferred bank and apply accordingly.

4. Submit Your Application

Now that you have chosen the bank account and have all the essential documents handy, make no delay in applying for the same. You need to upload the required documents while filling in the online application form if applying for the bank account online. However, if applying offline, visit the bank’s branch, provide the required documents to the assigned bank’s representative, fill the application form and submit the same. 

5. Open the Bank Account

If you follow the procedure correctly and everything falls in the right place, opening a bank account may take two business days. Make sure you check with your bank the way you need to proceed. Most banks in the UAE deliver the welcome kit to your doorstep. And with others, you need to visit the branch to collect the same. 

Conclusion

When you are new to a country, finding the best-fit bank account that caters to all your financial needs is not easy. And this is where we come into the picture. We help you find the best bank account options that meet your financial needs and help you choose one of them.

Not just that! Our financial experts explain the benefits and features of your shortlisted bank accounts and take you through the entire account opening process.

Ruchi Gohri
Ruchi Gohri62 Posts

Senior Content Writer | She has a penchant for writing and with over 5 years of experience, she plays around with words elegantly, crafting simple content for all to read. In her free time, she loves her couch either to read or catch on to her sleep.