Opening a bank account in Thailand
The Bank of Thailand promotes sound corporate governance and risk management in the banking sector while adhering rigorously to the principles of an effective supervisory process and transparency in its pursuit of a strong, resilient, and competitive financial system.
Your daily routine and financial planning will be heavily influenced by opening a bank account in Thailand. Having one gives you a dependable means to access money and move it about. It becomes quick and simple to do things like go shopping, pay bills, and be paid. So why are you still waiting? Open a bank account in Thailand right now, and you'll soon have more time to appreciate this beautiful country.
What different bank choices available for people in Thailand?
Thai Banking system have so many alternatives makes it challenging to register a bank account in Thailand. We have outlined the advantages of the most well-known Thai banks in order to make your section shorter.
A list of reliable Thai banks is provided below:
- Bangkok Bank:Bangkok Bank, the largest bank in Thailand, is particularly hospitable to foreigners and has more than 1,200 local branches in addition to the largest network of Thai banks overseas. Additionally, international money transfers are simple to perform and offer a favourable exchange rate. Bangkok Bank is Baan (Been) Thai's suggested option for expats since our clients frequently comment on how pleased they are with their customer service experiences there.
- Kasikorn Bank (KBank): The fourth-largest bank in Thailand, Kasikorn welcomes foreigners and has a vast network of branches and ATMs. Additionally, the bank provides simple mobile banking and quick international money transfers. Typically, one of the simpler accounts to start is Kasikorn.
- Siam Commercial Bank (SCB): A sizable branch network, top-notch insurance options, and an intuitive mobile app are all provided by SCB. The bank also has a modest entrance requirement for opening an account. Non-residents and expatriates frequently only require a passport and a deposit.
- Krung Thai Bank (KTB): Krung Thai, a government-owned bank, is the second-largest bank in the nation with more than 1,200 domestic locations. It's simple to open an account at Krung Thai since normally not much documentation is needed.
- CIMB Bank: The tenth largest commercial bank in the nation is CIMB, formerly Bank Thai. They provide a wide range of insurance coverage, and foreign nationals with a tourist visa can create an account.
- Krungsri (BAY): Important reminder: When visiting the aforementioned banks, be sure to let them know why you are in Thailand. They can recommend the appropriate bank account to create and services to utilise based on whether you are employed or retired.
Other alternatives include
- Bangkok Bank (BBL)
- Kiatnakin Bank (KK)
- TMB Thanachart Bank (TTB)
Types of banks
You must first determine the sort of account you require before you can open one. Here are three typical Thai bank accounts, listed in order from simplest to open to most challenging.
- Saving account: A savings account, the most popular kind of bank account in Thailand, gives you a debit card and passbook, often known as a bank book, which records transactions.
- Current account: A debit card that may be used at ATMs is provided by both a current account (also known as a checking account) and a savings account. The only major distinction is that a current account gives you a chequebook rather than a passbook. For opening a current account, you need to have a work permit.
- Fixed-term account:The interest rate on this sort of account is higher than the alternatives mentioned above, although it is not necessarily the same for foreigners and Thai nationals.
- Foreign currency account
What is the eligibility criteria?
If you wish to open a bank account in Thailand, be sure you meet the requirements listed below:
- Applicants who presently have short-stay visas or visas exempt from the requirement for a visa;
- Candidates who are already present in Thailand on a non-immigrant visa or a stay extension.
Advantages of opening a bank account in Thailand
Opening a bank account in Thailand offers foreigners several benefits, including the following:
- There are no ATM withdrawal fees to pay;
- There is no conversion rate cost;
- It will get you access to a Thai debit card;
- It will make it simple for you to move money into and out of Thailand;
- It will assist you in obtaining a long-stay visa.
How banking in Thailand is different
In comparison to banks in your nation, Thai banks probably operate differently. Here are some significant distinctions.
- One account is usually enough: Most expats have savings and bank accounts back home, so you probably do too. However, a savings account suffices most of the time in Thailand. The majority of expats don't utilize checks here since it's more difficult to obtain a current account and is probably not worth the trouble.
- Branches matter: Each bank branch runs autonomously, and each branch may have different policies. While all branches adhere to the same procedures, certain branches are friendlier to foreigners than others. It does not follow that you will obtain the same service or require the same papers at another office just because you had a simple experience there. However, English will be stronger in expat and tourist regions. The quality of English might also vary substantially.
- Physical branch visits are common: Although all banks now provide applications and online banking, these tools' utility can often be constrained. You'll need to go to a branch for a surprising number of your banking needs, such as establishing an account, and frequently for more complicated transactions.
- Signatures are often required: Get ready for a marathon with a signature. You can be required to sign several paperwork, even for simple tasks like withdrawals. A copy of your passport, or perhaps many copies, are frequently included with this. Although having everyone sign may seem overkill, be courteous. In Thailand, physical paper copies are the norm, thus the bank representatives are only performing their duties.
- Debit cards can’t always be used online: International retailers don't always accept Thai ATM/debit cards for online payments. Some banks offer virtual credit cards through their online application as a workaround, and these should be recognized. A credit card application at your bank, which will be widely recognized by internet merchants, is an additional choice.
- ATMs are feature-rich: Many of your banking tasks, including updating your bank account information, paying bills, transferring money, and more, may be completed with an ATM card. However, be careful since certain ATMs may discharge your cash before giving your card back. Due to this, a lot of foreigners take their cash and depart without retrieving their cards from the machine.
Required documents for opening a bank account in Thailand
You must present the following documents, depending on your situation in Thailand:
- A duplicate copy of your visa
- A duplicate copy of your passport
- Information about your home, such as a lease or rental agreement
- A letter from your company attesting to your employment status in Thailand and stating your title;
- A letter of recommendation, preferably from the embassy or the bank where you have an account in your country of origin.
How to open corporate bank account in Thailand?
Here is a list of every need a Thai business must meet in order to create a corporate bank account in Thailand:
- Legal documents, such as a Certificate of Company Registration (dated no more than one month ago) verifies the identities of the directors, managing partners, and authorized directors.
- Identity documents, such as a Citizen ID card or another ID card, and residence registration of authorized person(s).
- A copy of the shareholder registration certificate (Bor or Jor 3), attesting to the company seal or any updated registration information (Bor or Jor 4).
- Information about the board meeting that approved the account establishment and named the signatories for payments using the business seal.
- A letter of authority from the legal person's authorized representative(s), if the other person is also authorized to withdraw the findings.
How to open corporate bank account in Thailand?
Here is a list of every prerequisite a foreign-registered business must meet in order to create a corporate bank account in Thailand:
- Minutes of the Board Meeting authorizing the account's opening, naming the signatories for payments, and authorizing the account's termination.
- Incorporation Certificate
- Association Memorandum and Articles
- The grantee's passport and a power of attorney (needed if the signatory is not a director of the business).
- The directors' and authorized people's passports. If a shareholder owns more than 25% of the stock of the company.
It's crucial to keep in mind that every page of the business's documents must be notarized and attested by the Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate in the nation where the company is registered. However, no more than six (6) months may pass between the issie (issue) date and the expiration date.
What is banking fees in Thailand?
If you use the ATM at your bank, conversion rate and ATM withdrawal costs are often waived. Some banks might be able to waive some costs if you don't have a work visa or if you know you won't be staying in Thailand for a long time (between 3 and 7 months).
In regards to all of those extra banking charges, they probably won't be the same as what you're accustomed to in the UK. To avoid receiving any unpleasant surprises, you must thoroughly check your account's terms and conditions. What to watch out for includes:
- Card costs, including a 100 THB or more card admission charge and a 250 THB or more card annual fee
- Card transaction fees, which might change based on whether you're transacting within a banking region or not.
- Fees for using an ATM abroad, which may be as high as 100 THB in addition to operator fees
- Foreign transaction fees, which typically amount to 2.5% of each foreign currency transaction.
- Domestic transfer costs, which vary based on the speed of service and the amount you send.
- Potentially high international transfer fees. Later, I'll talk more about that.