Can I open a bank account in Australia and start depositing money before I move in?
Yes, you can open a bank account in Australia and start depositing money before you move into Australia. Almost all of the major banks let you open a bank account online while you are at your home country and they have tailor made banking arrangements for international students and migrants. You don’t even require an Australian address. All of the major Banks have online and mobile app banking. You may be able to deposit money but not withdraw.
Such accounts will be valid for a year and as soon as you arrive in Australia you should visit the branch and handover your ID proofs. Each ID proof has a valid score called points and your ID should add up to 100 points to process the bank account further. Almost all transactions that you do in Australia would require a valid ID proof preferably your Passport or Driver's License or any other.
Big four Banks in Australia
Banking in Australia is dominated by four major banks:
- Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA)
- Westpac Banking Corporation
- Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ)
- National Australia Bank (NAB)
Also, the major foreign banks like HSBC, Citibank & ING have operations in Australia in the retail sector. Banks may even have bilingual staff to help you through and most of the ATMs are language enabled.
Most of the banks do not charge a service fee for the initial 12 (twelve) months. If you are a full-time student or is under the age of 21 (twenty-one) most banks would not charge a monthly service fee. Most of the withdrawals are charge free in Australia.
Debit cards & withdrawing money while in Home country
Most of the bank accounts come with an ATM card and you wouldn’t be charged for withdrawing money in Australia from your account through debit card from any of the major bank ATM’s. Most of the banks have tie up with other banks in Australia as well as banks internationally; hence you need not pay a fee while using your debit card internationally as well. But you should be aware that most of the banks only have tie up with a very few banks internationally and if you are travelling you should check with your bank and keep a list of foreign banks that they are tied up with.