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When you need to open a bank account in Australia, there are plenty of options to choose from. St George, recognised by a green dragon logo, is part of the larger Westpac group and one of the leading smaller retail banks.¹
If you are moving to Australia soon or looking to move your funds to a new bank, St George might have the right option for you. This article will take you through what types of accounts are available and how to open one.
|💸 Hold over 40 currencies in your account and spend at the mid-market exchange rate with the Wise card while abroad.
St George bank offers a full suite of banking products to personal, business and corporate customers. These include everyday transaction accounts, savings accounts, term deposits, credit cards, home loans and other loan products.¹
For most newcomers, the easiest account to open is either the everyday Complete Freedom account, a Maxi Saver account or an Incentive Saver account. We’ll compare what each of these accounts are and their features.²
The Complete Freedom account is St George’s option for an everyday transaction account that customers can manage and access their money.³ Some features that come with this account include²:
- A Visa Debit card
- Online banking portal and mobile banking app
- Access to “My Offers” rewards
- Real time transaction notifications
- Card locking and freezing
- Fraud protection
For those customers looking to easily move and save their money from the Complete Freedom account, here are the main differences between the two savings accounts available.
Customers can access an introductory bonus rate of 5.10% per annum for the first three months if applying online. This rate will revert down to 1.10% variable rate after the offer ends.⁴
Customers can open this account and access up to a variable rate of 5.00% per annum for customers who have less than $250,000 deposited. Currently new customers who apply online can access an extra 0.10% for the first three months after opening this account.⁴
There are a few things you need to know and do before you can open any of the above account options. We’ll go through each process below.
To open this account, you need to be at least 14 years of age and an Australian resident. To open this account online, you will need to⁵:
- Visit the St George site and navigate to this accounts main page
- Click “Open Account”
- Confirm it’s the account you want to open
- Input your personal details into the online form
- Upload your documents
- Request an SMS activation
If you have everything ready for your application, your account can be opened in just minutes.
You can choose a bundle and link one of the savings accounts at the same time as when you open the St George everyday account.² Both accounts can be opened online, over the phone or in a local branch.⁶
If you are a couple, it is possible to open a new joint account online If one of you already has a St George account. If neither are yet to open a St George account, you both will need to visit a branch with your identification and tax details.⁶
Sometimes having a convenient place to manage your funds can come with some extra account fees. Let’s see what type of fees come with the Complete Freedom account and compare this with an alternative account option with Wise.
|St George current account⁶
|Account monthly fees
|Free to hold up to $23,000 AUD per month. 0.00437% daily holding fee for any amount over $23,000 AUD
|International transfer fee (for a sample amount of $1,000 AUD to GBP)
|$0 for transfers in a foreign currency
$20 for transfers in AUD
|Small payout fee + 0.48% variable conversion fee (e.g. for a transfer of $1,000 AUD to GBP, the total fee charged is $5.31 AUD) You can make a fee calculation here.
|Free withdrawals within Australia
Free withdrawals from Global Alliance and Westpac Group ATMs
$5 per overseas withdrawal outside network + a 3% foreign currency conversion fee
|You can take out money for free twice a month — as long as the total amount is under $350 AUD. After that, there is a $1.50 AUD per transaction fixed fee. If you take out over $350 AUD in one month, there is a 1.75% on the amount exceeding that. See card fees here.
|Card maintenance fees
*Reference rate only - actual rate may vary. Information last checked on 17 October 2023
Although we’ve touched on some of the requirements to open an account with St George above, here we will go a little deeper into the documents and other key things to know.
Before you go to open an account, you should have these documents handy⁵:
- Two forms of Identification
- Your Tax File Number or Foreign tax number
You should also have your mobile phone ready to go to open your new account online.
There are no minimum deposits required to open a St George account.⁶
Generally if you are over the age of 14 and have a valid australian residential address, you can open your account online. If you are new to Australia, or younger than 14, you will have to visit a branch to set your new everyday account up.
If you are looking to open just a savings account, new customers can open an Incentive Saver as a stand alone account. For the Maxi Saver account, you will need to have a Complete Freedom account already.²
St George can be contacted by:
- Calling 13 33 30 within Australia
- Calling +61 2 9155 7800 from overseas
You can also find your local branch and talk to a representative in person.
If St George doesn’t have what you are looking for, you can have a look at some alternative providers such as the Big 4 banks including NAB, CommBank, ANZ or Westpac. If you’re looking for an everyday type account with an international twist, you should check out the Wise Account.
If you’re looking for a flexible account that is great for daily spending in Australia and overseas, the Wise Account is worth a look.
The Wise Account can be opened for free and allows you to hold money in over 40 currencies and send money to 160 countries. You can also order local account details for 10 world currencies including AUD.
You can also use the Wise Debit card to spend money in 150+ countries without markups and hidden transaction fees. The mid-market rate is used when switching between currencies, helping to keep costs low when sending money internationally. It’s the rate you see on a Google conversion search.
Join over 16 million customers currently enjoying Wise. It’ll only take a few minutes to register and see what’s inside.
- St George about
- St George accounts
- St George Complete Freedom
- St George Savings
- St George open
- St George fees PDF
Sources checked on: 17 October 2023
This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.
We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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