If you’re considering a move to the Czech Republic, you’ll need to prepare. One of the first things you might need is a bank account.
In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know on how to open a bank account in the Czech Republic. This includes the documents you’ll need, which banks you can choose from and how to get started.
Plus, a quick look at an alternative to traditional banks for managing your money internationally - Wise. Open a Wise account online for free, and for a fee¹, you can even get a debit card for spending in 174 countries at the mid-market exchange rate.
There aren’t any special restrictions for foreigners opening an account in the Czech Republic.
However, some banks may need you to open the account in a branch, rather than completing the process online.
The Czech Republic has a number of international banks and a large expat community, especially in the capital, Prague. For this reason, it’s relatively straightforward to open a bank account there, even if you aren’t a Czech citizen. All you’ll need are the right documents, which we’ll look at next.
If you’re not an EU citizen, you’ll need to provide your passport and residence permit. Additionally, the bank might ask for your proof of address.
To open a bank account in Czechia as an EU citizen, you’ll need to have two of the following official documents:
- Identification card
- Birth certificate
- Driver’s license
- Health insurance card
- Proof of address
- Employee card.
If you’re applying for a student account, you’ll need your visa and your certificate of study.
Lastly, you’ll usually need to make a minimum initial deposit on opening the account. This can range between 200 CZK and 2,000 CZK.
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The Czech Republic has a strong banking network, with a wide range of local retail and international banks to choose from. You’re likely to have the best choice in major metropolitan areas, such as Prague.
Here’s a quick roundup of some of the best banks in Prague, Ostrava, Brno and throughout the Czech Republic.
- Česka Sporitelna
- Komerční Banka
- Fio Banka
- Raiffeisen Bank CZ
- UniCredit CZ
- Komerční Banka
- Citibank Europe
If your home bank in the US has an international presence, it may be possible to transfer your account. You may also prefer the familiarity of your home bank’s products and services. But which US banks operate in the Czech Republic?
You’re most likely to find American banks in Prague in the Czech Republic, or other major cities. An example is Citibank, which have a presence both in the US and the Czech Republic.
If you’re looking for Bank of America in the list of Prague banks, you’ll be disappointed. The bank doesn’t appear to have branches in the Czech Republic.
In many cases, Czech banks will let you open an account online. You may need to provide a little more information than opening an account in person.
However, some banks such as ČSOB require foreign applicants to visit a branch to open their account².
The right bank for you in the Czech Republic all depends on your needs. You might be looking for English-speaking customer services, along with online banking in English.
Remember to compare fees carefully too, as some banks in the Czech Republic charge for debit cards, using out-of-network ATMs and for making international transfers.
If you do need to send or receive money internationally, Wise could be the ideal solution for you. Open your Wise account online for free, and you’ll have a convenient, low-cost¹ way to manage your money between the US, Czech Republic and worldwide.
All sources checked on 18-Jul-2022
This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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