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Opening a Bank Account in Switzerland

Are you looking to open a bank account in Switzerland? Business Setup Worldwide can assist you with it.

A prosperous and economically advanced nation, Switzerland has among the world’s highest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita. It is also known for its impressive banking system, including its legendary privacy policies. It is said that a banker in Switzerland should not reveal private information about bank clients as it is a criminal offense. There are hundreds of banks in Switzerland, ranging from large multinational banks to the smaller banks serving selective clients. Considered the world’s largest offshore financial centre, the Swiss banking sector was historically known for its privacy, stability and protection of customer information and assets, although recent law changes are changing the Swiss banking scene. The Federal Banking Commission (FBC) regulates these banks.

There is a perception that having a Swiss account comes with a certain prestige. But the process to open a Swiss bank account is easier than you think. There are a few steps that must be followed while opening a bank account in Switzerland and one must also be aware of the do’s and don’ts while following the process.

How to Open a Bank Account in Switzerland?

It is relatively easy to open a Swiss bank account as an expat. In fact, Swiss banks take pride in the ease with which a new customer can open a bank account. Because of the quality of services offered and the many different competing providers, you are advised to compare prices and services before committing to sign with a bank. The steps to open a Swiss bank account are as follows:

1. Eligibility

According to the Swiss law, non-residents who want to open a Swiss bank account must be at least 18 years old. Other than that, there aren’t a lot of restrictions. Your account can be in almost any currency, although most choose the Swiss franc, U.S. dollar, Euro or Sterling, and there is often no minimum balance required to open an account.

2. Look for the Bank that Meets Your Needs

One of the biggest factors in determining which bank to choose is what you're looking for in a bank. Comparing policies and investment opportunities at a variety of top-rated banks can help you examine the pros and cons of each bank and find one that's right for you.

3. Choose an Account Type

There are different types of account through which one can start their transaction. Certain banks also require you to pay a minimum amount for the initial deposit, a minimum account balance, and other qualifying factors. Compare the requirements of each type of account you're interested in opening to find one that will work best for your financial needs.

4. Visit the Bank and Meet the Representative

If you have chosen the bank and the type of account you are interested to make transactions through, the next ideal step is to meet the representative of that bank and tell them your requirements. They will tell you all the benefits and do’s and don’ts and also inform you about the documents that must be submitted. Follow the same accordingly.

5. Gather All the Documents and Submit Them at the Bank

Like many other banks, you have to submit the specified documents to the bank representative. They will go through each and every document. Parallel to the same fill the application form to open a bank account.

6. Request a Carte Maestro

A Carte Maestro is essentially a debit card that is issued by your bank. It can be used to withdraw cash or complete purchases in most shops, though merchants in smaller towns and villages may have cash-only policies. You can also request for a credit card if you attain the eligibility criteria.

If for any reason you need to close your account or collect on your investment(s), most Swiss banks allow you to do so without any restrictions or fees. This gives many customers confidence, knowing that investments are available in case of an emergency.

Documents Required for Swiss Bank Account Opening

  • Proof of your identity (passport)
  • Residency status (visa)
  • Copy of electricity or phone bill as a proof of address

If you are not yet resident in Switzerland you may be asked to provide proof of income, pay a substantial deposit into your account or get a letter from your employer to demonstrate your solvency.

Why Us?

It can seem overwhelming to go through this process alone without any prior knowledge and you might want to get a help from an advisor. This is when we come into the picture. We at Business Setup Worldwide are here to help you open your Switzerland bank account. Our Swiss advisors are well-versed with the steps and can make this process hassle-free. Contact us today!