How To Open A Bank Account In Australia?

how to open a bank account in Australia

Opening a bank account in Australia is not really a difficult task but international students who would be moving to this country might wonder How to open a bank account in Australia? Here’s everything you need to know regarding the procedure and finding the right bank for you.

  • Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ)
  • Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA)
  • National Australia Bank (NAB)
  • Westpac Banking Corporation.

These are the four major banks in Australia. Except this, there are also several regional banks for you to choose from, which could be the best option in your specific region.

Types of accounts

There are a few distinct types of bank accounts in Australia, but all of them don’t do the same thing. Here are some of the most common account types in the Australian Banks :

Transaction accounts

A transaction account is the most prevalent type of account, which can be used for your day-to-day expenses. You can securely deposit and access your money, pay your bills, and use your debit card to shop or to withdraw money from ATMs.

Student accounts

Most banks provide student-specific accounts, that gives you all the facilities just like transaction accounts but with the added perk of usually being fee-free for everyday operations. If you open a student account, you might get to skip the monthly or annual account fees, deposit cash for free or withdraw from an ATM without bothering about being charged. 

If you’re an international student, you’ll also find lots of special student accounts by banks like Commonwealth Bank, National Australia Bank, and Westpac. Some banks will provide you with a banker who speaks your language and several such benefits.

Savings accounts

Once you’ve opened up an account to control your everyday expenses, it’s a good idea to open a savings account if you’ll have access to larger sums of money. Saving a bit of your money every week is a really good habit to get into, and having a separate savings account means you won’t accidentally spend that money on your next shopping trip. 

These accounts also come with a higher interest rate than transaction accounts, so you’ll earn more money on what you put into the account than you would normally.  

How to open a bank account in Australia?

Opening your bank account before you leave your home country:

This is how it usually works if you want to open a bank account in Australia from your home country. Always make sure you check every detail properly before making any deposits

  • The easiest way to open your bank account is through their website and using an online application form.
  • Make sure you have ID proof ready which is a mandatory document. 
  • Make sure you incorporate all your names i.e. middle name and last name, exactly how it appears in your passport.
  • You will be informed and given the details of your new account once your application has been processed and approved. After your bank account has been confirmed, you will be able to transfer money.
  • Once you arrive in Australia, visit your bank and show them your passport so that you can access your money. You will also receive your debit card to withdraw money. Allowance to register for telephone and internet banking will also be provided.

Opening your bank account after you arrive in Australia:

Many international students choose to open a bank account once they are in Australia. If you would like to go for this option, make sure you open an account as soon as:

  1. You decide a place to live as you will need an address.
  2. your student ID card has been issued.
  3. Banks will open a student account that does not impose account keeping fees if you get along these two documents.

You need to visit your preferred bank to present your details and proof of identity documents. Many banks offer international students a special student account that does not charge monthly account fees.

Things to keep in mind


Banks in Australia can charge non-customers a fee for using their ATMs. While choosing a bank, make sure they have numerous ATMs accessible right across your campus and near your accommodation, so you don’t need to go too far to withdraw money. You can also pick a bank that offers a wide network of free ATMs. Bankwest has Australia’s largest bank ATM network with over 3,500 Bankwest and Commbank ATMs. 

Service fees

Many banks charge monthly service fees for managing your account. This can add up in the long run, so make sure you choose an account that doesn’t charge a lot or waives the fees completely. If you’re an international student, you can prefer an account like Citibank Plus which will let you withdraw money from all Citibank ATMs for free and offer fee-free international money transfers. 

Debit cards

While opening an account, you will receive a card you can use while shopping or to withdraw money from ATMs. Mastercard Debit and Visa Debit can be used in Australia and overseas and to buy products online.

You must choose an account that will let you use your card at no extra cost, so make sure you look around for the best option that won’t incur any additional charges.

Opening an account

With most banks in Australia, you can already set up a student account online for up to three months before you arrive in the country. Fill out the application form on your chosen bank’s website, which usually needs information like your passport number and expiry date, and you can deposit money into your account once you’ve received your new details.

After your arrival, you just need to book an appointment at your local branch to prove your identity so you can access your money. Bring along your passport as well as proof of address in Australia, such as a utility bill or a tenancy agreement. You’ll usually need to do this within the first few months, so make sure you don’t forget after all the excitement of moving to the new country.

You can also choose to open a bank account in person but make sure you do it within the first six weeks of arrival. Make an appointment with your local branch as soon as you arrive in Australia, and take along your passport, university acceptance letter, and proof of a permanent address so that a consultant can open your account for you. Your debit card will probably arrive in the mail within a few weeks.

Best bank accounts for students

Some of these banks don’t charge fees, have extensive ATM networks, and also offer a few useful discounts. Here is a rundown of great bank accounts for international students below


With Bankwest’s Student Account, you don’t need to pay monthly account maintenance fees and will benefit from discounts on Apple Store for Education, McDonald’s, and Ally Fashion among others. You’ll also have access to a large number of ATMs, as well as countless domestic electronic withdrawals.


Westpac dismisses most standard fees for their student customers. The bank is also part of a global ATM alliance, which signifies you can use 50,000 ATMs across the world for free. Another great perk you’ll receive with this account is the cardless cash scheme, which will let you withdraw money without using your card with the Westpac Mobile Banking app.


This account doesn’t charge any monthly account fees, and you can use the bank’s ATM network for free. There will also be no such overdrawn fees if you happen to overdraw your account balance.

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how to open a bank account in Australia

How To Open A Bank Account In Australia?

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