As a non-Italian citizen, you are entitled to open a non-resident bank account known as ‘conto corrente non residenti’. These are the main points to consider.
As a non-Italian resident, you are entitled to open a non-resident bank account regardless of your citizenship or visa status.
Usually, one initial in person visit at the bank is required. However, a few Italian banks now offer remote personal identification.
Requirements to open a bank account
Requirements to open an Italian bank account are:
- Valid ID (e.g., Passport)
- Italian tax code (codice fiscale)*
- Anti Money Laundering (AML) compliance.
* check requirements and process to apply for and obtain an Italian tax code.
Process for opening an Italian bank account
One thing that should be borne in mind is that for the bank, a non-resident account involves time consuming formalities and compliance requirements. Therefore, many banks will not open a non-resident bank account unless it is for something that is beneficial to them, i.e. in line with a mortgage.
Having said that, several banks regularly operate with foreigners and some even have specific packages designed for non-residents. It is always advisable to contact banks beforehand to see if they offer the service.
In person, in Italy:
The easiest way to open an Italian bank account is to go there in person with your passport and Italian tax code (codice fiscale).
The bank representative will check your identity and go through your personal profile information to comply with the Italian regulations regarding Anti Money Laundering (AML). You will have to sign a few documents which often are offered only in Italian.
The bank account is generally functioning immediately or within a few hours of you completing the paperwork.
Remotely/from another country
Some Italian banks have branches in other countries or have strong business relationship with banks in other countries so that they are able to perform AML compliance formalities abroad. You will need to find such a bank in order to use this option.
Other banks can perform AML checks remotely. For example, they ask for the first deposit to be done via money transfer from a bank account in your name and then they arrange a video interview through the internet.
Non-residents Italian bank account terms and conditions
Terms and conditions vary from bank to bank. As mentioned earlier, some banks have specific non-resident packages available.
Always consult with the bank before you visit, to save time and frustration.
Generally, Italian banks offer a full range of services equivalent to those offered to Italian residents and/or European Union citizens. These typically include, online banking, cheque books (check books), automatic utility bill payment, debit card and credit card.