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Bank Account in Poland without residency or banks in the UK who will allow to have a PLN account

mcrpolak 6 | 36
22 Jun 2015 #1
Hi all,

I am hoping for some help. I will move to Poland in October/November this year. I have saved up a reasonable amount of cash to buy a flat with my girlfriend in my chosen city. After much procrastination about where to live and thoughts about a number of cities we have settled on Wroclaw as in my profession there are simply more job opportunities and some good Polish Language courses.

However I need some help. The GBP:PLN rate is very good at the moment (at 5.88 on Friday) so I bought around £50,000 whilst the rate was good and got 5.81 for each £ so 290k (PLN). The way I bought it was using a forward contract, So I committed to buying the Zlotys today and made a deposit payment, then I receive the Zlotys on September 30th. I am happy with the financial elements of this transaction but now the practicalities.

I have no PLN bank account currently and need to open one. I am going to receive 300k PLN on 30th September and my plan is for it to sit there until I complete my flat purchase at which point it will leave the account (probably by start of November 15). I then plan to open a bank account in Poland and transfer the rest of my savings into that account

Therefore I need a PLN account, the options I have from the are:

1) HSBC expat offer a PLN account however you have to maintain a balance of £60k GBP at all times. I do not plan to do this as my money will only be with them for a short period of time (say 1-2 months)

2) I am aware that Barclays operate PLN accounts from the UK and I have an appointment in a couple of weeks to apply for this.

3) Do any of you know of any other banks in the UK who will allow you to have a PLN account?
4) How easy will it be for me to open a bank account in Poland? Are there any banks in Poland where I can open an account without actually residing in the country?

5) Transfer the money into my girlfriends account in Poland. However we understand that will lead to a gift tax liability.

I've tried to be as specific as possible and would appreciate it if anyone can help me with advice or suggestions on any of the above.

I don't need any advice on moving to Poland itself (jobs, economy, way of life etc). Just simply on the best way to deal with the above transaction.

If any of you can suggest UK banks in which I can hold PLN or Polish Banks who will let me open an account without being resident It would be much appreciated.
JollyRomek 7 | 461
22 Jun 2015 #2
I take it you are EU citizen? If so, all you need to open a bank account in Poland is your passport. No need to proof your residency status.
James mallone
23 Jun 2015 #3
I'm afraid you're screwed..

The banks in Poland are crap - you'll not get an account unless you've got at the very least a Ppolish address for mail to be sent to.

In similar circumstances to your self I tried to open an account with the likes of idea or was it ideal...with Mbank with Skok with all of them - with no postal address in Poland you're screwed.

Whilst it's true...that u dont need a pesel number a polish id card or even a karty stały pobytu - just a passport address account

I did try opening a post office box a few months ago with the polish post-office and give this address in applications...

Unfortunately the postoffice need an existing polish address to open one of these.

Strange country indeed
23 Jun 2015 #4
Its not strange at all. Worldwide Anti Money Laundering requirements require proof of identity and address.

Do you really think that its a good idea to allow anybody to open a bank account anywhere and shove money into it?
InPolska 9 | 1,805
23 Jun 2015 #5
I currently have accounts in 4 different banks in Poland and every time when opening account, I had to provide full proof of my ID (including PESEL, residence card, passport, address in Poland) and it is normal. I would find it fishy if a bank could open an account for me without requesting any basic information about me.
JollyRomek 7 | 461
23 Jun 2015 #6
Over the time that I have been here I have opened three accounts at three different banks (Nordea, GetIn and Millenium). None of which required a PESEL to do so. The only time they required me to provide my PESEL was when I applied for a credit card.

For account opening the only thing they wanted was my passport and a correspondence address in Poland. Providing an address in Poland should not be a problem, even without having registered a permanent or prolonged stay.

Don't make it more complicated than it actually is.
23 Jun 2015 #7
No. PESEL is not required, a passport is fine.
James mallone - | 9
23 Jun 2015 #8
It is strange.
in providing your passport you are providing perfectly acceptable identification
can't see what having a local address has got to do with it.
with my uk passport , should something go wrong I'm instantly ideeed

You'll note that these days the new polish dowod osobisty doesn't contain an address ....why ?because the bearer is still perfectly Id able without one.

Like I said ...very strange
Polsyr 6 | 758
23 Jun 2015 #9
I had to provide full proof of my ID

That matches what I know. No PESEL and no local address = no account. I can comfortably say that was the case with Raiffeisen, PKO, Alior and ING. I can't say about other banks.
jon357 74 | 22,426
23 Jun 2015 #10
can't see what having a local address has got to do with it.

Money laundering regulations. In the UK you need to show household bills, tax letters etc, in Poland I never had to provide proof of address to open a bank account, however regulations do change - usually getting tighter. I did have to produce proof of income there - documents showing I was on the board of a company etc. Banking laws about residence do vary from country to country.
InPolska 9 | 1,805
23 Jun 2015 #11
I have had my accounts for years and I know things change over the years. The last time I opened an account was in January 2015 at Alior. I don't remember if they asked for my PESEL but I had to provide my residence card, my passport (and they made copies of both).
Steveramsfan 2 | 306
26 Jun 2015 #12
I opened an account in mBank in 2008 while not living in Poland and I needed my passport and a Polish Address.

I used my girlfriends address.
They sent a letter to say the account was opened and I then I went back into the bank and changed my address to a UK address.

All further correspondence was through my UK address.
terri 1 | 1,663
26 Jun 2015 #13
I have an account with Alior which I opened with a British passport and the Polish address of my holiday flat, but stated that the correspondence address is in the UK (where I reside) and where I receive all my income tax statements from the bank.
OP mcrpolak 6 | 36
6 Jul 2015 #14
Thanks all for the advice you gave. I did some research off the back of it and it would appear without residential address in PL you are limiting choice of banks.

I wanted to give you all an update. I went to Barclays Bank in the UK and opened a premier account. With this account is a currency option and I am pleased to say they do offer a PLN account. The application process was simple.I went in branch with normal ID. Opened the UK sterling account and then applied at the same time for a PLN account which I have now been approved for.

There were a few important conditions which were:

1) The sterling account has to be active to remain in operation. Although this can be a simple transfer in and out each month
2) You must deposit at least the equivalent of £2k into the currency account and keep this balance at all times. If you do not there is a £7 per month charge

3) The PLN account is a currency account only. You can make payments using the online tool with no cross border transaction fee. However you do not get a debit card and therefore it can only be used for payments in and out.

It's perfect for me as it's a place to put my Zlotys (although the deal I got on them doesn't look so good now (thanks Greece and Europe))

Hopefully this will be useful to any other Brit who is in this position.

Next challenge to buy a flat :)
31 Oct 2016 #15
Merged: getting by with only a zaświadczenie o zarejestrowaniu pobytu obywateli Unii europejskiej

I've tried to get a mobike phone contract with play and a bank account with wbk ....

both have asked for either a permanent or tymczasowo carte pobyt.

I spoke with an immigration adviser in lodz and was told eu citizens.. don't get a cart tymczasowe only the white folded bit of card ( which says you've registered as an eu citizen)

one bank has accepted the document. .... no one else will - all insist on the temporary residence card which according to an immigration specialist I know isn't available for eu citzenz....the permanent residence card is available - but that's another story.

I have zameldowania ( temp fpr 3 years from last month )and even a pesel number.... but no card tymczasowo

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