Living in Thailand | cost of living | visa thailand

Bank Account In Thailand

The times when you got a 16 to 18% interest rate on a three month time deposit are over since the Asian Crisis in 1997. But still, having a bank account in Thailand is the safest way to keep your money.

The banking system has greatly improved over the last years, you will always get a ATM Card for your account, some of the bigger banks even offer international credit (debit) cards instead ATM Cards to their customers. (Bangkok Bank, Siam Commercial...) In the towns and the tourist centers you will find those ATM machines on every corner and they usually speak Thai & English.

Opening an Bank Account in Thailand is not always as easy as it looks like. Bank clerks will usually first ask your passport and a workpermit to let you open an account.

If you don`t have a workpermit, you will need at least another ID such as your driver´s licence to do it or a one year Non Immigrant Visa. If it doesn`t work in the first bank, try another one and maybe another one.

I recently managed to open an account with Bangkok Bank in Krabi, providing my passport with a tourist visa, a residence certificate from the immigration office and my german driver´s licence as a second ID. The branch of the Bangkok Bank was the third bank I tried.

A residence certificate you can get at the local immigration office for free, when your landlord has registered you at your rented houses address with the Immigration. (He has to do that within 24 hours after you moved in his house or flat).

Foreigners can also open a time deposit account in foreign currencies such as US Dollar, Pound Sterling, Australian Dollar, Swiss Franc, Hong Kong Dollar, Euro and Singapore Dollar. There are however some restrictions on that, please aks your bank in Thailand for details.

Please be aware that there is no need to open a bank account in Thailand in the name of your thai girl friend or another thai friend, just because it might be easier. A lot of foreigners lost all their money that way.