Spanish Bank Account For Non Residents

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29 Apr 2017 7:59 PM by Danyboy Star rating in London. 8 posts Send private message


Can someone tell me which Bank account to open in Spain for non-resident?

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29 Apr 2017 10:15 PM by mariedav Star rating in Ciudad Quesada. 1218 posts Send private message

Any bank will open a non-resident account for you. Be aware that these accounts will attract charges: quarterly maintenance fees, debit/credit card fees, non-resident certificate every 2 years and so on. You should really check with the bank but I would, IMHO, avoid Bankinter as their fees for a non-resident account seem more than the others. 

Caja Rural has been recommended before with low fees. Others like Santander but remember that Santander UK and Santander Spain operate as separate entities although they do have some benefits.

As said, best check with the bank.


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30 Apr 2017 7:22 AM by mib150 Star rating in Corvera / Yorkshire. 125 posts Send private message

I have a Sabadell, Key Account Plus which works well for me.


This message was last edited by mib150 on 30/04/2017.

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30 Apr 2017 12:02 PM by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5241 posts Send private message

The manager of any branch can negotiate rates so shop-around and DO NOT THINK YOU KNOW WHAT WILL HAPPEN IN ANY CIRCUMSTANCE.   It is not like banking in UK or elsewhere.  Ask what will be charged etc. in all the circumstances which may affect you.

 I knew that but Sabadell still charged me just over £800 to transfer a sterling account I had with them.  The fee  was 0.5% on the whole deposit, with no maximum charge.


PS You will need an NIE to run a Non Resident’s account with any Spanish bank.

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30 Apr 2017 12:05 PM by Danyboy Star rating in London. 8 posts Send private message

30 Apr 2017 10:39 PM by tteedd Star rating in Hertfordshire & Punt.... 987 posts Send private message

My advice is to only open one if you have to.

The main reason you may have to is if you are buying or have a property in spain.

If you do not have a property, use your British bank and cards.

All Spanish banks tend to have large charges.

I have banked with:

La Ciaxa:     Initially reasonable but charges increased and eventually they refused to re-imburse me for their mistake.

Banco Halifax Espania:   Very good but sold out to Lloyds

Lloyds Espania:   Reasonable but sold out to Sabadel.

Sabadel   Charges high especially when buying or selling property. I was on the point of leaving them (to Bankia whom I deemed best at the time) when they (Sabadel) showed me their 'Pensioner's account'. Low/nil charges, but you must pay in a genuine pension. I pay in my UK old age pension.

Several of the banks charge less if you pay in a large sum each month, invest with them or buy their shares. Needs research just before you need to open the account as terms change. Look particularly at the smaller and regional banks but be careful to ensure that their cards operate charge free from some of the banking machines in your area.


This message was last edited by tteedd on 30/04/2017.

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01 May 2017 7:59 AM by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5241 posts Send private message

Tteedd ,   good point about cards.

I cancelled card with a Spanish bank becaus ealthough I get free banking, as I have my UK state pension paid into that account, I could not get a free card service.  Instead I use my Nationwide Visa.   I always choose to pay in euros so that the exchange is done by Nationwide.   The rate I get is always just a tiny percentage less than the interbank rate and there are no charges at all.  I do not use it to draw as there is a charge for that,

When I need cash, I draw it over the counter.

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01 May 2017 10:33 AM by Roberto Star rating in Torremolinos. 4552 posts Send private message

Roberto´s avatar

The Sabadell "pensioner's" account (called Experiencia) charges no fees or commissions as long as you have a pension paid in regularly. If it's a UK state pension, paid by Worldlink, the exchange rate is usually quite good. The account allows free deposits of (Spanish) cheques, and free transfers within the EU - particularly useful for anyone selling a property and transfering the proceeds back to the UK (for now!)

Also useful is their prepaid debit card, which you can top up online from your account. I prefer to use this when paying for anything online - the vendor can only take what's on the card, nothing more!



"Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please"

Mark Twain




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01 May 2017 1:27 PM by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5241 posts Send private message

Good advice Roberto. 

I believe all banks will be fee free if one has their pension paid into the account but that does mean credit cards are without a maintenance fee.

SEPA transfers within the euro are also all free for everyone.

The DWP (World Link Services) sends bank transfers though Citi Bank in UK who make the exchange to euros,  always at the best possible rate for that time of that day, and then transfer via their bank in Spain to pensioners account.

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01 May 2017 7:18 PM by marcbernard Star rating in Marina Alta; Alicant.... 254 posts Send private message


Possible typo. Should there be a "not" between "does" and "mean" in line 2, paragraph 2?

Certain banks do charge for both Credit and Debit cards.

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02 May 2017 7:06 AM by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5241 posts Send private message

Marc.Good to 'see' you again. 

Yes it should have read  .........  I believe all banks will be fee free if one has their pension paid into the account but that does NOT mean credit cards are without a maintenance fee.,,,,,,,,, 

I cancelled my card and now use my Nationwide card which is totally free

My son who had an account at the same bank as me, Cajamar, closed his account as he was being charged 60 euros p.a. account maintenance.  I added him to my account and we transferred his direct debits to my account, which as I said is free.   

My wife has an account and to avoid charges we bought some shares in the bank.  Now she gets free banking and dividends on the shares.


This message was last edited by johnzx on 02/05/2017.

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