Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Help & tips > Finance/banking/taxation  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 25.08.2007, 10:36
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Opening a current account from the UK

Hi all,
I move to Gstaad in 3 weeks. Is it possible to open a current account for my wages to be paid into before I move out there? I want to use a Swiss bank as my wages will be in francs and appear to incur charges for currency changes if I get them paid into my HSBC account. Any advice much appreciated.

Chris
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 25.08.2007, 11:00
telandy's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Thurgau
Posts: 2,054
Groaned at 5 Times in 4 Posts
Thanked 594 Times in 373 Posts
telandy has an excellent reputationtelandy has an excellent reputationtelandy has an excellent reputationtelandy has an excellent reputation
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Chris,

I would say that it is almost impossible to open a bank account here before you arrive. You need ID, work contract, address in Switzerland, your acceptance from the authorities to live here etc.

It has been hard for people living here to open bank accounts, without all the right pieces of paper.

Your best bet is to contact one of the Swiss banks in the UK and tansfer the account when you are here.

If you have all the pieces of paper, you could try opening an account on line.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank telandy for this useful post:
  #3  
Old 25.08.2007, 11:17
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Cheers. Think there's the Bank of Zurich in Leicester. Will have a wander down on Monday to see if they can point me in the right direction.
Cheers
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 25.08.2007, 11:27
gbn's Avatar
gbn gbn is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Zuri Oberland
Posts: 2,750
Groaned at 109 Times in 74 Posts
Thanked 2,398 Times in 1,124 Posts
gbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

I'd guess the "Bank of Zurich" in Leicester is a private bank - I don't think it is a retail Swiss bank (UBS, CS etc).

Bear in mind that you can open an account on the spot with passport and work contract - you may need to send a copy of your permit later.
I gave the address of my temporary digs (Swiss star in Kloten), and that was that.

I'm sure I'll be contradicted, but it should be as simple as that.

Ditto SWMBO, she got an account with just here permit with no work contract (albeit with a few minor strings attached).
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank gbn for this useful post:
  #5  
Old 25.08.2007, 11:57
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
I'd guess the "Bank of Zurich" in Leicester is a private bank - I don't think it is a retail Swiss bank (UBS, CS etc).

Bear in mind that you can open an account on the spot with passport and work contract - you may need to send a copy of your permit later.
I gave the address of my temporary digs (Swiss star in Kloten), and that was that.

I'm sure I'll be contradicted, but it should be as simple as that.

Ditto SWMBO, she got an account with just here permit with no work contract (albeit with a few minor strings attached).

Sounds promising. I seem to remember a few banks on the high st in Gstaad. if it's possibly that easy then maybe I'll wait until I get out there.

Cheers
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 25.08.2007, 12:35
Blonaybear's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Blonay
Posts: 1,597
Groaned at 4 Times in 4 Posts
Thanked 836 Times in 432 Posts
Blonaybear has a reputation beyond reputeBlonaybear has a reputation beyond reputeBlonaybear has a reputation beyond reputeBlonaybear has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Another possibility you should consider is a Swiss Post Office account. They offer an excellent online service with just about all the facilities you could want, far ahead of anything I have in the UK, and their site is in English.

The PostCard is universally accepted here. You can also make wire payments to foreign bnaks using the IBAN number. I‘ve just done a payment to the UK and it cost CHF 2.- (about 80p) which compares to £35 that my UK bank charges to make a payment in the opposite direction !

Providing you have a certain balance, and this can be spread over your normal account and savings and investments etc., it’s all free.

You can sign up for it at any Post Office when you arrive and the online part takes just a couple of days.

You’ll find a demo version on the website. If you want to know more feel free to PM me.

PS : see you are into bird watching. You should watch out for our member Colonelboris who has the same interest.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Blonaybear for this useful post:
  #7  
Old 25.08.2007, 13:42
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
Another possibility you should consider is a Swiss Post Office account. They offer an excellent online service with just about all the facilities you could want, far ahead of anything I have in the UK, and their site is in English.

The PostCard is universally accepted here. You can also make wire payments to foreign bnaks using the IBAN number. I‘ve just done a payment to the UK and it cost CHF 2.- (about 80p) which compares to £35 that my UK bank charges to make a payment in the opposite direction !

Providing you have a certain balance, and this can be spread over your normal account and savings and investments etc., it’s all free.

You can sign up for it at any Post Office when you arrive and the online part takes just a couple of days.

You’ll find a demo version on the website. If you want to know more feel free to PM me.

PS : see you are into bird watching. You should watch out for our member Colonelboris who has the same interest.

That sounds excellent. Btw, I seem to remember colonelboris from another forum (birds) . Don't know if he remembers me. We'll see.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 25.08.2007, 14:37
telandy's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Thurgau
Posts: 2,054
Groaned at 5 Times in 4 Posts
Thanked 594 Times in 373 Posts
telandy has an excellent reputationtelandy has an excellent reputationtelandy has an excellent reputationtelandy has an excellent reputation
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Post account works well with me, the PLUS System lets you draw out cash abroad, there is a Post Office in every village and you can use the card in thw whole of CH. My UK company transfers money into it no problkem from the UK, if you need to speak to anyone, you can do it in English.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 25.08.2007, 14:57
terryhall's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Die Südkürve
Posts: 1,794
Groaned at 11 Times in 10 Posts
Thanked 1,030 Times in 552 Posts
terryhall has a reputation beyond reputeterryhall has a reputation beyond reputeterryhall has a reputation beyond reputeterryhall has a reputation beyond reputeterryhall has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

I opened an account with the KantonalBank in about 20 minutes, all I needed was my passport - no proof of employment, no permit, no proof of Swiss address, nothing.

In my experience with HSBC, be prepared for the following if you keep your UK account over here:

1) Every time you use your card, they take the funds a day after they make the authorisation for the transaction - because of changes in the exchange rate, the two figures never match up, and so this means that as far as your "cleared funds" are concerned, you have spent twice as much as you actually have. They won't do anything about this, you just have to wait for 5 working days for the pending authorisations to "drop off the system"

2) Every time you call to speak to them with a question, they ask whether you let your issuing branch know that you were going on holiday. They have no answer when you tell them you moved here, and that you need things sorted out.

3) They try and resolve every problem as if you were still in the UK - I've lost count of how many times I've been told - "Go into your local branch", or "We'll send a new card to your branch", or similar. I then ask them politely where their nearest branch is to Zug, as I've yet to see any HSBC branch in Switzerland (except the posh one on Paradeplatz which I suspect I won't be allowed to use)

It all got too much when I finally got my bank account sorted over here, and called them to ask for their IBAN number to make a bank transfer every month to cover my direct debits for various UK expenses - the bloke on the phone gave me my unique e-banking login number. I explained to him his mistake, and he told me "No sir...that's what an IBAN number is"

At that point, I decided to have no more dealings with HSBC. Incredible.
__________________
Zürich Inneoin GAA Club
www.snopes.com - an essential resource for the everday gullible internet reader.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank terryhall for this useful post:
  #10  
Old 25.08.2007, 16:01
gbn's Avatar
gbn gbn is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Zuri Oberland
Posts: 2,750
Groaned at 109 Times in 74 Posts
Thanked 2,398 Times in 1,124 Posts
gbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond reputegbn has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

...following on from terryhall... open an account with Nationwide Building Society.

No loading or commission on foreign currency use of your cards, IBAN number OK, accepting of foreign addresses.

We've had new cards and whatnot all sent here.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank gbn for this useful post:
  #11  
Old 26.08.2007, 01:21
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
I opened an account with the KantonalBank in about 20 minutes, all I needed was my passport - no proof of employment, no permit, no proof of Swiss address, nothing.

In my experience with HSBC, be prepared for the following if you keep your UK account over here:

1) Every time you use your card, they take the funds a day after they make the authorisation for the transaction - because of changes in the exchange rate, the two figures never match up, and so this means that as far as your "cleared funds" are concerned, you have spent twice as much as you actually have. They won't do anything about this, you just have to wait for 5 working days for the pending authorisations to "drop off the system"

2) Every time you call to speak to them with a question, they ask whether you let your issuing branch know that you were going on holiday. They have no answer when you tell them you moved here, and that you need things sorted out.

3) They try and resolve every problem as if you were still in the UK - I've lost count of how many times I've been told - "Go into your local branch", or "We'll send a new card to your branch", or similar. I then ask them politely where their nearest branch is to Zug, as I've yet to see any HSBC branch in Switzerland (except the posh one on Paradeplatz which I suspect I won't be allowed to use)

It all got too much when I finally got my bank account sorted over here, and called them to ask for their IBAN number to make a bank transfer every month to cover my direct debits for various UK expenses - the bloke on the phone gave me my unique e-banking login number. I explained to him his mistake, and he told me "No sir...that's what an IBAN number is"

At that point, I decided to have no more dealings with HSBC. Incredible.

Cheers. That sounds ominous. It's just going to be handy if I can keep a UK bank account open.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 26.08.2007, 01:23
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
...following on from terryhall... open an account with Nationwide Building Society.

No loading or commission on foreign currency use of your cards, IBAN number OK, accepting of foreign addresses.

We've had new cards and whatnot all sent here.

A friend said this last night as his son had gone to Canada and they'd been very good. Thanks for the advice everyone. My head is full but it's good to be able to make an informed decision.

Cheers
Chris
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 27.08.2007, 10:06
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
Another possibility you should consider is a Swiss Post Office account. They offer an excellent online service with just about all the facilities you could want, far ahead of anything I have in the UK, and their site is in English.

The PostCard is universally accepted here. You can also make wire payments to foreign bnaks using the IBAN number. I‘ve just done a payment to the UK and it cost CHF 2.- (about 80p) which compares to £35 that my UK bank charges to make a payment in the opposite direction !

Providing you have a certain balance, and this can be spread over your normal account and savings and investments etc., it’s all free.

You can sign up for it at any Post Office when you arrive and the online part takes just a couple of days.

You’ll find a demo version on the website. If you want to know more feel free to PM me.

PS : see you are into bird watching. You should watch out for our member Colonelboris who has the same interest.
I've clicked on the link and read throught the different types of accounts. Does anyone know what a 'set' account is. I just want the equivilant to a normal UK current account and cant work out which one it is.

Cheers
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 27.08.2007, 10:17
ommthree's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Zürich
Posts: 275
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 108 Times in 67 Posts
ommthree has made some interesting contributions
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Hi Chris,

I use the post account too and find it pretty good. Online banking in English with easy transfer to your UK account if reqd. I also can recommend Nationwide as a good account to have in the UK while you're abroad. You can get money for free from cash points here and online banking allows you transfer money in and out of high interest esavings accounts and bonds. BUT, you can't open the account from abroad, have to do it while you still have a UK address.

By the way, how's Leicester these days? I lived there for many years. Curry still good?

Owen.

Edit: By thee way I think the 'set' is just the standard account. I think it's 2CHF a month or so, or free if you've got more than about 7000CHF in it. Why anyone would keep 7000CHF in their current account remains however, something of a mystery.

Last edited by ommthree; 27.08.2007 at 10:20. Reason: More info
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank ommthree for this useful post:
  #15  
Old 27.08.2007, 10:21
Blonaybear's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Blonay
Posts: 1,597
Groaned at 4 Times in 4 Posts
Thanked 836 Times in 432 Posts
Blonaybear has a reputation beyond reputeBlonaybear has a reputation beyond reputeBlonaybear has a reputation beyond reputeBlonaybear has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
I've clicked on the link and read throught the different types of accounts. Does anyone know what a 'set' account is. I just want the equivilant to a normal UK current account and cant work out which one it is.

Cheers
Have a look at this and click on 'overview of individual services and sets. The Online set should give you everything you need.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 27.08.2007, 10:24
cbb's Avatar
cbb cbb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK (ex CH)
Posts: 421
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 81 Times in 43 Posts
cbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of manycbb has earned the respect of many
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
Have a look at this and click on 'overview of individual services and sets. The Online set should give you everything you need.

Thanks again. Much appreciated.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 27.08.2007, 11:25
Nathu's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Zürich
Posts: 4,674
Groaned at 18 Times in 16 Posts
Thanked 2,208 Times in 1,248 Posts
Nathu has a reputation beyond reputeNathu has a reputation beyond reputeNathu has a reputation beyond reputeNathu has a reputation beyond reputeNathu has a reputation beyond reputeNathu has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Opening a current account from the UK

Quote:
View Post
I've clicked on the link and read throught the different types of accounts. Does anyone know what a 'set' account is. I just want the equivilant to a normal UK current account and cant work out which one it is.

Cheers
You might have to dig deeper in the Postfinance website but here is basically how it works:
  • Private "Set": not really a set but the basic account. They toss in a deposit account (higher interest but limited retractions per year) but you don't have to use it
  • Online Set: e-banking for your Private Set, once activated you can use e-banking either with a Windows/OS X standalone program or with a web browser. Saves you a few francs/year if you don't have 7500 Fr. on average on the account. Instead of dead tree account statements you get PDF files. You can switch a Private Set to an Online Set any time.
  • (Also there's a Student Set (no postgrads as far as I know) to get rid of monthly fees altogether and with an interest rate that actually outdos inflation )
Details see here.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Nathu for this useful post:
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Opening a Swiss Bank Account hd_geezer Finance/banking/taxation 58 11.08.2008 23:42
Calendar view only current month Diem Forum support 5 28.09.2006 18:05
Opening a U.S. bank account from Switzerland? gurutalon Other/general 9 17.09.2006 13:14


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 04:21.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0