The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is one of the countries with a maximum number of expat population. Every year thousands of people come to the UAE concerning their professional or personal lives. Once the purpose of the visit is fulfilled they tend to move to another country or their home country itself. When moved to a new place one of the important activities is to get a bank account. Getting a regular bank account in UAE is a simple process when the applicant holds the required documents and meets the eligibility criteria for the account.
While moving out of the UAE most of them tend to close their bank account if there is no purpose of visiting the Emirates again in the near future. But there can be several residents who have ongoing business or financial activities happening in the UAE and require a bank account in the UAE to keep the financial activities active. For such account holders, banks in UAE are offering non-resident bank accounts where the account holders can continue with the account activities though they are not residents anymore.
Can convert an existing account to a non-resident account?
Bank account holders need to inform the bank if they are leaving UAE and clear the due payments (if any). If they wish to maintain the account, they can request the bank for the procedure.
Once a resident leaves UAE, they are considered as non-resident so non-residents are eligible for a non-resident account in UAE.
Usually, banks convert the existing resident account to a non-resident account. This varies from bank to bank. If the bank does not provide a non-resident account, the account holder can cancel the account and open an account at a bank that offers a non-resident account.
If a resident leaves the UAE without closing the account, the account can be frozen in the case of no activities performed in the account. Even if there are transactions happening in the account, banking officials may not accept and freeze the account as the account holder is no longer a resident of the UAE. Though this may vary from bank to bank, it is always recommended to inform the bank officials regarding the resident status and proceed accordingly.
The features of the normal resident bank account and the non-resident bank account are mostly the same. The only major difference is non-residents are not provided a chequebook. They are provided with an international debit card for the account.
Also, read: Why expats must have financial discipline
The documents required for a non-resident bank account are,
- Passport copy
- Latest Utility bills for address proofs
- Income proofs
- Bank reference letter from anywhere
- Bank statements of 3-6 months
If you are an existing customer of the bank then the documents may vary. And also banks may request additional documents apart from the mentioned.
Minimum balance requirement in the account
One of the important factors in a bank account is the minimum balance in the account. Bank account holders need to maintain a minimum average balance in the account according to the currency chosen. And non-resident accounts are no exemption in this. There are certain bank accounts that offer zero balance accounts for non-residents.
Best non-resident bank accounts in UAE
Most of the well-known banks in the UAE provide non-resident bank accounts. Some of those are,
- Noor bank
- Emirates NBD
- First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB)
With the increase in technology, banking has become very easy. Banking customers can avail services from anywhere in the world. This has made banking comfortable for residents leaving UAE and continuing their financial activities.