Are you a foreign student planning to study in Italy? If so, you need to open a bank account. This is essential for receiving money, paying your tuition, rent, and other expenses. But with so many banks to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you? In this article, we will discuss the best banks in Italy for foreign students.
Benefits of Bank Account in Italy for Students
Opening a bank account in Italy as an international student offers several advantages. Many banks provide student accounts with low or no fees, helping you save money on monthly charges, ATM withdrawals, and international transactions. Some student accounts also come with free features that are not typically available on other accounts, such as free international transfers or discounts on travel insurance.
Additionally, the requirements for opening a student bank account are usually less stringent, making it easy to open an account even if you are a new resident of Italy. Many banks also offer online and mobile banking capabilities, allowing you to conveniently manage your money from anywhere, 24/7. Moreover, some banks provide dedicated customer support for students, ensuring you can get assistance with your account even if you are not physically in Italy.
Can a Student Open a Bank Account in Italy?
International students in Italy have the opportunity to open a bank account, provided they meet certain requirements. Requirements for opening a bank account in Italy for students include the following:
- Have a valid passport or identification document.
- Have an Italian Residence Permit (Permesso di Soggiorno) if you are a non-EU student and intend to study in Italy for more than 90 days. This is different from your student visa.
- Obtain an Italian tax code (codice fiscale).
- Provide proof of address in Italy, which can include a rental contract, utility bill, or university registration.
- Present proof of enrollment in an Italian educational institution, such as a student ID card or a letter from the university.
- Some banks may request documentation to verify your source of income or funds, such as scholarship letters, bank statements, or parental support documentation.
Opening Online Bank Account as an International Student in Italy
Opening a bank account in Italy as a student typically involves visiting a bank branch and completing the account opening process, which usually takes about an hour if you have all the required documents. However, it’s worth noting that with some European virtual banks and fintechs, it is possible to open an Italian bank account online even before you arrive in Italy. They offer features such as multicurrency accounts, SEPA, IBAN, and zero monthly fees. Here are some popular EU online bank options available in Italy, suitable for international students.
Revolut is another online banking giant offering convenient options for students in Italy. With their account, you get an Italian IBAN and a prepaid debit card for online payments and cash withdrawals globally. If you are into crypto trading, Revolut crypto banking feature allows you to buy and sell cryptocurrency.
Highlights for students:
- Free basic account: Includes essential features like payments, transfers, and budgeting tools.
- Optional premium features: Travel insurance, cryptocurrency trading, and more.
- Open banking capabilities: Connect your Revolut app to your existing Italian bank accounts.
- Multi-currency support: Manage your finances in different currencies.
Bunq operates in Italy and several other European countries. They offer personal and joint accounts with an EU IBAN, making international transactions seamless.
Benefits for students:
- Easy online account opening: No need to visit a branch.
- Budgeting and saving tools: Track your expenses and reach your financial goals.
- Instant payments: Send and receive money instantly to other Bunq users.
- Multi-language support: Access the app in your preferred language.
Another online banking solution for international students in Italy is Monese. With their easy online account opening, you’ll get an Italian IBAN for local and international payments.
- Multi-currency accounts: Manage your finances in different currencies.
- Business accounts: Ideal for student entrepreneurs.
- Direct debits and standing orders: Set up recurring payments conveniently.
- Budgeting tools and spending insights: Manage your money effectively.
- Customer support: Available in multiple languages, including English and Italian.
Wise, formerly known as TransferWise, is a fintech company offering a unique solution for international students in Italy. Their borderless accounts provide you with local bank details for euros, pounds, and up to eight other major currencies. This means you can receive student loans, pay bills, and manage your finances in euros, all while avoiding hefty transfer fees.
Why Wise is ideal for international students:
- Multi-currency accounts: Hold and manage over 50 currencies in one account. Convert between them instantly with the real exchange rate.
- Local bank details: Receive payments and make withdrawals in euros using your Italian IBAN.
- Low transfer fees: Save money compared to traditional banks when sending and receiving money internationally.
- Free account opening and maintenance: No fees associated with opening or maintaining your Wise account.
Read also: How to open Italian bank account online
Best Italian Banks for Foreign Students
Choosing the best bank in Italy for foreign students depends on your preferences and needs. However, here are some best banks in Italy known for their services and benefits that cater to international students:
- UniCredit: UniCredit is one of the largest banks in Italy and offers a range of banking services for students, including dedicated packages with special benefits, such as lower fees, favorable exchange rates, and access to online banking.
- Intesa Sanpaolo: Intesa Sanpaolo is a prominent bank in Italy that provides student current account options with features tailored to the needs of international students. They offer online and mobile banking, discounted fees, and international payment services.
- Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS): MPS is one of the oldest banks in Italy and offers student accounts with various benefits, including fee waivers, multi-currency accounts, and access to their extensive ATM network.
- Hype: Hype is an online neobank that offers fee-free current accounts and debit cards. With Hype, you can enjoy the convenience of having your own Italian IBAN. It also provides free ATM withdrawals in Italy and the Eurozone.
- Fineco Bank: Fineco Bank is a digital bank in Italy that provides services specifically designed for students. They offer zero fees for account management, debit card usage, and ATM withdrawals, along with a user-friendly mobile app for convenient banking.
- Poste Italiane: Poste Italiane is the national postal service in Italy, which also offers banking services. They have student account options with no account management fees and various perks, such as free online banking and access to Poste ATMs.
- Widiba: Widiba is an online bank in Italy that offers student account options with benefits like zero monthly fees, free transactions, and access to a user-friendly online platform for banking operations.
- CheBanca!: CheBanca! is a digital bank in Italy that offers student accounts with competitive features, such as no maintenance fees, free debit card usage, online banking, and mobile apps for easy account management.
- BNL (Banca Nazionale del Lavoro): BNL provides specific account packages for students, including fee-free accounts, access to a network of ATMs, and personalized assistance for international students.
How to Add Money Into Your Student Account
To add funds to your new Italian student bank account, you can deposit cash at an ATM or bank branch, transfer money from another bank account, or receive a wire transfer from abroad.
If you choose to deposit cash at an ATM, be aware that most Italian ATMs only serve in Italian. If you need help, you can ask a fellow student who speaks Italian or your student association.
Fees for Bank Accounts for Students in Italy
Student accounts in Italy typically come with reduced or waived fees to cater to the specific needs of students. These accounts often have no monthly account maintenance fees, providing cost savings. Some banks also offer fee-free ATM withdrawals within their network or designated regions, while others may charge fees for using ATMs outside their network. It’s important to check for any international transaction fees associated with currency conversions or overseas transactions. Additionally, there may be fees for overdraft facilities or card replacements.
To find the best student account with favorable fee structures, it’s recommended to compare offerings from different banks such as the ones listed above and consider your specific banking needs.
Best Banks for Foreign Students in Italy: A Guide
Choosing the right bank account in Italy for foreigners studying in Italy is crucial. With various options available, it’s important to consider factors such as fees, services, accessibility, and additional benefits. The banks we have listed here are among the recommended banks for their dedicated student account options. These banks offer advantages like fee-free accounts, discounted fees, international transactions, online banking, and ATM access. By selecting a bank that aligns with your specific needs, you can enjoy cheaper and efficient banking experiences during your studies in Italy.
Can an international student open a bank account in Italy?
Yes, international students in Italy can open a bank account. While the particular requirements differ by bank, the majority of Italian banks provide account options for foreign students in Italy.
Which bank is good for students in Italy?
Yes. Several banks in Italy offer student accounts, including UniCredit, Intesa Sanpaolo, CheBanca!, Fineco Bank, and Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS).
How to open a bank account in Italy with a student visa?
To open a bank account in Italy with a student visa, choose a bank that offers student accounts, gather required documents (passport, student visa, proof of enrollment, proof of address, fiscal code), visit the bank in person or online, complete the application.
Can a foreigner open a bank account in Italy?
Yes, foreigners can open a bank account in Italy. Whether you are an EU citizen, a non-EU citizen, or a non-resident, you have the right to open a bank account in Italy. However, the specific requirements and procedures may vary depending on your residency status and the bank's policies