Opening a bank account

Opening a bank account in France can be useful to be able to manage your money, but also to find a job.
In this article, we will guide you to choose what suits you best: online? With an agency?


Choose the right bank

To choose your bank, you can use a bank comparator like this one:

open a bank account

Open a bank account online

The benefits of online banking

Most of the time, people turn to online banking because it’s easily accessible,
but also due to the much lower fees compared to physical banks.

Financial consultant are often available on longer time slots.
Moreover, you don’t need to go to an agency, you can contact them directly from home.

In many cases, when you open an account with an online bank, you will receive an amount ranging from 80 to 130 euros.
If you want to open a savings account, you’ll enjoy the best rates!


The disadvantages of online banking

Be careful, many online banks require a minimum income to obtain a card (at least 1200 euros).
Cash deposit is often impossible, as cheque deposit, which must be sent by mail.


How obtain your social security number?

How do I open an account in an online bank?

To open an online bank account, you need to determine the services you need.
Do you need an individual account? A joint account? What type of credit card do you need?

Most of the time, you will have to fill in an online form and then validate
your account opening request thanks to a code received by email.
After you have printed and signed your application, you will need to collect supporting documents.
For example, to open a bank account at La Banque Postale you will need a valid ID,
and if you are from a foreign country you can provide one of the documents here

Proof of residence

Proof of earnings :
— Last pay slip (less than 2 months old).
— A certificate from your employer or your employment contract
specifying the remuneration (less than 2 months old).

— The last income tax/non-tax notice or the ASDIR (avis de situation déclarative à l’impôt sur le revenu).

— And any other proof of income: pension, retirement, social benefits
(CAF, ASSEDIC, RSA, …), land income, income from self-employment, etc.

Once the file is complete, you can either finalize it online, in an agency, or send it by mail. It depends on the bank.


Examples of online banking for individuals

Online banking without income : Monabanq ; Hello bank ; Eko ; Orange Bank ;
N26 (german bank) ; Revolut (british bank) and ING

Online banking with minimum incomes : Fortuneo, Boursorama ; BforBank


Open a bank account in a branch

The benefits of a network bank

A network bank is a bank with a branch. Even if you choose a bank with a physical branch,
this banks allow you to manage your accounts and expenses via an application or their website.

Unlike 100% digital banks, network banks impose very few entry requirements and no minimum income.
These banks offer a wider range of services than digital banks, such as mortgages, repatriation insurance, home insurance, etc.

If you want to become a entrepreneur, these banks have services and offer adapted to business accounts.

What differentiates them most clearly from online banks is access to a local service!

The inconveniences of a network bank

A local service that involves less time slots than online banking.
Moreover, these banks are sometimes overloaded in terms of appointments, you have to be patient to get one!

They’re more expensive than online banking. You do have to pay for the extra services.

They’re often criticised for the lack of clarity of their offers and the non-transparency of their tariffs.


How do I open an account in a network bank?

open a bank account

Creating an account in a branch is often longer than with digital banks.

However, discussing your needs with an advisor will allow you to choose the account
and services best suited to your profile. You will be asked for the same supporting documents.

If you want a bank with a branch, we recommend banks located in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 16th district of Paris.
In these districts, you will always find an English-speaking banker!


Absolutely French is the first French school ?? dedicated only to expat spouses.
Our main mission is to promote double career among expatriate couples.
With our fun, friendly and innovative French trainings, we guarantee you a better integration ❤️ !

You want to learn with us?

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Contact us!
Tel: 01 83 73 98 49
Address: 4, rue Faraday 75017 Paris



To read :

How to find a job in France as an expat partner : 5 key points

10 good reasons to learn French with Absolutely French