Opening an Account

How to open a bank account in Belgium

Opening an account is generally a quick and simple process in Belgium. Banks usually require only your passport or other identification in order to open a current account ( compte à vue/zichtrekening).

You can even pre-open your account and receive your code numbers to manage your account before you arrive in Belgium and receive your bank and credit cards when you go to your first appointment with your bank adviser.

You can receive statements as often as you like, e.g. monthly, weekly or even daily if you want to keep a close check on your account. There is, of course, a charge for this service and the more frequently you want statements, the more expensive it will be. If you don’t specify otherwise, you will normally receive one or two statements per month. You can also use your bank card or Internet connection to review your account balance and check recent transactions at any time.

Savings Accounts

In addition to a current account, you can open several different types of savings accounts with most banks. Belgium exempts a certain amount of savings account interest from income taxes, and there’s a variety of savings plans available designed to permit you to save money for any purpose.

With deposit accounts (term deposits) you must be prepared to invest for a period of up to 12 months. In general, the longer the term, the higher the return, but that depends on the interest rates of the market. You receive a pass book for a savings account, where all deposits and withdrawals are recorded.

This article is an extract from Living and Working in Holland, Belgium & Luxembourg. Click here to get a copy now.

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Further reading

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