Bank Account in South Africa

Like banking systems of other countries, South African banks offer bank accounts to foreign and local residents as well as citizens. The guide below is for foreign residents as provided by a FNB representative.

Requirements to open a South African Bank Account

Please note that requirements can differ depending on the bank or credit union chosen but we are using the First National Bank (FNB) - a division of FirstRand Bank Limited which is an South African Authorised Financial Services and Credit Provider (NCRCP20) as current as 2013

Opening a South African Bank Account for a local resident or Citizen at FNB

FNB offers a number of ways to apply to open an account including applying online at or visit a FNB branch.

Existing FNB Account: For example if you wish to open a fixed deposit as an existing FNB client, you can open a Fixed Deposit Account through your Online Banking profile.

New FNB Account: New customers to FNB will be required to complete a "Know Your Customer" (KYC) check. This can occur only at a FNB Branch before you can open your account.

Requirements and proof documents that you may need to bring for proof of identity checks to open an account include: South African green bar-coded identity document or a valid passport or a copy of the relevant permit is required if you are a Foreign National. In addition a physical address through a recent utility bill account including water, telephone electricity. An income tax number if it has been issued to yourself.

Opening a South African Bank Account a foreign resident at FNB

FNB can open a Non-Resident or Emigrant blocked account for you at its Non-Resident Centre, a virtual branch of FNB.

The required documents are as follows and need to be completed as specified:

  • Form CBS 10C: (personal details)
  • Non-Resident Declaration
  • Waiver and Indemnity
  • Signature card
  • Please note that the signature card needs to be signed on the left-hand side in the box with the (x)

    The non-resident declaration and Waiver and Indemnity need to be completed and Notarized in the presence of a Notary Public, Justice of the Peace, Solicitor or any person who may perform the duties of a Commissioner of Oaths.

    Additional documents required from you for the opening of the accounts are:

  • Clear certified copy of proof of physical address not older than three months (gas bill)
  • Clear certified copy of your passport/ID
  • 3 months bank statements from or Letter of Introduction from your bank abroad
  • Ensure all documentation is in English alternatively, it would need to be translated before being sent to FNB.
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  • Once documentation is completed you may forward the documents to: FNB Non-Resident Centre Virtual Banking, on Fax number +2711 371 7621 or scan and Email nonres REMOVE@ the original application forms and notarized documents must be posted to P O Box 1153, Johannesburg, 2000.

  • Find the highest interest for South African Bank Accounts

    In South Africa, for interest bearing bank accounts that offer liquid access to funds - South African banks offer Savings Accounts

    For higher interest than savings accounts but lower liquidity banks with chosen upfront fixed period options on funds, banks offer Fixed Deposits.