Setting up a bank account

Updated on 9 May 2024

You'll need to make sure you have a bank account for coming to University. For UK students, this may mean changing to a student account or, for international students, setting up a UK based account.

On this page
Bank accounts you can open without visiting a branch

Banks near to a University campus



Online banks

These banks do not have branches, you open and use your account through an iOS or Android app

Opening a UK bank account (for EU / International students)

Do not bring large amounts of cash to the UK

We recommend no more than about £200 cash and up to £500 on a prepaid Visa / MasterCard for immediate expenses 

You should organise your financial arrangements soon after arriving in Dundee. It is a good idea to open a UK bank account and transfer money into it as soon as possible.

To make it easier to access and transfer money to your UK account you can:

  • open an account in your home country with a multi-national bank
  • check your home bank allows cash withdrawal from UK banks
  • sign up for internet banking with your home bank
  • apply for a credit card in your home country for use in the UK

UK bank branches are normally open 09:30 to 17:00, Monday to Friday. All have 24-hour automatic cash machines. To open an account you will have to complete an application and provide the following documents:

  • your passport
  • your university admission letter and acceptance certificate
  • funds to deposit
  • documentary proof of your local address in the UK

Some international students have encountered difficulties when opening a bank account. This is due to an increased security to prevent money laundering (fraud). Bank staff require various documents and will ask many questions. Please do not feel that you are personally under suspicion, however frustrating it may be.

Proof of address

Different banks will have different policies when it comes to opening accounts.

You may be asked to provide any of the following documents as proof of your address in the UK:

  • University residences: your lease agreement or a letter of introduction from the University which can normally be printed from eVision. Please ensure your letter is of good quality and in colour if possible. Banks may reject poor quality prints.
  • private accommodation: a letting agency tenancy agreement, a utility bill, or a personal possessions insurance policy

If you experience any difficulties, please contact the International Student Adviser at

Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) delays and temporary addresses

Some international students have experienced:

  • a significant delay to the delivery of their BRP card from the Home Office
  • delays in finding or organising permanent private accommodation

If you have not yet received your BRP card or are currently living in a hotel before you move to a permanent address, you may still be able to open a bank account.

The following banks will allow you to open a bank account with no BRP, and using a temporary address. You will need:

  • your passport for identification 
  • a Letter of Introduction to UK banks (you can download or print this from eVision)
    • if you are using temporary accommodation, make sure the temporary address is printed on your letter of introduction

Bank of Scotland

  • You can sign up for a Classic account online or using the Bank of Scotland app.
  • If you do not have a permanent address, select address not listed when registering and then enter your temporary accommodation address.


  • Apply for Essentials Current Account (£1 monthly charge) or Basic Current Account (no monthly charge). 


  • Nationwide require any temporary addresses to have a secure mailbox.

Whichever bank you account you apply for, make sure all personal data (name, address) matches exactly in your bank letter, identification documents and application

You can also attend our drop-in sessions in the Global Room at the times below or email

  • Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11:00 - 13:00
  • Tuesday, Thursday 12:00 - 13:00

Pre-sessional students

If you are here on a short term visa (under 3 months) banking regulations may prevent some banks from opening an account for you.

However, some students with short term visa have been able to open a basic cash account at HSBC or Barclays for an additional fee.

If you experience any difficulties, please contact the International Student Adviser at

Exchange students

Bring an English translation confirming your enrolment at your home institution. It must show:

  • the institution name
  • course title
  • course start and end dates
  • your address in your home country

Bank statements

If you require bank statements, such as for visa extension purposes, you should order your statements one month in advance and ensure you have the required funds in your account over a period of 28 days. Banks will not normally issue statements over the counter on request.

Welcome to the University of Dundee

Make sure you visit our welcome web pages to view the full range of welcome guides, plus information on where you need to be and when during your first week at University