Author Topic: Exciting new opportunity- Bank account in Dollar AND GBP?  (Read 590 times)

Reddleman

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 103
As a teacher I travel a lot, but never for more than a few weeks.  Luckily I was just awarded a Fulbright Distinguished Awards in teaching grant!  So they will be paying me to study/research in the UK from January to June of 2019!

Among the many things I have to arrange for is the financial bit.  They will be putting my stipend and award in an account.  While I could use a domestic account, I'd love to have something that's easy to deal with:
1. online as well as in a physical branch while in the UK.
2. able to accept deposits and withdrawals in USD/GBP/(maybe euro) without incurring regular fees or unfavorable exchange rates.
3. able to give me a good chip and pin card when in the UK.
4. anything else I'm too unknowlegeable to know is probably important (please let me know what that is!)

I know just about any account would do, but I'll be regularly using it until I go to deposit funds stateside, and withdraw funds when in the UK. I will have to open the account in the next few days for my initial deposit.

Anyone who lives/works/regularly travels between the US/UK have any tips?

katsiki

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1100
  • Age: 38
  • Location: La.
Re: Exciting new opportunity- Bank account in Dollar AND GBP?
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2018, 08:31:43 AM »
Fidelity Cash Management account and Schwab work great internationally.  It won't check all of your boxes but it might work.

Orin!

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 52
Re: Exciting new opportunity- Bank account in Dollar AND GBP?
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2018, 09:51:35 AM »
What I did was just a credit card with no international fee for the beginning.

I changed my address to my UK address on a couple of my banks so they mailed my statement there. Specifically Bank of America. And make sure to de check paperless.

After about six weeks the statement arrived and I used that as proof of residence in UK and opened up a checking account there (called a current account). I did Barclays in branch. You have to set an appointment there you canít just do a walk in and say iíd Like to open an account.

Then I signed up for TransferWise at www.transferwise.com as you can use that to transfer currencies almost fee free (less than .5% as compared to the usually +5%). You can send between your UK account and USA account, and vice versa. Then I signed up for a TransferWise boarderless account and debit card which hooks up to an account that has GBP USD and EUROs. But you have to use your UK address or they wonít give it to you.

Or the USA Fidelity or Schwab account mentioned above let you withdraw from your USA account at UK atms without much exchange fee (they say none but I believe it is actually 1% from live rate.)


SmileAllDay

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 9
    • So, where were we?
Re: Exciting new opportunity- Bank account in Dollar AND GBP?
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2018, 11:30:41 AM »
Yeah, Transferwise is a game-changer when you work between two or more currencies like I do. Can't recommend it enough. It even gives you things like an IBAN (https://www.sowherewerewe.com/how-to-get-an-iban-as-an-american/)

If you're Bank of America, they're part of the Global ATM Alliance with Barclays in UK, BNP Paribas in France and a few others. It essentially means you sidestep some of the fees. Best to take out cash in bulk (I do 300 per withdrawal to eat the fee). (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_ATM_Alliance)

The Charles Schwab a/c reimburses all ATM fees internationally which is unreal. I'm going to open an account in the coming weeks (although depositing cash is a little more cumbersome than most online accounts) (https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/banking/charles-schwab-bank-review/)

Hope this helps. Congrats on the scholarship man!