For immigrants or expats living and working in Bangladesh it can take some time to get used to the banking system. There are certain nuances you may not be used to in your home country.
You may be wondering, how do I open a bank account in Bangladesh?
Or, what do I need to do if I’m living abroad but want to bank in Bangladesh?
If you’re a student you may even be thinking about opening a student account too.
In this post we’ll give you an overview of what it takes to open a bank account in Bangladesh.
We’ll discuss how to transfer money and the overall logistics of banking in Bangladesh.
How to open a bank account in Bangladesh
There are currently 61 scheduled banks across Bangladesh. The process of opening a bank account in Bangladesh will differ from bank to bank.
It will also be different if you are not a citizen or resident of Bangladesh. Whether you are based in the sprawling metropolis of Dhaka or a smaller city like Jamalpur will also impact your ability to bank.
It is not as confusing as it sounds, we’re here to help you.
For a Bangladesh resident a standard individual bank account at a major Bangladeshi bank like National Bank Limited or Agrani Bank Limited will require the following documents:
- A valid passport, Bangladeshi employer ID card, voter ID card or other type of official document/certificate that displays your photo and bears a signature from the Bangladeshi government.
- An estimated transaction profile. This will show both the value and volume of anticipated transactions and will enable the Bank to monitor transactions and keep your money safe.
- A completed application form provided by the bank
- Two passport-sized photos of the account holder
- A signed specimen signature card completed in front of bank personnel
These are the common things you will need if you go to a branch of a bank in Bangladesh and try to open an account.
The processes and nuances may be slightly different in each bank but this list gives you a good indication of the standard procedures and items required.
You can find further guidance on the regulation and management of Bangladesh’s banking system by visiting the website of the Central Bank of Bangladesh. There you will find information that will make it easier for you to choose a bank in Bangladesh that is right for you.
Online banking in Bangladesh
Around the world many banks are striving to make their banking experience as mobile and convenient as possible.
Online banking is one of the most important elements of a modern and competent bank. In Bangladesh the online banking experience is quite common among most of the large banks.
HSBC, in particular, offers internet banking services in Bangladesh (https://www.hsbc.com.bd/1/2/retail-banking/services/internet-banking) that are comparable to the services they provide around the world. They have 13 branches in Bangladesh across cities like Dhaka, Chittagong, Mymensingh and Sylhet.
With an HSBC online account in Bangladesh you can perform most of the basic functions like checking your balance, reading statements and paying bills, completely online. You can set up your online account at the same time as you open your account in-person at your branch.
In most cases you will need a phone number that is registered with the bank and the card. In this respect, online banking in Bangladesh is similar to the experience in most countries around the world.
Opening a bank account in Bangladesh from abroad
Opening a bank account while abroad is also a different process. You may want to know how to open a bank account in Bangladesh from the UK or France or the United States.
Well, your ability can be quite restricted if you are living abroad but there are still several viable options for you to consider.
Some banks like Dutch-Bangla Bank enable you to open an International account. Similarly, Standard Chartered in Bangladesh allows non-residents to open a foreign currency account for deposits in GBP, Yen and USD. Deposits must be made in foreign cash only but the account can be opened completely from abroad.
Alternatively, some banks will allow you to nominate an existing Bangladeshi resident to vouch for you by cosigning the opening of your account.
So while there isn't the same degree of financial flexibility for non-residents as there is for residents of Bangladesh, there are still workable options available to you.
How to open an account in Bangladesh with Dutch-Bangla Bank
Dutch-Bangla Bank (DBBL) was founded in 1995 and is based in Dhaka. They are one of the country’s major banks. Here we’ll walk you through how you can open an account in Bangladesh with DBBL and get yourself up and running.
DBBL has an Agent Banking system that is ideal for new customers who may live in rural locations and lack access to a formal banking system.
To register you will be required to present the following:
- NID/Any Photo ID card
- Two copies of passport size photograph
- One copy of your nominee's passport size photograph.
- Duly filled and sign Agent Banking account opening form
It is a good idea to have all these forms and documents prepared and copied before you start any bank applications. This will save you time and prevent any unnecessary hassle when you go to open an account.
The registration process at DBBL will usually then go like this:
- An agent will initiate account registration through a device.
- Agent will capture the applicant’s fingerprint.
- The account number will then be displayed on the device and the customer will get the account number through SMS notification if a mobile number is available.
This kind of DBBL account is particularly useful if you want to conveniently bank anywhere in the country. It is an example of how accessible banking operates in Bangladesh.
Banks in Bangladesh
Now you know how to open a bank account it helps to have a list of banks in Bangladesh to choose from.
Here are a few of the biggest and best banks in Bangladesh that are partnered with Small World:
- National Bank Limited
- Uttara Bank Limited
- Agrani Bank Limited
- Dutch-Bangla Bank
- Social Islami Bank
- Union Bank LTD
- Bank Asia Limited
- SBCA Bank Limited
There are a variety of private and public banks in Bangladesh to choose from. You can find a list of all banks serving Bangladesh here. By exploring their individual websites you’ll be able to discern which banks will be accessible to you.
Whether you choose to bank with a local bank, a commercial bank, or a foreign or specialised bank in Bangladesh, you can also rely on Small World to help with any of your money transfer needs.
Using Small World
Hopefully you now have a good idea of how you can transfer money to a Bangladesh bank account and how the banking system in Bangladesh works in general.
Whether you are a Bangladeshi resident or you’re living abroad and want to set up an international account, there are plenty of banking options available to you.
Small World’s money transfer services can make the process of sending money simple. Once you have a bank account in Bangladesh or your loved one has one, you can easily transfer money via bank deposit as well.
The process is quick, safe and easy because we know how important it is to be able to support and care for your loved ones.