Bank Account

Account know-how

Melbourne, Vic.  Photo credit: Emily Fitzgerald/Tourism Victoria

Bank Account

Do I need an Australian bank account?
That money you’re earning has to go somewhere…

If you’re simply travelling in Australia then you don’t need an Australian account; your existing account and cards will be fine.

But what if you’re earning and need to pay money in?

Setting up an Australian bank account
You can’t set up an account without an address in Australia. If you’re working your way from state to state that might prove tricky – so set up a PO Box with the post office instead at

Setting up an account is easy. A number of Australian banks give you the option of setting up an account online before you leave the UK. That means your cards can be ready on your arrival and you can start getting paid immediately.

If you choose to open an account at your preferred bank when you reach Australia you’ll need your passport and you may need an additional form of identification. You may also have to supply copies of bank statements from the UK so, if you can’t access and print them online, take 6 months’ statements with you.

Whether you’re allowed to open an account is determined by a points system. You should have all the points you need when you produce your passport within 6 weeks of your arrival.


Account know-how


Remember to give your UK address as well as your Australian one. That way you’ll be registered as non-resident for tax purposes.

Most Australian banks charge for their accounts unless you deposit a certain amount each month. Check before you sign-up.

Asked for your BSB? That’s the Aussie equivalent of your sort code.

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