Find the answers to many of your expat questions here

View Latest Posts

You're missing out...

As a member you can enjoy exclusive info and offers.


Bank account

Posted by itsbusiness-695946 - Created: 9 years ago
0 0
Sorry no image available

9 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 9)

Sorry no image available
Posted by johnners-660966 - 9 years ago

The extra checks are for people wanting to open accounts without visiting a bank in person. If you can use 'face mail' rather than 'email' the process is much easier. If you visit a bank branch they can physically examine your passport and utility bills and be pretty sure who you claim to be.

If you are trying to open a Cypriot account from the UK via email then the banks are asking for references just to prove who you are. It gives them extra protection to stop money laundering and accounts being used for 'illegal and unsavory practices'

Depending where you are in the UK you could go to the Bank of Cyprus or Laiki Bank to open an account as they have branches in London and Birmingham.


Sorry no image available
Posted by mhuntington - 9 years ago

Dont quite understand som of these replies.

I am non resident (will be moving over soon) and opened a current account with additional sterling account and cashcards and cheque book with Alpha bank purely with passport and address of my villa. (all done couple fo years ago)

Due to problems in Greece and Alpha being based there, 2 weeks ago I went to Bank of Cyprus in Coral Bay to open an account witht them. Again passport, address few forms and I now have current account, savings, sterling and American Express.

Not really sure why they would ask for reference. Never did with me.???

Sorry no image available
Posted by itsbusiness-695946 - 9 years ago

Hi Ali,

You are right. I already received an email of Bank of Cyprus confirming this.


Sorry no image available
Posted by aliscot - 9 years ago


I opened a bank account with bank of cyprus last week and all i needed was my passport and proof of address. I simply walked into the local branch and they were very helpful. Five days later i had my new bank card and have set up standing orders etc all without any problem.

Maybe visiting the branch in person is the answer

Hope this helps


Sorry no image available
Posted by Graham S - 9 years ago

This must be something fairly new - when we opened our current account with the Laiki Bank about 3 or 4 years ago all they wanted was some ID (passport), a current utility bill and some cash to put into the new account.



Sorry no image available
Posted by bill&eva - 9 years ago

I suppose it depends what kind of bank account you want .

If it's just a simple savings account then most banks will open a account for you with just your passport as the ID and provision of a Cyprus or UK address but if it's a cheque/ current account you want then the bank quite rightly wants to be sure that you will conduct your account in a proper manner either by a letter of introduction from your current UK bank or by personal recommodation from someone you know who banks there .

Banks in Cyprus have become very careful over the last couple of years due to in part the global financial crisis.

I had a savings account with the Bank of Cyprus for a couple of years ~( without producing any ID ) and changed over to a current account just before I came here to live without any problems as they already knew me as a customer .

Cyprus banks can be quite flexible and do things that many UK banks wouldn't but they first need to know you are a safe person to deal with.

If time is not important open up a savings account and then approach them about a current/cheque account later~ if time is important get a letter of introduction from your present bank as they have requested or if you know of someone who has a account at the bank you are interested in ask them to vouch for you .

Emailing establishments whether banking or otherwise doesn't usually produce a response ~ much better to call them ~ I'm sure the phone number can be found from their web pages.

best of luck


Sorry no image available
Posted by kciseddoh - 9 years ago

Not sure if you are aware, but Cyprus do not have a credit refrence agency agency.

If you have a friend that banks with that particular bank ! you can ask them to introduce you to the bank.

Sorry no image available
Posted by lime-676998 - 9 years ago

I think that this is standard practice in most countries - to ask for references from other banks. There are many reasons for this, which you can google yourself. Of course, in some cases banks are willing to relax this requirement, especially if they get references from some professionals who are aware of your financial standing.

Sorry no image available
Posted by itsbusiness-695946 - 9 years ago

FYI, both USB, Laikie, Bank of Cyprus confirmed this to me.
For the other ones, I am still waiting for their response on my second email.