How to open one
New Zealand bank account is absolutely essential matter, because without an active NZ account, you can not ask for a IRD number. In recent years, opening an account became a bit complicated, mainly due to differences in recognition of address confirmation called proof of address.
You can open your bank account online prior you arrival from overseas. It is simple and it saves you time.
Choose your bank
Most often you will meet brands ANZ, BNZ, KiwiBank, Westpac and ASB. All those banks allow you to open your account online from overseas, but they have different approach. This is what we have confirmed straight by every single one:
ANZ - absolutely easy to open your account online from overseas
BNZ - they let you open your account only if you have employment secured (so almost useless)
KiwiBank - to open your account online they ask for certified copy of passport, which is forbidden in some countries
Westpac - we received automatic answer only
ASB - we received no answer at all
Open your account online
Because of the reasons given above we recommend you to open an account with ANZ.
Open your account online here and choose GO ACCOUNT.
As soon as you open your account, you can transfer some money through TransferWise. You won´t have access into the internet banking and you won´t be able to transfer money out of the account. To be able to do that you have to activate your account in person.
To activate your account you just arrange a meeting in some ANZ branch. Avoid branch offices in center of Auckland, they are usually really busy and you can get your date in a week or even later.
To activate your account you have to bring:
- copy of your e-visa
- details of your account (account number)
- proof of address
Proof of address
Some people had issues with proof of address. This is official statement from ANZ, as a proof of address they acknowledge:
- for overseas address: utility bill, rates bill, government department document, local council notice, court document, tenancy agreement, tax notice/certificate, insurance policy document.
* It must be with the same overseas address as the address you provide us for opening your account; online statements, PDF copies of bills/documents will not be accepted.
- New Zealand address : i.e. hotel/motel invoice or letter from hotel/confirming your stay, tenancy agreement
ANZ requires you to complete our identification procedure in New Zealand within 90 days of the account being opened. If not, the account may be closed without any notification.
Open your account in person upon arrival
Of course you can open your account upon arrival. The paperwork is pretty much the same as for the online opening. You can be surprised by long waiting times especially in the center of Auckland. And you will have to visit the branch office twice - first time to open the account, second time to pick up your cards. That´s another reason to open your account online prior your arrival.