In the modern world, it’s common for individuals and businesses to make transactions in different currencies. But with most current and savings accounts, these purchases usually come with conversion fees. Over time, these charges start to add up. That’s where multi-currency bank accounts come in.
Table of contents
Continue reading to discover:
- What are multi-currency accounts?
- The benefits of multi-currency accounts
- The disadvantages of multi-currency accounts
- Multi-currency business accounts
- How to open a multi-currency account
- The best multi-currency accounts
What are multi-currency accounts?
They’re exactly what they say on the tin. Multi-currency accounts are bank accounts held in more than one currency. Rather than having one balance like a current or savings account, a multi-currency account has several balances, depending on which currencies it holds.
The benefits of multi-currency accounts
You might be wondering, “Why do I need a multi-currency account”? Great question. The advantages of multi-currency accounts include:
- Holding different currencies in one place.
- Getting paid or receiving money in different currencies.
- Spending in different currencies without paying conversion fees.
The disadvantages of multi-currency accounts
Depending on your circumstances, a multi-currency account may not be the right option. For instance, if you rarely go overseas or purchase items in foreign currencies, there’s probably no point in having one. Other disadvantages of multi-currency accounts could include:
- Additional fees for opening the account.
- Annual maintenance charges.
- High minimum opening balance requirements.
- Low interest rates.
If you just need to send money to relatives overseas, you’re better off with a specialist money transfer company like Azimo.
A combination of an extensive remittance network, a low fee and fair, exchange rates makes Azimo a better match for your transfers.
Multi-currency business accounts.
If you’re a business owner making regular overseas payments, a multi-currency account could be the answer. That’s because a multi-currency account makes collecting funds from marketplaces or directly from your customers easier.
There are also significant savings to be made in terms of banking costs, forex and time management by using one account instead of several.
How to open a multi-currency account
The good news is that opening a global currency account is usually straightforward. A bank clerk can walk you through the steps in-branch or you can apply online. If you’re creating your account over the internet, the application typically involves:
- Completing an application form.
- Uploading your identification documents such as a passport or driving licence.
- Taking and submitting a verification photograph or selfie.
- Recording and submitting a verification video.
The best multi-currency bank accounts
If you’re in the market for a multi-currency account, look no further than a digital bank. These newer, independent providers offer faster, cheaper and more secure payment and currency management features.
Additionally, you still get many of the benefits of traditional bank accounts, without the hefty fees. That’s because, for currency conversions, their rates are also some of the fairest on the market. And they’re usually transparent about the exact fees you pay. Furthermore, you’ll even be able to get local bank account details in a variety of countries.
The best multi-currency account providers include:
- Wise (formerly TransferWise).