Opening a Personal Bank Account

If you're intending to live in Colombia, you'll probably be opening a personal bank account in Colombia.

An Account Sets the Stage for a Credit Rating

Establishing a bank account in Colombia is an important step in earning a credit rating in this country--which will enable you to apply for a loan in Colombia when you're ready to buy property here. It will also allow you to pay your bills in pesos rather than paying a currency exchange fee to your bank back home for each transaction you make.

The Cédula

Before opening a personal bank account, you will need to get a cédula (Colombian ID card). Our office can help you apply for and obtain a cédula de extranjería (foreigner's cedula) along with a work or residence visa. Most banks will not open a personal account for a foreigner without a cédula, with a few exceptions. For example, if you are employed by a Colombian company and are paid on a regular basis, you might be considered for an account with only your passport.

Background Checks and Other Requirements

There are many large banks in Colombia: Bancolombia, Davivienda, Banco de Occidente, and more. They will all run a background check on you to see if you have any outstanding warrants worldwide. Certain criminal histories, such as those pertaining to drugs or money laundering, could result in denial of your application.

Aside from that, each bank could have a slightly different list of requirements, so we'll double check with your bank of choice to find out exactly what documents are required to be considered for your new account.

After that, the process is similar to applying for a loan. The bank will want to verify your income (so be ready to provide financial records) and confirm the origin of your funds. It's important to take care in following the regulations for wiring money to Colombia


How We Can Help

Don't worry about perfecting your bank-related Spanish, as we are able to help you with that part of the process, as well. Our representative will accompany you to the bank to make sure everything goes smoothly and every word is understood.

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