The banking system in Romania

Opening a bank account in Romania
Updated 2021-07-20 13:55

The community of expats in Romania is becoming more and more numerous. Therefore, opening a bank account is mandatory when planning a long stay in this country. The procedures are not that complicated but differ from bank to bank. Here are the general formalities expats need to know, along with the benefits of banking in Romania. 

 Good to know:

Despite being a member of the European Union, Romania has not yet adopted the euro. Therefore, the local economy still uses the Romanian leu.

The banking system in Romania

Romania has 37 commercial banks, which, in turn, have somewhere around 6,500 branches across the country. Among the most important ones is the Romania Commercial Bank. CEC Bank, ING Bank, Transilvania Bank, and Raiffeisen Bank. All the banking system is governed by the National Bank of Romania, which has the head office in Bucharest. Foreigners will also find a large number of international banks across the country. 

Conditions for opening an account in Romania

The process of opening a bank account is not that laborious, but mandatory to proceed. You do not need to be a resident of Romania first of all. Then, expats need to call the bank they are interested in and schedule an appointment with one of the bank officers. Make sure that you have the passport with you and you know the list of requirements of the specific bank. 

You can choose to open an account with Euros and Romanian LEU. Or you can have separate accounts for both of the currencies. Also, it is mandatory to deposit into your account a minimum amount of money, so the account will become operational. 

Documents you need for opening a bank account in Romania

For a foreigner, it is mandatory to have the following documents to open a bank account:

  • Passport;
  • Tax residency;
  • Employment contract/Payslips;
  • Proof of address, such as the utility bills or the renting contract;
  • Previous bank statements. 

Note that some banks might ask for further documents, depending on the specific situation you are going through. 

Types of bank accounts in Romania

There are some standard bank accounts that expats can open at most of the banks in Romania. These are the basic account, the credit account, the savings account, and so on. The banking fees, the commissions, as well as the conditions and interest rates, will depend on a bank to bank policies. Therefore, foreigners are encouraged to compare the offers from different banks before making any choice. 

Bank fees in Romania 

Romanian bank fees are of great importance when opening an account. Nobody wants to pay lots of expensive fees just for using a bank account. The services you get will be charged, but it's important to be aware of the costs. It's always a good idea to consult the price list of the bank you are opening the account in. Or you can go for a simpler way, and ask your banker directly. The list of prices is generally available on the internet, so it will be easy to find the fees you are looking for. 

Debit card and credit card in Romania

The debit card and the credit card are the most common types of bank accounts foreigners can open in Romania. The differences are important to know.

Debit cards:

  • Are tied directly to the checking account;
  • A debit card can be used wherever you would use a credit card;
  • You will need to use a PIN for completing the transactions.

Credit cards:

  • The credit cards are a line of credit that foreigners can access with their own card;
  • Generally, you will have to sign on all the purchases you are doing with the credit card;
  • You need to pay the interest on the purchases made in case you didn't pay off in 30 days.

 Useful links:

National Bank of Romania
National Bank of Romania ' List of banks in Romania

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.