can i open bank account ?


next week I will in Shanghai for 2 weeks 

I am planning to open bank account

is it possible ?


You simply take your passport.  Fill out the forms.  You might have problems because it is all in Chinese. I would suggest you take a Chinese friend to help you. Alternatively, you can go to a main office, instead of a branch office, and go to the English counter and talk to the person there.

China banking is great.  Once you open a bank account, you and ONLY you can access it. Unlike the USA where the government can freeze your accounts, or a lawyer with a piece of paper, or the IRS.  Only the person with you FINGERPRINT can access your account.  Yessur!  Your money is safe in China.'s NOT reported to any foreign entity.  Your "personal papers" are safe and secure in China.

Chinese banks charge very low annual fee, yet their service is awfully slow, consider wasting half day every time you go there to get something done at the counter!
And like many banks in the world they leak customers info through the back door with all respects to the backdoors!
Do yourself a favor and deposit your money in foreign currency and only exchange the amount needed to local currency because of the tight restrictions on foreign currencies!
Do report back about your experience and enjoy your time in the 'Hai!

Hi, I’m in Shenzhen right now and I have been told “no” by two banks (Bank of China and ICBC). They asked for proof of residency and a work visa. I can not provide either.

Any advice? Anything is appreciated! Thanks.

WOW.  Sorry and SURPRISED to hear that you cannot open a Chinese bank account on a visitor visa.  I never had any problems.  I opened my first account back in 2002 with no problems.  I opened up a basic account and a passbook account.  No worries. After 2008 I was using a Z-visa with no problem.  After 2013 I have been using a Q2 family visa with no problems.

There must be some kind of rule change.


Thanks for getting back to me!

Very interesting...

After doing more and more research, it seems like it has become more strict for foreigners to open a Chinese bank account (maybe starting around Sept. of this year). I've been here for about a month and even some of my Chinese friends are confused about the whole situation. I thought it was going to be a painless process.

I picked up a copy of my Registration Form of Temporary Residence from my hotel. This is a form that one bank told me I needed (ICBC).

Tomorrow will be my last attempt by myself (I don't want to give up to easy). If I fail again, one of my Chinese buddies will accompany me.

I will keep you guys updated.

I am in shanghai rightnow
I have tried 4 different banks
They said i must have working Visa or approved business contracts and some Tax papers from your origin country
+proof of residence in china (hotel addresses not accepted)

They told rules are applied since july 2017 to all banks in china

Its getting very complicated unless you know someone working at these banks can pass these Strick requirements

That is apparently the law now.

To work in China as an expat you need a Z-visa.
As an expat, you need to sign documents so the USA can tax your earnings. (The rest can breathe easier.)

Makes sense.

I haven't had a bank account in a while, so I'm good.

It’s already been stated and the information is correct. As of sometime in 2017.. you now need more than a passport to open a bank account.  So you will not be able to do so unless you have a Z working visa or other acceptable. (Tourist is not). And other required documents.

I just noticed the age of this post.....
my phone didn't show that as clearly as my computer did... ooops.. ahhaha

maybe someone else has the same question hhaha

I guess Chinese banks are finally following formalities on automatic exchange of financial account information. They will have to define if you are a tax resident at one or multiple locations.

Can I open a bank account with M category visa ?

Well you will need a couple of documentation:
1. Passport
2. Employment letter
3. Work permit card (z visa is not enough. You will need to apply the work permit in china after your z visa is approved for you to come over to china)
4. Tax paying proof (china tax)
5. Accommodation info (rental contract and landlord IC photocopy)

It is super tedious to obtain a bank account right now in china for foreigner. Luckily I managed to keep my china bank account when I was an exchange student 6 years ago.

You can always to check with your company if you are coming to china for relocation. Well for tourist, it is impossible to apply a bank account in china.

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