Jeff Steiner's Americans in France.
Resource for people that would like to live or travel in France.



Daily Life



Moving Planner


Q & A

Reading List

Travel Planner


Expat Store

Driver's License



Disposal Units


Learn French

Tax Services


ForumRead Message

Subject: banking
Date: Monday, November 13, 2006
Name: Leah
Message: My husband (French) and I (American) are moving to France in January 2007, for at least 2 years (but probably permanently). We have been living in the states for 10 years, so all of our savings/money is in a U.S. Bank.

Because the exchange rate (Euro-US Dollar) is so bad, we don't want to take our money out all at once (or at all). I was wondering if there is a bank that is international that one can use to avoid transfer fees when accessing money? I know that we will have to deal with the unfavorable exchange rate, but at least it would be nice not to have to fork over money to the bank just for accessing our money while we are living in France.

Any banking advice would be greatly appreciated!

Replies Posted 6.

Name Samantha
Message Doug, I'm not sure if non-resident accounts are possible, as most banks will ask to see your carte de séjour and proof of an address in France before they let you open an account. You might want to try contacting the English speaking branch of Credit Agricole, called Britline - I think they might have a special account set up for foreigners...

Name Doug
Message Well, I have a question along the same line. I may be making a move to Paris in the late spring, but I am not sure if it will be for good. I want to open a non-resident account because even if I do not make the move, I will still be there a few times a year and think it would help if I just had an account there. I ideas which banks to look at?


Name Mike
Message HSBC is another bank that provides both services in English and in French. They actually have web based banking and branches over a lot of the US.


Name Samantha
Message This is an interesting topic, I've been recently wondering the same thing. I know some people who've set up an American paypall account and then a French one, and thus avoid paying bank transfer fees. Whether or not the exchange rate they give you is the best one is another question. Other people use some of the well-known money exchange services such as or

Name Lori
Message You may try Citibank. They have a special department called Personal Banking for Overseas Employees (PBOE). The phone number in the U.S. is

Citibank PBOE 3800 Citibank Center A1-03 Tampa, Fla. 33610 813-604-3290

There is a fee for having the account, but depending upon your employer, it may be covered by them (our's is). Not sure what the fee is, but we are allowed up to 4 International Wires free of charge and they will wire your money out in whatever currency you wish, normally avoiding any receiving bank fees.

Other banks may have similar options. It would probably be worth it to call a few near you.

Name Emily
Message Hi - I know that Bank of America is partners with BNP Paribas. You can use your BofA card at their ATMs and not have to pay a fee. I suggest you look into US banks that have partners with French banks to see what types of deals are out there so you can avoid as many fees as possible. Good luck!

Follow @jeffsteiner

Sign-up for the FREE Americans in France newsletter.
Just type in your e-mail address and click 'Subscribe'.





Search Site

Travel Store


Auto Rentals


Cell Phones


Phone Card


SIM Card



Terms &

This site
uses Cookies!

Terms of Service


Follow me
on Twitter.

Facebook Page

RSS Feed