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Opening a personal bank account in the UAE

Открытие личного банковского счета в ОАЭ

The main activity of our company Relocate UAE is to support businesses and people who want to move and successfully adapt to the UAE. Among the many issues that we have already solved with our clients, the opening of a personal bank account is particularly popular. Every year this topic becomes only more relevant, as many visitors have difficulties. To understand the whole process, let’s look at its features – from the collection of documents to the opening procedure itself.

Why can there be problems?

Most visitors to the Emirates face difficulties in the process of opening an account. Most often, this situation develops due to strict requirements for AML (antimonetization) and KYC (know your customer) procedures. They were introduced in order to combat money laundering and terrorism.

Documents and requirements


There is a standard list of documents for opening an account:

  1. The original passport – without it, the account will not be opened.
  2. Emirates-ID – an identity card from the Government of the Emirates.
  3. Resident visa – gives the right to reside in the country, and also confirms the residence of the UAE.
  4. Local phone number. There are 4 main mobile operators operating in the country, the most popular of which are Du and Etisalat. Obtaining a SIM card is available in any of their branches. It is important to check that the number is active and can be used in roaming.
  5. Statement of turnover from a personal account – reflects financial transactions for the last six months. A Russian bank or a foreign one does not matter.
  6. Confirmation of the address in the Emirates – acts as proof of residence.
  7. Salary Certificate (for employees) – a certificate that confirms the salary. If you have a different type of visa, you need any similar document that confirms your solvency.

This is not an exhaustive list. Each bank has its own conditions. For example, he may request a minimum contribution to be deposited to the account or registration of additional products of the bank – insurance / credit card.

Therefore, if you decide to apply to a financial institution, make sure that you have prepared all the necessary papers.

Account opening process and popular banks


To issue an invoice:

  1. Choose a bank that accepts foreigners.
  2. Provide a package of documents.
  3. Wait for a response from the bank. The organization’s specialists will first check the documents, accept the application, and then contact you.
  4. Get a bank card – this can be done on the spot or ordered to your address.

The whole process usually takes from a few days to a couple of weeks.

Popular banking organizations for foreign citizens:

  1. Emirates NBD.
  2. FAB.
  3. RAK.
  4. Mashreq.

The conditions and requirements of banks are different, so check out all the details on their official websites in advance or contact their support service.



Despite the complexity of the process, opening an account in the United Arab Emirates is quite an achievable task. You will need a package of documents and a good attitude.

If you have any specific questions, difficulties or unwillingness to waste your time on this procedure, you can contact our company. We have sufficient experience in the UAE jurisdiction to help get the necessary information, as well as accompany the entire account opening process.

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Vladimir Sviridov
Vladimir Sviridov
General Manager RLC Consulting
With a Postgraduate Masters in Finance from The, Moscow State University, Russia. Vladimir started his professional career as an auditor of the financial sector of EY. After that, he worked for several years in senior positions in corporate banking. In 2018-2021, he managed the finances of a large agricultural holding, and is currently responsible for strategic planning, corporate partnership and financial management in the role of General Manager of RLC Consulting GROUP in the UAE.

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What service are you interested in?
Company setup
Obtaining a residence permit
Buying real estate
Opening a bank account
Auditor or accountant services
Trademark registration
Tax support
Notarial Power of Attorney (PoA)
Launching a business

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