It is advisable to set up a bank account soon after your arrival. In Germany many bills are paid by standing order or bank transfer and it is common practice to set up a standing order to pay the rent. Your salary will be transferred to a German bank account at the beginning of each month.
There are several large banks in Germany and it is recommended to compare their regulations and fees because they can differ quite a lot. Certain banks have good conditions regarding the costs for a bank account while others offer higher interests in your savings.
With the opening of a bank account you will receive a debit card (EC-Karte). With this card you can draw cash from a cashpoint (ATM) and pay in many shops and supermarkets. In cafés or smaller shops it is customary to pay with cash.
If you want to transfer money from your home country to Germany or from Germany into your home country high costs can result. Therefore it is recommended that you check with the bank in your home country before coming to Germany if they have a partner bank in Germany.
Tip: You can conduct most bank affairs online yourself. Therefore when opening a bank account you will receive an online access to your bank account as well. This enables you, for example, to set up a bank transfer from your computer at home.
Opening a bank account
The largest banks in Germany are Deutsche Bank, Commerzbank and Postbank. Furthermore you will find “Sparkassen” and “Volks- und Raiffeisenbanken” in nearly every city. Apart from those there are several smaller institutions or banks that are strictly available online without any walk-in branches. Especially those offer accounts with none or very low fees.
Necessary documents to open a bank account:
- Confirmation from the residents' registration office
- some institutions may request a documentation of your residence permit
You can find branches of many institutions at the “Luisenplatz” – the city centre of Darmstadt – or nearby. There you can open the bank account as well. Modalities to open a bank account at an online bank are defined on the website of each institution.
Please contact the Welcome Centre at an early stage so that we can support you at your start at the TU Darmstadt. Please fill in the contact form.
This website is for information purposes only and the statements are not legally binding. Please contact the authorities to clarify which regulations apply in your case.