Comparison of banks in Germany

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Comparison of Banks in Germany

Choosing the right bank according to your interests might a bit hectic as an expat in Germany. Germany has many banks offering a variety of services, and most are free of charge, while for others there is a minimum amount of money you need to deposit each month. Here we would be discussing some of the best banks you can consider opting for. 

Comdirect

Comdirect is another online bank that allows you to create an account without an Anmeldung. It offers more services for a slightly higher fee than N26. If you are younger than 28 or receive at least 700 euros a month, you can now open one of the best German bank accounts for free.  

You will also not be charged a monthly fee if you use Apple Pay or Google Pay at least three times per month or if you use comdirect broker account at least once per month (including savings accounts). In the event you require a broker account, then it might be the better choice. 

Despite the lack of Comdirect locations throughout Germany, you don’t have to worry since the Visa credit card allows you to withdraw cash from any machine across Germany and abroad without any additional fees.  

Advantages:  

  • No monthly fees 
  • Free withdrawals at ATM 
  • Open your account easily from your smartphone via VideoChat 
  • Debit  cards are free 

Disadvantages: 

  • Only online services available  
  • In the case of payments in foreign currencies, 1.75% is charged as a foreign transaction fee 
  • Services only available  in German 
  • Some passports cannot be used with PostIdent. Most Indian passports cannot be used. 

N26

N26 is for those of you who prefer getting things done at your convenience. This is an online bank which brings opening a bank account easier by bringing banking to your smartphone or desktop. It is famous among expats and do not require a Anmeldung as well. To sign up for a free account, you will need an ID/passport, your address, and your webcam for verification. There is no monthly fee and ATM withdrawals are free as well.  

you can open an account without Anmeldung, if your country is in this list.

Advantages:  

  • Provides a banking app and support in English, German, Spanish, French & Italian 
  • You can withdraw up to five free withdrawals per month from any ATM within the Eurozone 
  • No monthly fees 
  • Free virtual Mastercard debit card 
  • Open your account easily from your smartphone via VideoChat 

Disdvantages:

  • Cash withdrawals outside of the Eurozone cost 1.7% 
  • No branches available for immediate contact 
  • Fewer services than traditional banks 

Commerzbank Girokonto

Commerzbank 

Commerzbank is a classic bank. There are branches everywhere. It offers good services, but its fees are high. They offer English-language online banking. Other services are in German. Most types of passport are accepted. The Girokonto Basic from Commerzbank is free if you receive at least 700 EUR of incoming payments per month, otherwise it is 9.90 EUR per month. 

You also get a debit card that allows you to use CashGroup ATMs(Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank, HypoVereinsbank & Postbank). If you withdraw cash from an ATM outside of the CashGroup network or from an ATM outside of Germany, there is a fee. Commerzbank’s bank account package also includes a virtual debit card. They have branches with English speaking staff which is a big plus.The online banking portal is available in English.It is also supported by Apple Pay and Google Pay. 

Advantages: 

  • Online banking portal in English & German 
  •  Free of charge (if you earn 700 EUR/month) 
  • Agencies with personalized advice (often in English) 
  • Easily open your account of your smartphone via VideochatFree 
  • Debit card (Girocard) and virtual debit card  
  •  Free Euro transfers via online banking within EU/ EFTA (SEPA) 

Disdvantages:  

  • Free cash withdrawals only at CashGroup ATMs 

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👉 Documents required for opening a bank account

  • Application form that is completely filled out 
  • Your passport and you must have a valid German residence permit 
  • Proof of Registration and/or mailing address 
  • If you're opening a student account, you'll need proof proving you're a student 
  • Proof of income or employment is required 
  • Make a first deposit (the minimum depends on the bank of your choice) 
  • SCHUFA's credit score (some, not all, banks require it)

Best banks for expats 

Since expats are new to the place and might not be well versed with direct contacts. Considering online banks would be a quick and feasible option with less paperwork as well. A digital bank, based on this notion, is perhaps the best option for expats who are new to Germany. 

This is due to the fact that digital banks are app-based and often have no charges. Certain digital banks, such as N26, it allow you to open an account with simply your passport before you arrive in Germany, no registration required! They frequently provide multilingual help, both within the app and for customer care. 

PROCESS TO VERIFY THE IDENTITY

The process of opening an online bank account in Germany also requires the verification of your identity. You might need to use  

  • Webcam - NOTE: Indian Passports are not accepted for Videoidentification
  • Email verifying code OR 
  • using Postident, which is an approved substitute for identifying your identity. You must submit your passport and a verification form at the post office if you want PostIdent to verify your identity. Download the form from the bank's website. After the documents are signed and returned, PostIdent verifies your identity.

Factor to consider to choose the right one for you 

Banking Services: You should research and ask questions about the services offered by the bank before opening an account with that bank. Despite the fact that many banks in Germany offer a wide range of services, it is important to gather the full set of details in advance. 

Maintenance and Withdrawal Fees: When choosing a financial provider, fees are an important factor to consider. Keep an eye out for maintenance and withdrawal fees since some ATMs charge up to five euros. 

Customer Support: When it comes to banking, customer support is of utmost importance. Especially in terms of language. You need to register with a bank with English-speaking customer service if you are unable to speak German. 

Branches and ATMs: There are many branches and ATMs in Germany. The convenience of being able to access your money at any time and anywhere is invaluable. 

Online Services: Banking services online are essential and save time. If you prefer online services then you might carefully look into this factor. 

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We want to be transparent with you. This article contains affiliate links, which means that when you click on them, we may receive a small bonus. Rest assured, this will not affect the price for you. Instead, it enables our dedicated Vanakkam Germany Team to continue delivering valuable content and improving our services. Your support is greatly appreciated as we strive to serve you better.

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