Can a foreigner open a bank account in Georgia?

avatar_Can a foreigner open a bank account in Georgia?

Which bank to choose

First, you need to decide in which bank to open an account. Although there are dozens of banks in Georgia, two are larger than the others in terms of capitalization and number of branches. BOG and TBC. Both banks are listed on the London Stock Exchange and have very large amounts on deposit. 

To open an account at TBC, you have to go to a branch in person - it is not possible to open an account from abroad. In BOG, it is quite possible to do it remotely (via a POA + your passport). You do not need to travel to Georgia.

If you are physically in Georgia when you open your account, the only document you need to bring is your passport, the bank will need it to make a copy. TBC will request a home address, which is not necessarily a Georgian address. 

In addition, the bank will not require a minimum deposit to open your account. The operating costs of the bank account are very cheap - a few Georgian Lari are enough monthly - and depend on the bank you decide to operate with and the level of service offered by the account. Each bank works with its own rules and regulations, and offers a multitude of services like the major European banks.

Concerning the means of payment. All banks offer debit cards that can be used to withdraw funds at ATMs in Georgia and worldwide. Banks offer a wide range of services on Visa or Mastercard cards. And of course, all offer mobile banking applications as well as Internet banking services, so you can manage your funds anywhere in the world.

  • Opening an account is very easy: about 30 minutes.
  • Your debit card will be ready in 24 to 48 hours and will be sent to the address of your choice, by express mail if you wish.
  • The bank account you will open is a multi-currency account in GEL, USD and EUR. If you transfer funds to your USD or EUR account, the funds will remain in that currency until you wish to convert them. TBC ATMs in Georgia allow you to withdraw funds in USD as well as in GEL.
  • All bank accounts in Georgia use the international IBAN format, which facilitates the transfer of funds to the account without having to manage SWIFT / BIC codes. The funds sent to the account will arrive very quickly, 24 hours are enough.
  • If you have opened a business in Georgia, the principles are exactly the same for opening a corporate bank account. You just need to show your company documents with your passport.

Speaking shortly, opening a bank account in Georgia as a foreigner is an easy process compared to most countries in the world.