Whether you’re planning to study in the UK or arrived there already, at some point you’ll need a bank account for sure. In the past, it was very difficult to open a bank account but now banks have become a bit more flexible in terms of documents they accept as proof.
If you’d like to open an international student bank account in the UK, you’ll need:

  • Current Passport
  • Proof of address in the UK
  • Valid Visa
  • Student ID or acceptance letter from the university
  • 3 months statements from home bank

The Top UK Banks are:

  • Barclays
  • HSBC
  • Lloyds
  • RBS/NatWest
  • TSB
  • Santander

Most of the reputed banks will not charge you monthly costs for a basic current account which is sufficient for everyday banking needs. If you need additional features like cashback, interest and insurance, household bills, it will cost you monthly fees.

ATM Fees
If you use your bank’s ATM, the service is free. However, some ATM machines from other banks will charge you £1.50 to £3 per transaction. Before using other bank’s ATM machines, you should check if it is going to charge you extra money. But using ATMs outside is never free.
If you’re using a foreign ATM and asks you which currency it should charge you in, always use charge in the local currency. If you don’t, it will cost you a lot than you expected.
When you manage your finances from your home account, you’ll be charged more on conversion fees each time you use a debit card or withdraw cash, so having an account in the UK helps you avoid extra charges and saves your money, and lets you transact money online in less fee.