How to Open a Portuguese Bank Account for Non-Residents

Finally an article about Portugal. It’s one of my absolute favorite countries. Which is why I usually spend a month or two there every year. No matter the reason, or your residency, this article will tell you everything you need to know about opening your first (absolutely free) Portuguese bank account.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Hi, nice article!

‘The account is “domiciled” in Germany’ > what exactly do you mean? do you mean n26 account doesn’t depend where are you actually resident, so domicile you in your residential area? I mean if someone open account from any EU country residency address(that is acceptable to send your debit card there), they don’t register you as domicile of your actual residency address? is this make sense what I mean?

What else than passport do then accept as ID? Travel document(with three month visa free entry to Portugal) or driving license of EEA country can get accepted?

‘Proof of income should ideally state your profession’ can be a letter from company CEO? What if you are the CEO?



Is NIF of Portuguese mean the National Insurance number ~ Tax Identification, Social Security number of Portugal?
Can I get any country of EEA’s NIF number( National Insurance number ~ Tax Identification, Social Security number) like this?

In case we get that NIF number, and everything done ok and I opened a bank account, if money come to that account, as I’m a Portugal resident in from of banks, then they send my info for tax purpose to local tax office, if I don’t pay income tax from the money that come to my Portuguese account and in case my account is automatically or randomly reported to Portuguese local tax office, can the local tax office send me a bill/fine for not paying tax to my resident address? And if I don’t reply, they can file for court and they have my passport and they inform the border p0lic3 and they catch me next time I enter the Portugal to question me over why I don’t pay this income tax?

Can this happen for Portugal or any other country in EEA that I opened an account in this way?


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Can I open account in GBP (Sterling) and deposit in cash in Sterling to account in branch?

Could you list of all accounts in that banks that have SEPA and I can open account in GBP (sterling)?

I need to open a bank account in Sterling at the moment.

May please help me? :slight_smile:


The domicile of the account is separate from your personal domicile. It’s where the bank account is “located”. N26 operates with a German license, hence your account is domiciled there. That means that your IBAN starts with DE. This has nothing to do with your address or residency on file with the bank.


I would guess that they support national ID cards from EU countries, but I’m not sure. A driving license is not a valid ID outside the country of issue.

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Usually you can get a tax ID number if you move to a country or will be liable to pay some tax there. I’m not aware of other countries in the EEA where it’s as easy as in Portugal, but there might be some.

I can’t with any certainty say how banks and Portuguese government will report your accounts. You should assume that both the Portuguese authorities and your country of citizenship will be informed through the CRS process.

That’s not currently possible with Activo.

So if I want to open PayPal for your example of bank, e.g. n26, while my residency address is in country X, so I should apply for PayPal in country X of my domicile to verify it with n26 or I should open German PayPal account as only German PayPal account can be verified by n26 account with bank transfer? Do you catch what I wanted to say? Or shall I explain more detailed?

I have seen in the website of some banks that, they accepting photocard driving license from different countries, as proof of ID, but sometimes they ask for certified copy to posted to their address. What do you think about this?

How to make a bank account profile that country of my citizenship will not informed by CRS/AEOI?

Sorry, I couldn’t get what exactly you mean by ‘That’s not currently possible with Activo.’ ? What is not possible anymore?

Hi great article. To open an account for non-residents, you mentioned need proof of Portuguese adddress?? As NON- resident how? What about tax do one pay tax there, and if still living in another EU country in your country of Residence as well or one or the other. We are looking into buying a house in Portugal and like to put the money in an account there until we have decided on house and location.
On another point, any good and trusted Property realtor/agency? Is it best to use one in Portugal or an overseas (EU) agency?
Thank you And a very Happy 2018!


Not true. While it's not usual, you can absolutely open a GBP account with ActivoBank, you just may have to pay some manteinance fees you would not have to pay for a euro account.

I would also like to add that you can now open an account with ActivoBank 100% online through a video call like N26 does.

Also Bancoctt definitely has online banking, it's actually one of their biggest selling points. They claim in their advertising that it's very good.


Hi Gail, thanks for your reply. Almost forgotten i’ve asked something here. I might take you up on your offer. Just need a few weeks to decide if we are deffinately pp there or not. And it would most likely be in the Algarve region.

Marita, you don't need a Portuguese address to open a Portuguese bank account. You do need proof of address of your foreign address, though, like a bank statement or ID card with your address on it.

If you live less than 183 days per year in Portugal, you do not pay tax in Portugal.

Your realtor/agency depends on where you choose to live, as there is no central database for all properties in Portugal. Instead, they are listed by the agency who is commissioned by the seller. What you need to do is to choose the area first, then search for the properties available in that area in the inventory held by different agencies or in a property website like

It's a lot more work to do it this way, but it's worth using the property websites as there are also properties listed there by the owners who prefer not to deal with agents.

I'm a Canadian living in Porto since 2013. Message me if you want to know more.


What if you don’t have payslips? If you don’t have a job yet but are coming to Portugal - and want to open a bank account - because you have been offered a job there?
Thank you for your answers!

I’m pretty sure you’ll be fine, just explain your situation to the AB staff. If you have payslips from your previous country, or even a university diploma or something like that, it doesn’t hurt to bring along a copy. But I’m pretty sure you’ll be fine even without it.

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I am a non-dom UK resident, and am only taxed on my overseas income brought/spent in the UK.
I have an offshore bank account but cannot get a credit card there as I am not resident.
If I take a UK credit card I have to pay tax on the money used to pay the bill.
Is it possible to get a Portuguese credit card as a non-resident?