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Singapore - Bank Accounts

Singapore Bank Accounts

Most people open a savings account and a cheque account. Telephone and internet banking are available.

All banks issue ATM cards which can also be used as debit cards. The Debit card system in Singapore is called NETS (Network for Electronic Transfers) and is used for EFTPOS transactions which are widely accepted at retail stores and at some restaurants.

Not all of the international banks are linked to the NETS system. There is a daily withdrawal limit for NETS (around S$3,000) which is independent of the ATM withdrawal limit.

Cashcards are multi-purpose stored value cards which are needed for payment in the following situations:

  • ERP (Electronic Road Pricing)- Cashcards are inserted into the In-Vehicle Unit of cars (see Transport-Driving Tips)
  • Parking – an increasing number of carparks are using this system of payment.
  • Library – to pay the library joining fee and fines

You can purchase a Cashcard from local banks (without being an account holder) and from some petrol (gas) stations and 7-Eleven stores. You can top-up the Cashcard through local bank ATMs and some petrol stations.

Opening a Bank Account
Each bank has slightly different requirements but all will require you to have a passport for identification and a letter of introduction from your Singapore employer or a reference from an overseas bank. Some banks will require a minimum opening deposit of S$5,000.

Closing a Bank Account
Return cards and cheque books before leaving Singapore. Telegraphic transfer of funds from Singapore to overseas banks can be done at any time. You can close an account after you have moved from Singapore by sending the bank a signed telegraphic transfer form (take some with you) and a letter explaining that you wish the account to be closed.

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