Am a German citizen and I would like to open a checking account in USA, no matter which bank, important is the fact that I can have a Zelle service and that I actually can handle to manage the account from abroad.

I know, some bank institutions/branch allow to open accounts, independently of the fact of being foreign citizen or not, and independently of having a resident permit in USA or not.

  • Any advice, experiences about doing this?
  • What do I need beside passport and money?
  • What bank is the better to fits my criteria?
  • 1
    TransferWise offers US bank accounts but they don't have any branches and aren't a US bank. Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 11:55
  • are those using Zelle?, because it sound like some PayPal alike service.... Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 12:01
  • @ΦXocę웃Пepeúpaツ so your question is Zelle-specific? Then you should update the title. Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 12:55
  • 2
    @MikaelDúiBolinder Transferwise offers US dollar accounts with a bank number people can use to wire money, but they are not bank accounts. The difference becomes important in case of deposit guarantees and other rights that come with bank account.s
    – gerrit
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:31
  • 2
    With literally no "footprint" whatsoever in the US (SSN, citizenship, residential address) it may be very challenging or impossible to open a typical personal bank account at a mainstream bank, given the identity verification requirements implied with KYC. Some banks (i.e. Bank of America for example) will open accounts for non-citizens (you can show your passport to establish ID instead of an SSN), but they require a residential address in the US, and they may ask you to prove the validity of the address actually being yours (i.e. show a utility bill with your name and that address on it).
    – dwizum
    Commented Jan 23, 2020 at 14:34

1 Answer 1


You will need to understand the requirements, which is posted online by most US banks. If you bank with DeutcheBank, maybe there is an advantage to opening another US account with DeutcheBank.

Helpful Items:

  • Two forms of valid photo ID: Your passport is a must + secondary form of ID like your student ID, driver’s license… etc.
  • Immigration documents: All legal documents, including your work or visit visa

  • EIN (Employer Identification Number): This is a number assigned to you (foreign business) by the IRS, you need it to open a business account in the US

  • US address: Most, if not all, banks require a physical US address to open a bank account
  • Initial Deposit
  • Passport

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