Open a Swedish bank account
It may take some time to open a bank account in Sweden once you have arrived. Make sure that you have enough money to cover your expenses for the first few months of your stay. International debit and credit cards are widely accepted in Sweden.
Banks are required to check the identity of their customers and some banks have more strict criteria than others. We strongly advise that you bring a VISA/Mastercard with sufficient funds in your existing bank account.
Once you have successfully opened a bank account in Sweden, you should be able to transfer money from the bank in your home country to your new bank account in Sweden.
The services and offers available at banks in Sweden can also depend on whether you have a Swedish personal identity number or not.
Banks in Sweden are generally open between 10:00 and 15:00, but some branch offices have more generous opening hours, especially on Thursdays. Please be aware that many banks in Sweden no longer handle cash.
If you are admitted to a one-year Master's programme you will be studying at Uppsala University for less than 12 months. This means that you are not eligible for a Swedish personal identity number and therefore may face difficulties in opening a Swedish bank account. Therefore, you must ensure that your bank account from your bank at home is set up for international transfers. If you are able to open a bank account in Sweden, it will likely have a connected Maestro card with no access to internet banking.
If you are admitted to a two-year Master's programme or a three-year Bachelor's programme you should be eligible to apply for a Swedish personal identity number. Having a personal identity number will make it easier to open a bank account in Sweden. However, it can take a few weeks to receive your personal identity number, and you should apply for it before you apply to open a Swedish bank account.
We would recommend that you take the following documents to the bank when applying to open an account:
- Valid passport
- Your residence permit (if applicable)
- Your notification of selection results (admissions results)
- A certificate of registration from Uppsala University (can be obtained after your arrival)
- Details of your address in Sweden
- Documentation of your personal identity number or co-ordination number
- A Swedish ID card (may be required by some banks): read more below
- A fact sheet with information about the rights to open a bank account in Sweden. The fact sheet can be downloaded in 22 languages from the Swedish Banker´s Association website
You can find more information about opening a bank account in Sweden on the Swedish Bankers' Association website.
Some banks have more strict criteria for students wishing to open an account in Sweden. For example, some banks require that students with a personal identity number show a Swedish ID card along with their other documents.
It is possible to apply for a Swedish ID card from the Swedish Tax Agency after receiving the personal identity number. Applying for the ID card costs 400 SEK.
An Electronic ID (BankID) is like a digital ID. You can use a BankID to identify yourself to both companies and authorities, log in to e-services and sign contracts. Once you have opened a bank account in Sweden, you can apply for a BankID. You will most likely have to visit your bank in person.
Swish is an online payment service for payments between private users. Through the Swish app, you link your telephone number and can directly transfer money from your account to private individuals. You can register with Swish by downloading the app and signing with your BankID.
Some countries, such as Russia or Iraq, have international sanctions imposed on them. Please be aware that if you come from one of these countries, it may be close to impossible to open a Swedish bank account due to Swedish legislation.