Before you pack your bags to embark on your digital nomad journey, you first have to think about the logistics. How will your clients pay you? And can you access your funds abroad? What about the fees? Luckily, we’ve got your back. In this guide, we’ll cover our list of the best bank accounts for U.S. citizens living and working overseas.
Other banking guides for expats, digital nomads and those traveling internationally:
- Best Banking & Money Transfer Services Internationally
- Best Overseas Bank Options With Branches Worldwide
What Digital Nomads Want In A Bank Account
Most people don’t venture much outside of their home country, and so most banks design accounts to cater to those that travel infrequently. Digital nomads and other U.S. citizens living abroad, however, will be spending money in different currencies and earning an income from possibly many countries all over the world.
Digital nomads require a unique banking solution because traditional ones just aren’t cutting it. Here’s what we look for in bank accounts for digital nomads:
- They don’t charge outrageous fees.
- They allow easy access to our money.
- Their customer support team is readily available.
Keep these points in mind when you’re searching for the perfect bank account for your digital nomad needs.
**BEST BANK ACCOUNTS FOR U.S. CITIZENS LIVING ABROAD**
We’ve gone through all our reviews on bank accounts and listed our favorite ones for Americans living overseas below:
HSBC Premier Checking & HSBC Advance Checking
A well-known, international financial institution, HSBC has a solid reputation and boasts physical branches and ATMs in over 60+ countries worldwide. Besides its presence on a global scale, both the HSBC Premier Checking account and HSBC Advance Checking account offer useful international perks:
HSBC PREMIER CHECKING:
- $0 out-of-network ATM fee
- 0% foreign transaction fee
- Free global transfers
- Premier customer support 24/7
- Support at physical branches
HSBC ADVANCE CHECKING:
- Surcharge-free HSBC ATMs
- 4 non-HSBC ATM rebates per month
- Free global transfers
- 24/7 customer support via live chat
- Support at physical branches
HSBC is known for having lower than average fees compared to other banks, as well as great customer service. They’ll even let you open an account online before you arrive in the country of your choice.
We recommend the HSBC Premier Checking and HSBC Advance Checking accounts particularly for digital nomads who move frequently from big city to big city and require a stable banking solution.
HSBC Bonus: $500 Premier Checking Account Offer
- What you’ll get: $500 bonus
- Where it’s available: Offer only available online, nationwide.
- How to earn it:
- Get a $500 Welcome Deposit for eligible new customers who open an HSBC Premier checking account with qualifying activities.
- Member FDIC.
- Receive a $500 Welcome Deposit when you open your account by February 15, 2023 and complete qualifying activities
- Free International account opening and portable credit history
- No fees for Global Transfers between eligible HSBC accounts worldwide
- Convert, hold and send money abroad with no transfer fees with our Global Money account
- No foreign transaction fees using your Premier debit or credit card
- No U.S. HSBC ATM fees worldwide
- When it expires: 2/15/2023
Deposit products are offered in the U.S. by HSBC Bank USA, N.A. Member FDIC. The information, including rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Please refer to issuer website and application for the most current information.
Charles Schwab High Yield Investor Checking
Charles Schwab is an investment bank based out of the United States. If you’re American and you open an investment account with them, you can also open a High Yield Investor Checking account for free. You don’t need to actively invest in the brokerage account to use the checking account (details here). And this checking account isn’t your average checking account. Digital nomads will enjoy the account’s:
- No foreign transaction fees
- Fully refundable fees on all foreign ATM withdrawals
- 24/7 online customer support chat
You need to be in the United States while opening the account, even if you are applying online.
Charles Schwab High Yield Investor Checking Account Up To $1000 Bonus
You can earn up to a $500 bonus when you open a new High Yield Investor Checking Account and link it to a new brokerage account. I’ve personally opened a brokerage account to be able to open the Checking account and it wasn’t an issue at all. I’ve never had to have any activity with my Schwab brokerage account. You won’t be able to apply for just the Checking account alone for the bonus, but you can choose from the many other account types for the bonus.
- $500 bonus has no listed expiration date
- A new Brokerage account or a new High Yield Investor Checking account linked to a Brokerage account will qualify for the bonus.
- Available online, nationwide
- Account needs to be open for at least 1 year to avoid an early account termination fee
*This is my personal referral link (I do not receive any incentive when you use my link). My unique referral code is REFER4U498PXV. Use the link above to open an account. After you choose an account type you’ll get to a screen where you can enter the Offer/Referral Code.
*If you have a Schwab account open, you can find your referral link after logging in.
Based in Berlin, N26 is a mobile banking solution that offers free accounts to United States residents. More than just an account, N26 makes spending, saving and managing money a breeze. It also features the following international benefits:
- Mastercard debit card so you can pay cashless wherever Mastercard is accepted.
- Unlimited free ATM withdrawals at over 55,000 Allpoint locations within the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, Australia, Mexico and the UK.
- Integrated with Wise for easy foreign currency transfers.
- No foreign transaction fees.
- Real-time customer support via the in-app chat
On the downside, N26 is a virtual bank, which means they don’t have any physical branches for face-to-face customer service.
N26 $5 Welcome Bonus
Get a free $5 cash bonus deposited directly into your N26 account when you:
- Apply using a referral link,
- Enter the referral code in the Promo Code section of the application,
- Download the N26 app,
- Fund your new N26 account from another bank (no minimum funding),
- Activate your new N26 debit card, and
- Use your N26 debit card to make to make a qualifying purchase of at least $10.
This offer is not available if you already have an N26 account, or had one in the past 12 months.
We don’t currently have a personal referral link to provide. Here are some you can try:
Revolut is another popular mobile banking institution from Europe with worldwide usability, savings benefits and budgeting features, all offered with no hidden fees. U.S. residents living overseas love that their Revolut account:
- Holds, exchanges, sends and receives 28+ currencies.
- Supports over 150 currencies at the interbank exchange rate.
- Offers free ATM withdrawals up to a certain monthly amount (depending on plan).
- Provides free foreign spending and exchanges up to a certain monthly amount (depending on plan).
- Sends and requests money easily.
- Has 24/7 customer support via live chat.
Like N26, Revolut is a virtual bank, so no face-to-face customer service is provided. On top of that, you’ll need to pay for a Premium or Metal plan to access all features.
Revolut 3 Months Revolut Premium Subscription Trial
- Promotion details: get a 3 month Revolut Premium subscription trial
- Regions Concerned: all regions except for Australia and Singapore where the offer is a cash award of $15AUD for AU, and $15SGD for SG.
- Who is Eligible: new Revolut customers are eligible.
- How long is this offer running: there is no specified end date for now.
- About the offer: Upgrade to a global lifestyle – Transform your finances when you level up to Premium with Revolut’s free trial. Get features to help you save, spend and invest smarter than ever.
Here’s our referral link if you’d like to use it for the offer (thanks in advance!)
Bonus Tool: Wise
As a digital nomad, you should consider using Wise (formerly Transferwise) to transfer money internationally. It’s quickly becoming the alternative to PayPal, thanks to its low and transparent fees at true mid-market exchange rates. Currently, you can send money to 70+ countries and receive money from 40+ countries, with over 1,000 country combinations across 45+ currencies. Compare it with other top money transfer services.
Wise Promotion: Free International Transfer Offer
Use our referral link below (thanks ahead of time!) to get a free international transfer of up to £500.
Once you have an account open you can start making referral bonus money as well.