UK business account for non residents - can foreigners open one?

Yes, a non-resident can open a business bank account in the UK. Opening a local bank account is a logical step when setting up a business in a new country. However, understanding the options available can be overwhelming.

In this guide, we’ll be exploring the following:

  • Why non-residents should open a UK business account.

  • How to open a UK business account as a non-resident.

  • What banking options are available to non-residents.

  • Why 3S Money is the best business account solution for non-residents

How can a non-resident open a UK business account?

As a non-resident, opening a UK business account can be challenging but not impossible. Most UK banks require in-person visits or a UK presence, but some international banks & electronic money institutions (EMIs) offer online solutions for non-residents.

The eligibility criteria for a business account will vary between individual providers. With so many choices, it can be difficult for non-residents to make the right decision.

At 3S Money, we specialise in helping non-residents open online multicurrency business accounts in the UK. We're not a challenger bank; we're a bank challenger that works with business owners in 190+ countries & territories worldwide.

Here are three reasons why 3S Money is the best UK business account provider for non-residents:

1. No UK residency requirements.

2. 100% online application.

3. A dedicated support team who speaks your language.

What are the benefits of opening a UK business account?

Having a dedicated UK business account is a powerful tool for growth. It helps simplify expenses, streamline money management, and make it easier for businesses to pay local overheads, salaries, and suppliers.

Here are six ways that opening a UK business account can help your business:

1. Pay & get paid faster: Streamline salary payments and expense management for UK-based employees, contractors, and suppliers.

2. Market credibility: Build trust with business partners using recognisable, locally accepted banking details.

3. Competitive currency exchange: Reduce fees and fluctuations by conducting transactions in local currency.

4. Financial separation and transparency: segregate personal and business finances, aiding in accurate accounting and tax filing.

5. Security and fund protection: Benefit from enhanced business-to-business rights, protection against fraud, and safeguarding deposited funds.

6. Compliance and legal requirements: Local banking services make it easier for businesses to adhere to local laws and financial regulations.

What business banking options are available for non-residents?

UK business accounts are available through high-street banks, online banks, and electronic money institutions. Taking the time to invest in a suitable account partner is worth doing. A good account provider will prioritise security, speed, and service. Fintech providers and online banks have created a fairer, more transparent payment landscape.

3S Money International Business Account

Our International Business Accounts are built for non-resident owners wanting to scale their UK operations. We combine private commercial banking with Fintech solutions to provide businesses worldwide with smart, flexible, and cost-effective local & international payment solutions.

What do we offer?:

  • Local UK & EU IBANs in your company name.

  • A dedicated Client Manager for your account.

  • Send and receive high-value payments in 190+ countries.

  • Competitive foreign exchange rates in 65+ currencies.

  • Remote account management for up to 10 users.

Want to know if 3S Money is right for you? Get in touch with our team today to discuss our account options and services.

Are non-residents legally required to open a UK business account?

There’s no legal requirement for non-residents to open a business account in the UK.

Owners of businesses registered in the UK or those that operate as sole traders are also exempt. However, all limited companies must hold a recognised business account.

Are UK business accounts safe for non-residents? 

The UK has high business standards and is a world leader in financial services. Non-resident business account holders have the same legal and financial protection as residents.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulates the UK’s financial services industry. Its role is to protect consumers and keep the industry stable. It also motivates businesses to supply the best possible service for their customers. 

What are the requirements for non-residents to open a UK business account?

The eligibility criteria for a business account will vary between individual providers. With so many choices, it can be difficult for non-residents to make the right decision.

Before applying, all businesses should ensure they have the following in place: 

  • Legal proof of ownership.

  • A registered UK business address.

  • Proof of business registration with Companies House.

  • Up-to-date financial records.

  • Evidence of trading or a robust business plan.

Businesses may also have to present alternative forms of documentation. This can include proof of a live website, social media, and ecommerce activity. Proof of registration with a recognised body may also be required.

Open a 3S Money International Business Account

3S Money is a bank challenger, not a challenger bank.

Built for and by non-resident entrepreneurs, our International Business Account is the perfect solution for any business owner looking to scale in the UK.

Here’s a taste of what we offer:

Local UK & EU IBANs and US account details

With 3S Money, businesses enjoy the benefits of a local bank account without the hassle. This means faster payments, reduced fees, and instant access to domestic markets.

Human client support

Each 3S Money account comes with a dedicated Client Manager. This means no more call queues, chatbots or automated replies. They provide tailored payment support and local expertise across five international offices.

Send and receive high-value payments in 190+ countries

Wherever in the world a business operates, 3S Money makes payments possible. With the widest global coverage of any provider, we bring global markets to our clients.

Competitive foreign exchange rates

We can send, receive, and exchange payments in 65+ currencies. This means that businesses can seamlessly accept customer and supplier payments in local currencies.

Opening a UK business account as a non-resident offers significant advantages despite its initial complexity. If you’re a business owner seeking a streamlined banking experience in the UK, 3S Money's tailored service and personalised approach make it the perfect bank alternative.

Last updated: 10/01/24

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