Setting up a bank account and getting your finances in order is a top priority when you arrive in the UAE, and happily, the banking process is relatively straightforward in the UAE.
But trying to figure out the best current account for you can be tricky. With each bank account offering different rewards, benefits and requirements, it can be hard to know which will be the best account that will suit you in the long term.
To help you make your way through the field of banking, we’ve put together the top picks for current accounts in the UAE.
Emirates NBD – Standard Current Account
This current account requires a minimum balance of AED 5,000 and you can access your money in dirhams, pounds, dollars and euros, which means, if you travel frequently, this could be a big advantage for you. If you would prefer for your current account not to be opened with dirhams, you can open the account with an approved foreign currency of your preference. And you can apply for an overdraft, once the bank has approved the request.
Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) – Current Account
This account allows you to have a smaller minimum balance of AED 3,000. ADIB’s current account is based on the Islamic principle of Qard Hasan – an Islamic principle where, if you need a loan, then the repayment will be the same as the amount borrowed, this can help if you ever need an instant overdraft. ADIB has made it easy for you to make monthly payments as well by automatically taking money out of your account each month on a specific date for regular payments on bills, transfers or instalments, so you can be worry-free each month.
HSBC – Basic Current Account
There are a few more requirements for this account, however the benefits help it to make our list. To apply for this account, you need a minimum salary of AED 7,500, and you need to ensure you keep a balance of AED 3,000 – if not then unfortunately you will be charged AED 25 every month. With this account, you’re eligible for HSBC’s Visa Cashback Credit Card, which offers up to 10% cashback on all your spends. You can also download a free HSBC Entertainer App with over 8,000 buy-one-get-one-free offers that can redemmed at places like VOX Cinemas.
Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) – 2-in-1 Account
If you’re looking for an account that offers more, then the 2-in-1 Account is for you. This gives you all the benefits of a savings and current account rolled into one. So along with the convenience of a regular current account, you can earn profits on all your deposits. Earning profit from this account is simple, if you can meet the monthly average balance then the profit will be credited to the account on a quarterly basis. To make things even easier you are offered free payment facilities on Salik Recharge, utility bills and Etisalat and du payments. You need to have an opening balance of AED 3,000.
National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) – Personal Current Account
NBAD has several current accounts to choose from, all suited to whatever is best for you. The Personal Current Account is available in dirhams and other major currencies and with the MasterCard Platinum Debit Card you are offered free airport lounge access across the Middle East. NBAD has special discounts at some of UAE’s favourite restaurants and retailers, however you need to make sure you apply for their credit card to take advantage of this feature.