How to Open a Private Bank Account in the Bahamas

Bahamas private bank accounts are suitable for prospective clients seeking private banking with an initial deposit of up to 1,000,000.

In this article, weโ€™re sharing how to open a private bank account in The Bahamas for foreign non-resident individuals and entities.

This will include the specific client profiles that can benefit from banking in The Bahamas, the benefits they can expect, and which alternative jurisdictions they may want to consider instead of The Bahamas when it comes to private banking.

If you would like access to our free Bahamas banking series, click the link above and unlock our teamโ€™s expert take on Bahamian banks, Bahamas banking requirements, personal and business banking in The Bahamas, and much more.

You can also use the table of contents and jump to the section that matches your private banking needs in The Bahamas.

Table of Contents

  1. Open a Private Bank Account in The Bahamas
  2. Who Can Open Private Bank Accounts in The Bahamas?
    1. How Much Do Bahamas Banks Want You to Deposit?
    2. Who Should Open Private Bank Accounts in The Bahamas?
    3. Benefits of Opening Private Bank Accounts in The Bahamas?
  3. How to Open a Private Non-Resident Bank Account in The Bahamas?
  4. Bahamas Banking System: Private Banking
    1. Alternatives to a Bahamas Private Bank Account
  5. Frequently Asked Bahamas Banking Questions
  6. Ready to Open an Offshore Bank Account?

Open a Private Bank Account in The Bahamas

Bahamas private bank accounts can be opened by foreign non-residents and wealth management entities from around the world. While deposit requirements vary, most Bahamas banks expect up to 1,000,000 as a starting balance.

Importantly, The Bahamas is primarily a banking jurisdiction that caters to individuals with a specific connection to The Bahamas. With this in mind, the top-rated banking companies and the best banks in The Bahamas serve individuals and entities that can demonstrate a local tie.

That said, it is possible to open a wide range of bank accounts here. This includes opening a solo non-resident account or a personal bank account in The Bahamas remotely. Additionally, it’s also worth noting that certain banks open company checking accounts and business bank accounts in The Bahamas for certain non-resident entities as well. That said, this article is exclusively focusing on private banking.

In all instances, different clients may benefit from establishing a private banking relationship with a financial institution in The Bahamas. This is especially true for individuals, institutions, wealth management entities, and individuals seeking investment management, tax advisory, and offshore structuring.

On the other hand, anyone seeking basic banking and investment services with lower deposit amounts may want to consider opening bank accounts in less established private banking hubs.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at who can open private bank accounts in The Bahamas.

Who Can Open Private Bank Accounts in The Bahamas?

Who can open a private bank account in The Bahamas is determined by citizenship, residency, risk, and deposit level. That said, foreign non-residents, foreign residents, and wealth management entities are eligible for Bahamian private banking.

For clarity, wealth management entities include trusts, foundations, and holding companies. When it comes to banking in The Bahamas, these wealth management entities can be structured in The Bahamas or foreign and offshore jurisdictions and can typically access international banking products and Bahamas offshore banking services with a qualifying deposit.

In short, there are several key criteria that will determine whether an individual or entity can open a private bank account in The Bahamas, which includes whether the applicant can pass the basic Bahamian AML and KYC process and whether they can make a qualifying deposit with a Bahamian bank.

How Much Do Bahamas Banks Want You to Deposit?

In most cases, a lineup of banking groups and a list of banks in The Bahamas do expect clients to deposit up to USD 1,000,000 in order to open a private bank account. That said, certain Bahamian banks do allow clients to start with lower deposits, ranging from USD 250,000 to 500,000.

As weโ€™ll explain below, we view these deposit requirements as moderately high when compared to the value, sophistication, service, and products that Bahamian banks offer in comparison to other established private banking hubs where accounts can be opened for less. This is true whether you’re comparing the most sophisticated institutions and the largest banks in The Bahamas or smaller banks.

Who Should Open Private Bank Accounts in The Bahamas?

Due to the account opening protocols, the banking requirements in The Bahamas, and the availability of more similar private banking hubs with lower deposit levels, we suggest that most individuals consider all of the available private banking options before applying to Bahamas banks.

However, private banking in The Bahamas can offer value to certain client profiles. These profiles include individuals, institutions, wealth management entities, and individuals seeking investment management. With this in mind, here is a look at the common benefits that people can expect when opening a private bank account in The Bahamas.

Benefits of Opening Private Bank Accounts in The Bahamas?

  1. Accepting foreign non-residents & offshore companies
  2. Investment opportunities
  3. Available institutional services
  4. Remote account opening is possible
  5. Multi-currency accounts

Not surprisingly, Bahamian citizens and residents will be able to unlock different financial perks and benefits for banking in The Bahamas than non-residents. However, if you fit into the categories mentioned above or you’re specifically seeking one of the above benefits, private banking in The Bahamas may be worth exploring.

How to Open a Private Non-Resident Bank Account in The Bahamas?

To open a private non-resident bank account in The Bahamas, individuals need to complete the following steps:

  1. Select a Bahamian bank that accepts your client profile and matches your desired private banking services
  2. Complete the Bahamian bankโ€™s account opening application, including the standard KYC and AML questionnaires
  3. Obtain necessary document verifications requested by the Bahamian bank
  4. If you are opening a private bank account in The Bahamas remotely, you may need to mail original copies of all documents to The Bahamas
  5. After the account opening process is complete, the Bahamian bank will give you between one and two weeks to make the account opening deposit

Itโ€™s important to note that each Bahamian bank has slightly different deposit requirements. With this in mind, itโ€™s important to explore all of the private banking options in The Bahamas to find banks that you qualify for before applying.

And, as mentioned above, you should also compare The Bahamas’s banking system to other alternative options. This is especially true when opening private bank accounts, which demand a higher level of deposit, commitment, and sophistication.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at the Bahamian banking system, specifically for private banking, and see how it stacks up to global alternatives.

Bahamas Banking System: Private Banking

The Bahamas’s banking system in terms of private banking is well established. This is because The Bahamas is an offshore banking jurisdiction that supports individuals and entities from around the world.

As mentioned, there are similar private banking hubs available elsewhere. And, in many cases, these more established private banking hubs require lower or similar deposits. With this in mind, instead of accessing sophisticated financing and banking services in The Bahamas, you could open accounts in private banking hubs like Andorra, Bermuda, or Singapore, if they better match your needs.

That said, there are certain reasons that may make banking in The Bahamas unavoidable. One of these reasons includes gaining direct access to the local banknotes, the official currency of The Bahamas, the Bahamian dollar. On the other hand, if you need to transfer money internationally, send money to The Bahamas, or send transfers out of The Bahamas, then opening a bank account in the country can obviously make sense.

Here is a look at some of the alternative jurisdictions that you might want to consider instead of opening a private bank account in The Bahamas.

Alternatives to a Bahamas Private Bank Account

  • Andorra
  • Austria
  • Bermuda
  • Cayman Islands
  • Singapore
  • Switzerland
  • Liechtenstein

When comparing jurisdictions, you should look at the specific financial dangers and risks of banking in The Bahamas against the alternatives that you’re considering. Likewise, the account maintenance fees and costs of banking in The Bahamas, including opening accounts should be considered.

If you would like to explore any of these alternative private banking options, you can get immediate access to banks in each of these countries in the GlobalBanks IQ Database. Use the link below to learn more about GlobalBanks IQ now.

Frequently Asked Bahamas Banking Questions

Below are a few of the most common questions we receive from people considering private bank accounts in The Bahamas. If you have further questions you would like answered, donโ€™t hesitate to get in touch with us directly.

How Much Money Do You Need for a Private Bank Account?

The money you need to open a private bank account will depend on the bank you choose to open with. That said, your client profile and banking objectives will also influence how much you need to deposit. In The Bahamas, most non-resident applicants will need to deposit up to 1,000,000.

How Do I Open an Offshore Bank Account in the Bahamas?

To open an offshore bank account in The Bahamas, each client will need to identify a bank that matches their profile and banking requirements and has deposit requirements that they can meet. These steps include submitting a formal application, obtaining any required document authentications, and making the required account opening deposit. However, it’s important to note that not all banks in The Bahamas accept non-residents. So, if you are planning on opening an offshore bank account in the Bahamas, you will need to carefully choose where to apply.

Can I Open a Bahamian Bank Account Online?

Yes, you can open a Bahamian bank account online. In fact, you can open personal, private, and business bank accounts with Bahamian banks 100% remotely. Of course, not all banks in The Bahamas offer online account opening. Additionally, not all banks in The Bahamas accept foreign non-residents. That said, if you know which banks to apply to and how to navigate the account opening process, opening an account in The Bahamas is possible without stepping foot in the country.

Ready to Open an Offshore Bank Account?

If so, you can access GlobalBanks Insider and start the process of applying for an offshore account in a few clicks.

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And “yes!” GlobalBanks Insider is designed to help foreign and non-resident individuals and companies open bank accounts.

Use this link to see how GlobalBanks Insider can help you successfully open accounts.

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GlobalBanks Team
GlobalBanks Team

The GlobalBanks editorial team comprises a group of subject-matter experts from across the banking world, including former bankers, analysts, investors, and entrepreneurs. All have in-depth knowledge and experience in various aspects of international banking. In particular, they have expertise in banking for foreigners, non-residents, and both foreign and offshore companies.

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