It’s possible to open a bank account in Barbados as a foreign non-resident. However, Barbados is not your standard offshore banking hub, instead banks here cater almost exclusively to high-net-worth and commercial clients.
In fact, Barbados is a favorite jurisdiction for Canadian and UK expats and business owners seeking tax efficiency, private banking, investment management, and specific commercial banking benefits.
As we’ll discuss, one of the major catalysts for banking here is the wide range of double tax agreements (DTAs) in place, currently numbering more than 40. Of course, whether Barbados is suitable for your banking needs requires a closer look at the country and the banks.
Use the information below to learn more about banking in Barbados or select the type of account you’re interested in to start navigating your options now.
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Barbados Bank Account Opening
In this free country guide, we’re going to help you navigate how to open a bank account in Barbados. This will include personal banking and business banking for foreigners, non-residents, and international entities.
In fact, depending on your client profile and desired deposit level, you can even open an offshore bank account in Barbados 100% remotely.
Feel free to use the table of contents to find the most relevant information for your Barbados banking needs.
Table of Contents
How to Open a Bank Account in Barbados
Before taking a look at the step-by-step process to open a bank account in Barbados, it’s important to understand the key considerations and clients that Barbados banks accept.
With this in mind, here’s a quick snapshot of key bank account opening considerations and the prospective clients that can consider opening here.
Of course, not all banks in Barbados accept all client types. In fact, in most cases, the largest banks in Barbados only accept local residents, local businesses, or very large corporate clients.
That said, there are Barbados banks that actively accept foreign non-resident clients. This is why we prepared a dedicated list of banks in Barbados to help you navigate your options.
If you correctly choose a bank that accepts foreign non-residents, remote opening is usually possible. This is true for most nationalities, residencies, and countries of registration.
Likewise, very few banks here will accept foreign or offshore companies and structures. But, those banks that do can often accept companies from a wide range of jurisdictions. Of course, opening in Barbados will be easier for a company when it has an existing relationship with the bank, clear reasons for opening in the country, or is prepared to make a compelling opening deposit.
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Who Can Open Offshore Bank Accounts in Barbados?
There are a number of factors that go into determining who can open an offshore bank account in Barbados. These factors range from involved countries, transaction activity, source of income and wealth, risk profile, and much more.
We discuss all of these factors and more in GlobalBanks IQ for our premium members.
In short, GlobalBanks IQ helps members navigate their unique client profile, understand their risk factors, and determine how to clearly and accurately communicate with banks.
In doing so, our members avoid accidentally red-flagging themselves by saying things that could be misconstrued or misinterpreted by bankers and compliance teams.
So, if you’re interested in learning more about GlobalBanks IQ and how you can start opening bank accounts in Barbados today when you join, click here or use the link below to see everything you unlock with immediate access.
Personal Bank Accounts in Barbados
Personal bank accounts in Barbados can be opened by foreign non-residents, foreign temporary residents, foreign permanent residents, and of course, Barbadian nationals living in Barbados and abroad.
In other words, regardless of your residency status, it is possible to open a personal bank account in Barbados if you choose the right bank and navigate the account opening process properly.
That said, Barbados is best for non-residents seeking banking and financial services that are categorized as wealth management services. However, there are account opening options at lower opening thresholds here as well, though other jurisdictions are often better suited to these client profiles.
Needless to say, banking in Barbados is not restricted to the Barbados Dollar (BDS), which is the currency of Barbados. In most cases, clients only transact in major international currencies.
Of course, banks here do have restrictions on certain nationalities, residencies, and certain risk profiles. So, understanding your client profile and how banks perceive you is important before approaching bankers and applying for accounts.
You can access our free guide on opening a personal bank account in Barbados by clicking here, which gives you the step-by-step process to start opening accounts and how to choose a bank that is right for you.
Business Bank Accounts in Barbados
Business bank accounts in Barbados are primarily centered on banking large corporate clients, which represents around 85% of total bank assets in the country.
With this in mind, small businesses looking for offshore bank accounts that can support transactional and operating requirements will be better matched to other jurisdictions.
That said, there are also account opening options for foreign and offshore structures looking to benefit from private banking and investment management services.
To help you decide if Barbados is right for your business we have prepared a free guide on opening a business bank account in Barbados, which includes important considerations for both foreign and offshore entities.
Risks of Banking in Barbados
Yes, there are risks when banking in Barbados. That said, this is true in any country that you might be considering opening accounts in.
Of course, there are Barbados-specific risks that all prospective account openers should consider before opening accounts.
These risks may impact how to send money to Barbados, and they can impact the specific banks that you decide to open with.
With this in mind, our team has covered the most common risks you’ll face when banking in Barbados, which can be accessed here right now.
Offshore Banking Resources for Barbados
To help you successfully open bank accounts in Barbados, our team of international banking experts has created detailed bank profiles, actionable banking insights, and account opening strategies for banks in Barbados that open accounts for foreign non-resident individuals and entities.
Here is a look at all of the banking resources that you can access right now to help you navigate your Barbados banking options:
These resources are delivered exclusively to our premium members through GlobalBanks IQ, which you can unlock immediately.
GlobalBanks IQ provides immediate access to everything you need to open Barbados Bank Accounts for you or your business!
- Choose banks in minutes with our international banking database
- Open accounts with detailed step-by-step instructions
- Handle banker questions easily with detailed conversation scripts
- Meet bank requirements (e.g. local address) with proven solutions
- Unlock exclusive offers from the best banks in our member reports
- Receive lists of banks that accept high-risk & offshore businesses
- Plus much more!
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Frequently Asked Barbados Banking Questions
Below are a few of the most common questions we receive from people looking to open a bank account in Barbados. If you have additional questions that you’d like to ask our team, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Can I Open a Bank Account as a Non-Resident in Barbados?
Yes, you can open a bank account as a non-resident in Barbados. However, Barbados banks cater almost exclusively to private banking and wealth management. That said, there are banking options in Barbados that allow account opening at lower deposit thresholds as well. Of course, each bank has its own account opening requirements, restrictions, and client preferences that you should consider before choosing where to apply.
What Foreign Banks Are in Barbados?
Foreign banks operating in Barbados include both international and regional commercial banks. Not surprisingly, international branches of Canadian commercial banks play an important role here, as they do across most Caribbean banking hubs. The specific services offered by banks, both Canadian and otherwise, vary widely and will impact the accounts that you can consider opening.
What American Banks Are in Barbados?
There are no American banks in Barbados offering retail or commercial banking services. That said, Citibank does have merchant banking operations in Barbados through Citicorp Merchant Bank Limited, which provides access to debt capital markets and financing solutions for large corporations, financial institutions, public companies and governments. With this in mind, Citibank in Barbados is not a suitable account opening option for individuals or entities seeking retail banking services.
Free Barbados Banking Resources
Below you’ll find our archive of free banking resources for Barbados to assist with account opening.
This includes detailed articles to help you open bank accounts explaining how to navigate challenges for specific client types and more.