The best bank for expats in Madrid
Read this article to learn the best bank for expats in Madrid and to get the details of English speaking branches our customers have successfully worked with.
Sabadell offers zero-fee accounts and you can open an account from outside Spain before arriving in Madrid.
Why Sabadell is one of the best banks for expats in Madrid:
- No fees and no commissions, even for international transfers within Europe. Transfers to the UK and the US do incur fees. For large transfers outside of the EU, we recommend using a foreign currency specialist. You can save up to 3% using a currency broker.
- Sabadell gives you back 1% on all utility bills.
- Secure online banking in English
- Customer Service in English: Nelida at The Miguel Angel Branch will make sure everything goes smoothly. Sabadell has contracts in English. They will call you when your cards are ready, or when something strange is happening on your account,
- There is only one condition to keep your account feeless. You must have a minimum of 700€ a month transferred into the account. If you are under 29 years old, there is no minimum transfer requirement.
To get started, simply click the orange button below to send an email to the Miguel Angel 23 Branch (Metro Gregorio Marañon). Include a scan of your passport, your telephone number and your home address (it’s ok if it’s not in Spain).
Or you can directly email them at: ARIASNELIDA@bancsabadell.com
By going through Moving2Madrid, and working with the Miguel Angel 23 Branch, you will get special treatment. They will inform you of the special offers they have for Moving2Madrid customers and your account will be opened quickly, even before you arrive in Spain.
To keep all the advantages listed above, make sure you get your NIE and send it to them within the first 3 months so you do not get the non-resident tax of 26€ from the Spanish state. You can check the conditions in this summary.
CaixaBank is another excellent choice for expats. The bank has the best English resources and an English help line. They offer a special program called HolaBank, which is aimed at international clients. They offer high-value financial support, advice and guidance service tailored to meet your needs.
Why Caixal is one of the best banks for expats in Madrid:
- Free debit and credit cards
- Free Visa&Go card for the first year. Visa&Go is a credit card with deferred payments. The amount spent on the card is repaid in fixed instalments and the outstanding balance does not incur any interest. The maintenance charge is free in the first year, and free in subsequent years as long as you make purchases for an accumulated minimum of €600 a year (€25 a year in other cases).
- 24 free transfers per year within the EU. Again, transfers to the UK and the US do incur fees. For large transfers outside of the EU, we recommend using a foreign currency specialist. You can save up to 3% using a currency broker.
- Free conference call/translation services. Their team of interpreters will speak for you on the telephone to help you handle whatever you’re doing. They will also provide simultaneous translation services in English, French, German and Russian.
- CaixaBank will help you set-up all your utilities when you arrive in Spain.
- Assistance with home emergencies.
- Secure online banking in English
- Customer Service in English: Almudena at Calle Velasquez office will make sure everything goes smoothly. They have contracts in English. They will call you when your cards are ready, or when something strange is happening on your account,
- A variety of other non-banking services such as telephone medical service, helping you find domestic staff, a handyman service, etc.
To get started, visit their Calle Velasquez office and mention that you are a Moving2Madrid client. That branch has offered outstanding service to past clients. If you are looking for a mortgage, Caixa has the best rates and service.
About banking in Spain
Please keep in mind that banking is Spain is still a bit old-fashioned. All major transactions have to be done in person at the office where you opened your account. There is a great variation in service levels and English proficiency. Moving2Madrid vouches for the Sabadell Office at Miguel Angel, 23 in Madrid, and the Caixa office on Calle Velazaquez, in Madrid. They will answer your questions and make things happen. If you contact other offices in Spain, we cannot make any promises regarding the quality of service. Moreover, it is important to note that banking in Spain is still done on a branch basis. So if you open your account at one office, you will need to return to that same office for all but the simplest of transactions.
If you have any issue, just comment on this post and we will help you get it resolved. We cannot vouch for the rest of Sabadell or Caixa offices in Spain. We know these two and have requested special services and attention from them. If you have any more questions or doubts about the best banks for expats in Madrid, send us an email today and we can answer your questions.
Full disclosure: M2M does not have an exclusive agreement with Sabadell or Caixa. However, both banks reward referrers. Other banks, for instance ING, do the same. We refer our readers to Caixa and Sabadell because both have treated our clients exceptionally well in the past. Moreover, English is spoken in both branches we mention.
In fact, we did a survey on an expat facebook group and here are the results for freelancers and small business – exactly the same, Sabadell and Caixa first!