UKCISA have a useful blog on banking in the UK.
During Freshers’ Week, banks will often come on campus to help you open an account with them. Outside of this time, you will find a range of banks on the local high street.
- an application form from your preferred bank
- your passport
- confirmation that you are a full-time registered student at the University
- proof of your address in the UK
- You can request a bank letter from SRS in iExeter, or asking SID or PIP.
When to open bank account
You cannot open a bank account until you are in the UK and have registered on a programme of full-time study.
It can take up to 2 weeks to open a bank account as UK law requires banks to make detailed checks on your identity.
If your visa states that you are required to register with the police within seven days of arrival, we strongly recommend that you try to open a bank account as soon as you have registered with the University, and before you register with the police. This is because the police will keep your passport for at least two weeks and you cannot open a bank account without it.