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Backpacker Bank Account Australia

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Backpacker Bank Account Australia

1. Posted by martinlaw731 (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Hello all,

So in order to get paid you will have to have an Australian bank account when in Australia, this is when I did a little research and found that there are 2 possible way in doing so:
1. Apply when you get there.
2. Apply before you get there.
Apparently if I were to apply when I arrive then I would need to score 100 points of their requirement (something related to correct documentations) and an address for the card to be posted to me, whilst waiting at least 28 days before this happens.

Has anybody encountered this before and how did you go about solving it? i.e what are the actual 100 points consist of, what did you use as the address and how long typically do I need to wait before I can actually start working?

Much Obliged :)


2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 5087 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

It's been a long time since I looked into the details of this (so things might have changed?), but during the first few weeks (maybe those 28 days) after arriving in Australia on a WHV, just a passport is the full documentation requirement you need. After that you'd need additional forms of identification like an Australian driver's license or a utility bill in your name, which most backpackers wouldn't have. This is why you should not wait too long with opening an account. (I opened one in the first week after arriving, and got my bank card after about a week.)

For the address (for sending your bank card to) you can just use your hostel's address. Remember to tell them not to send you any bank statements.

3. Posted by martinlaw731 (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Hello Sander,

Thank you very much for your help but I've actually managed to sort one out now :).

For others who are having the same problem, what I did was to call the bank (in my case Commonwealth) via the overseas number and ask for an account to be opened before I arrive to Australia.
They will then ask you some basic personal information and what type of account you will need, make sure you ask for one that doesn't charge you monthly rate (its something like AUS$4 per month), mine is 12 months free of this charge.
In order to collect the card and to activate the account, you must go in person to a designated branch (arranged over the phone) with your passport and an E-mail printout.

Things to note:

Cheque takes something like 28 days for the fund to go through.
International transfers cost up to AUS$11 handling fee depending on the amount + whatever handling fee your local bank charges.
The information above are for Commonwealth bank so other bank might be slightly different.