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Bank accounts, TFN, Insurance

Travel Forums General Talk Bank accounts, TFN, Insurance

1. Posted by Lauren2611 (Budding Member 21 posts) 2y

Hi,

Just wondering what people usually do for banking while travelling? Im going to Thailand then Aus at the end of April and would like to know what everyone else does! Im really looking for recommendations for accounts that come with travel insurance if possible!

Also, where do I get a TFN?

Thanks
:)
Lauren x

2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4811 posts) 2y

You get the TFN online, but only after you've arrived in Australia. Hrm, and seems to now also require printing a resulting document, and then going to a post office to have your passport verified.
Anyway, details can be found on the ATO site.

Assuming you're only going to Thailand for a short time, just use ATMs to withdraw money from your account at home while there. Then when in Australia, walk into any bank branch (within the first few weeks after arrival), carrying AUD $50 (for an initial deposit) and your passport, and tell them you want to open a bank account. Fill in some forms, give them your hostel's address to send your debit card to, tell them not to send you bank statements, and then use internet banking from your own laptop (or a trusted person back at home) to transfer your money to your new Australian bank account. The various Australian banks are effectively indistinguishable from a backpacker's perspective, so you'll mostly just want one of the big ones with ATMs everywhere (ANZ, Westpac, CommonWealth and NAB), or check which ones currently offer no-fee accounts (if you can live with very strictly limiting the number of withdrawals you make per month).

3. Posted by Lauren2611 (Budding Member 21 posts) 2y

Hi Sander,

Thank you so much, you have been a great help!

Best Wishes
Lauren

Post 4 was removed by a moderator
5. Posted by mojorob (Moderator 1047 posts) 2y

Quoting Sander

You get the TFN online, but only after you've arrived in Australia. Hrm, and seems to now also require printing a resulting document, and then going to a post office to have your passport verified.
Anyway, details can be found on the ATO site.

It's unclear if a WHV holder (or new migrant) is required to attend a post office - this page on the ATO site (which is directed at migrants and temporary visitors) says the following:

When you apply online, you do not have to physically provide proof of identity documents – we will compare your personal and travel document details with DIBP’s records. When we validate your details, we will give you a receipt number.

However the "lodging your application" page says that you need to attend a participating Australia Post outlet.

Perhaps the requirement to go to a Post Office is only for non-migrants/temporary visitor (with WHV holders falling under the temporary visitor category).