All the reasons you should get Monzo as an international student

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As an international student moving to the UK, there are far more interesting things to be doing than worrying about your finances.

But one of the first things you’ll need to do is open a bank account in the UK. Here are all the reasons you should open a current account with Monzo, to start your student life in the UK.

You can open a bank account before you arrive in the UK

Lots of banks won’t let you open an account until you’ve actually arrived in the UK. Which can be annoying if you want to start your new life straight away! 

Luckily, you can open a UK bank account with Monzo before you get to the UK, even if you don’t have proof of address. You just need an address in the UK where we can send your debit card (like a friend’s house or your work). 

And once you have somewhere permanent to live, you just need to update your address in the app!

Even if you don’t have proof of address yet!

If you try to open a bank account once you’re here, most banks will ask you for proof of address. That’s usually a utility bill (for your phone, water, council tax or electricity, for example).

But if you’ve just moved to the UK, it’s likely you won’t have any of these documents yet. You might not even have a permanent place to live yet! And, ironically, you usually need a bank account to get your bills set up in the first place. 

So it’s useful to know that you can get a bank account with Monzo, even if you don’t have proof of address yet.

That means you can get all your bills set up and pay for stuff with your debit card, as soon as you get here.

You’ll need a UK bank account to pay bills

If you want to pay rent, join a gym, or get a phone contract, you'll usually need a UK bank account. 

You can set up Direct Debits and see them all in one place, so you know how much you’ll spend each month.

And Direct Debits in Monzo look like this: 

direct debit

So you can see exactly who and how much you’ve paid clearly. 

We’ll even tell you if a bill goes up (so you can avoid any nasty surprises). 

Bills feature

If you want to work part-time, you’ll need a UK bank account to get paid

Whether you’re putting yourself through your studies, you’ve blown through your student loan, or you want to avoid maxing out your overdraft or sending grovelling texts to your parents – you might be thinking of getting a part-time job.

And whatever job you end up doing, you’ll usually need a UK bank account to get paid by your employer.

Once your wage comes into your Monzo account, you’ll be able to portion it off into Pots to help you budget and keep your spending under control. So you don’t live up to the British student stereotype and end up existing solely off beans on toast.

Monzo makes it easy to split bills and pay back your friends

You’re on your way back from a night out with your new uni friends. You pass a takeaway and everyone rushes in for food. But you’ve got no cash on you and the ATM is all the way back up the street. 

You’re too tired for that and seem destined to go hungry. But your friend whips out a crisp £20 note and offers to spot you. 

If they’re on Monzo too, you can pay them back in a few taps or they can split the bill with you – so you can enjoy your cheesy chips and new found friendship.

And it can help you avoid arguments with your housemates

If you’re living in a shared house, Monzo makes it easy to organise bills and share costs with your housemates, so you don’t end up arguing about money. 

Just set up a Shared Tab to keep track of who owes what, and settle up easily whenever you want.

shared tab

You can use Monzo back home and on holiday too

Take Monzo with you when you’re heading home for the holidays, or going travelling with friends. 

You can use your Monzo card to pay in shops, restaurants and online, anywhere in the world and in any currency, with no fees.

We pass Mastercard's exchange rate directly on to you, and don't add fees or additional charges.

You can take out up to £200 in cash every 30 days for free. And if you've used your free allowance, there's a 3% charge on withdrawals after that.

You don’t have to tell us you’re going abroad – we won’t block your card and leave you stranded.

Opening a Monzo account is easy

Signing up for Monzo account takes minutes, and you can do it all from your phone. Just download the app to get started!