Non Residents and their Bank Accounts: The 2021 Guide

Time and again we have wondered about the residential status of a citizen and the concepts of Non Residents and their Bank Accounts. We have already covered the basic aspect of Why is it important to have an NRE/NRO Account for an NRI. In this article, we will explore the various Bank Accounts that an NRI can hold and their benefits with focusing on three major banks in India: Citibank, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank.

Non Residents and their Bank Accounts: The 2021 Guide
Non Residents and their Bank Accounts: The 2021 Guide

Before we get into the details of the bank accounts that NRIs can hold, we need to understand the eligibility of becoming a Non-Resident Indian (NRI) and what exactly an NRI is:

Also, we are exploring the NRI Bank Accounts, so it is essential to know what are the benefits of opening an NRI Account.

Non Residents and their Bank Accounts: An Overview

In this section, we will try to glance through the various Non Resident Bank Accounts that NRIs can operate, which are:

  • Non-Resident External (NRE) Account: The NRE account can be opened for the purpose of maintaining the income earned outside India with tax free interest (upto 7.81%*) on Fixed Deposits. Both the principal amount and interest earned are completely repatriable from India. 
  • Non-Resident Ordinary (NRO) Account: The NRO account can be opened for the purpose of maintaining the income earned from India such as income from rent, pension, etc. The repatriation of the money in the account can be done up to a maximum of 1 million USD per financial year. Note: 30% tax + surcharge + education cess will be deducted at the source of interest earned in India
  • Foreign Currency Non-Resident (FCNR) Account: The FCNR account is a term deposit account in USD, GBP, EUR, JPY, AUD, CAD, SGD, HKD, and others. The ‘term’ in a term deposit account is a fixed tenure of up to 12 months, 24 months, 36 months, 48 months or 60 months that can be opted by the NRIs at the time of account opening. The interest income is not taxable in India and both the principal amount as well as the interest are completely repatriable.

NRI Bank Account Comparison: Citibank, ICICI and HDFC Bank

BanksAccount Opening ProcessInterest Rates
SavingsNRENROFCNR
CitibankFill the form onlineGet it printed and get the documents attested (Notary, Embassy or bank who has a presence in India)For Non-US, download the form, fill the details and attach the KYC documentsSend the documents to the Citibank BranchAccount will be opened after the receipt of the original set of forms and documents at the bank3.50%*3.90%*3.90%*0.01%*
ICICI BankRegister for NRI Account on websiteYou will receive a call within 30 minutesYou will receive form after callDownload the form, fill it and attach required documents and submit formAccount will be opened after the receipt of the original set of forms and documents at the bank3.5% (below 50 Lakhs)
4% (above 50 Lakhs)
5.50%*5.50%*1.42%*
HDFC BankFill your details onlineYou will receive a call from the bank to guide you through the next stepsThe account will be opened after finishing the next steps as discussed with the bank representative3.5% (below 50 Lakhs)
4% (above 50 Lakhs)
5.50%*5.50%*0.96%*

Non Residents can choose their bank accounts and the respective banks on the basis of the above mentioned factors that we explored for the three top banks in India: Citibank, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank.

SBNRI is a one-stop solution for opening all your NRI Bank Accounts in India and carry out further investments and get taxation advisory from experts. Click on the button below to open your NRI Bank Account effortlessly at the comfort of your home.

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