7 Best Canadian Banks in the USA for TN Visa Holders

Updated on January 4, 2024

At a Glance

  • Canadians can have bank accounts in the U.S.
  • Opening a bank account involves additional paperwork but is not overly difficult.
  • Accounts can be denominated in Canadian currency, depending on the bank’s services.
  • Requirements typically include photo identification and a Social Security Number (SSN) or Canadian equivalent (SIN).

If you’re a Canadian looking to open a bank account in the US, the odds are that you’ll stumble across several challenges. If you have a business that focuses on the US market, or you have a house there, you’ll definitely find it handy to open a bank account, as opposed to having many expenses while converting USD to CAD. And that’s precisely what this article is about: introducing a list of Canadian banks in the USA, alongside other important guidelines for a foreigner.

Can Canadians Have Bank Accounts in the U.S.?

It goes without saying that banks function by a range of given rules and specifications. And while there is definitely some extra paperwork involved, it is not that difficult to open a bank account as a Canadian. It is certainly not more difficult than working in the U.S. as a Canadian citizen. For instance, in this case, the TN Visa has been introduced, in an attempt to simplify the process of finding work in the U.S., as a Canadian.

That being said, the answer to this question is definitely affirmative. At the same time, depending on the service facilitated by the bank, you can even set up an account denominated in Canadian currency. But this is entirely up to you, depending on what applies best to your situation.

When you want to set up an account, you’ll be required to provide photo identification and a Social Security Number. Considering that you’re a foreign national and you don’t have a Social Security Number, you’ll still have to supply identification and sign a declaration referred to as Form W9. In Canada, the equivalent of the Social Security Number is the Canadian Social Insurance Number – the bank may require you to supply this.

Reasons Why a Canadian Might Have a U.S. Bank Account

There are various reasons why you might be interested in finding a comprehensive list of Canadian banks in the USA. We’ll assess the most common ones.

They Work on a Visa in the U.S.

If you work on a visa in the U.S., it goes without saying that having a U.S. bank account will come in handy. For instance, you cannot get a TN loan unless you have a U.S. bank account – this is a pretty basic procedure, whenever you apply for a loan, you ought to have a U.S. bank account.

It’s true that you won’t have access to the same loans as U.S. residents, but you will still have some options to choose from, granted that you need financing – which leads us to the topic of U.S. loans for Canadians. These loans can be used for building credit in the U.S., buying a car, or even for a down payment for a house.

They Own a Business in the U.S.

Furthermore, you might be concerned about a list of Canadian banks in the USA if you own a business in the U.S., or you’re planning to do so in the near future. If you have already established a company in the U.S., then you can open a corporate bank account. This is linked to many financial advantages, especially if you operate online payments with other firms based in the U.S.

They Travel to the U.S. often

On a different note, Canadians that travel to the U.S. on a regular basis will most likely find a U.S. bank account handy. You will find that paying for goods while having a bank account is easier and it also eliminates the costs of converting different currencies. To that end, if you’re already considering applying for a TN visa, and researching TN visa taxes, perhaps you should open a bank account in the U.S. as well.

They Own Property in the U.S.

If you’ve already made a financial investment in the U.S. and you own property, having a bank account is a must. On the other hand, if you are planning on getting property in the U.S.. and you’re considering a TN visa mortgage, you’ll most likely need a U.S. bank account at some point.

Canadian Banks in the U.S.

Now, after briefly introducing the main reasons why one would need a list of Canadian banks in the USA, let’s get to the actual list – shall we?

1. BMO Harris

BMO Harris makes it very easy for a Canadian to open a U.S. bank account. There are many advantages worth noting. For one thing, you can go through the entire procedure over the phone. This can be really convenient if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands to go to various banks.

At the same time, there are some specific accounts that don’t entail a balance requirement for waiving fees. On the other hand, a drawback could be that interest is paid specifically on the highest-tier account. In addition, note that if you plan on opening a bank account with BMO Harris, you won’t be required to open a Canadian account as well.

Concurrently, bear in mind that BMO Harris has partnered with the Canadian bank BMO. Still, they are independent of one another. The process is time-efficient and you’ll most likely get it over within a few days’ time.

2. CIBC Online Banking

This is another bank that provides you with the opportunity of opening a U.S. bank account. However, before considering this, you should know that you must be an existing CIBC client prior to opening an account. This could be seen as a drawback by some people. Another potential disadvantage is the fact that the balance for maintaining the waived fees is quite high.

After pointing out some of the potential disadvantages, let’s move our focus to the benefits, shall we? For one thing, there is the fact that you can set up your account online, without necessarily having to go to a physical bank.

Concurrently, transferring money from your U.S. bank account to your Canadian bank account is effortless using CIBC Online Banking. Another thing that may be of interest to you is the compatibility of the account with Apple Pay.

3. RBC Georgia

Our list of Canadian banks in the USA continues with RBC Georgia whose prerogative is to allow you to simplify your finances, so to speak. This bank enables you to set up an account, or get a U.S. credit card, U.S. loan, or U.S. mortgage, depending on what you need. In order to set up an account, you don’t need a U.S. address, as your Canadian address will be just enough. Plus, you don’t need to provide a Social Security Number. However, you should have an account at RBC Royal Bank in Canada.

At the same time, a great advantage provided by this bank is that you can pay your bills in a matter of seconds – whether you’re in the USA or you’re in Canada. In addition to that, considering that you have to transfer money, this is made readily available and accessible through RBC online banking. You can do this free of charge, and the best part is that you can transfer money from your Canadian bank account to your U.S. bank account.

It would be safe to say that this bank aims at making life easier for Canadians living in the U.S. With that in mind if you’re traveling to the U.S. and you want to save some money on foreign exchanges, RBC bank is worth considering. Concurrently, this bank outlines that the staff is expressly dedicated to helping foreigners comprehend the differences between the Canadian and the U.S. banking systems. With the Premium Checking Account, you no longer have to worry about foreign transaction fees.

4. Desjardins Florida

Desjardins Bank allows people to make day-to-day transactions really easily. Concurrently, it does this at a low cost. In case you become a member of a Desjardins Caisse in Canada, there are many advantages you’d benefit from. Simply put, when you’ll leave for Florida, your account will already be open. If you want or need to, you have the possibility of transferring money in advance. What is more, you will already have a Desjardins Bank debit card.

To open an account, they require a valid photo ID and your passport. Nevertheless, in order to have an account, you should note that they ask for a minimum, which is to be paid to Desjardins Bank via a funds transfer.

Depending on the type of account you are setting up, the required sum of money will differ. Online banking is really convenient as well, enabling you to make transfers between different accounts, check your balances on a regular basis, pay your bills, assess your statements, check past transactions, and so on.

5. NatBank by National Bank

If you want to open an account for your savings or to be able to make transactions, Natbank can assist you in this respect, as well. Having a bank account here comes with the following benefits: access to more than 1,200 ATMs in Florida and other U.S. states, e-statements, and online banking.

Depending on the type of account you want to set up, the specifications will differ. This is why it is better to contact an advisor to find out more information about the requirements you should meet for opening an account.

6. Chase

Chase banking makes it very easy to open a bank account in the US. There are more types of accounts, and you can pick the one that addresses your specifications the best. In order to set up an account, though, you will need an SSN or your driver’s license or state ID. At the same time, just as in the case of other banks, you have to facilitate your contact information. Note that there is a minimum deposit required for opening an account with Chase.

On a different note, if you’re studying in the US, you might qualify for getting up to five subsequent years of $0 monthly fees. Once you have opened a bank account with Chase, you can make transactions from almost anywhere, via your tablet, phone or computer, not to mention that there are 5,100 branches nationwide.

7. TD Bank

And lastly, another bank worth including in our list of Canadian banks in the U.S. is TD Bank. There are three types of accounts you can choose from – namely TD Simple Checking, TD Convenience Checking, and TD Premier Checking. For instance, in the case of TD Simple Checking, there’s no minimum balance required, and there is no specific low monthly maintenance fee. What are the steps that you should follow for opening an account?

You have to select your primary residence. In case your primary residence is in Canada, you can work with TD Bank based in the U.S. as Cross-Border customers. With that in mind, even if you’re in Canada, you have to pick the closest bank location to you. After doing that, you can proceed with the online application process, which is to the point and prompt.

You must provide your passport or Nexus card number. In addition to that, you have to supply a second form of ID. Your contact information should be included, as it is logical, and, of course, your source of income. You might be required to answer a range of questions in order to verify your identity. However, this won’t impact your credit score or anything of the kind.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What are the best Canadian banks in the USA for TN Visa holders?

  1. RBC Bank (U.S.): A subsidiary of the Royal Bank of Canada, offering cross-border banking solutions tailored for Canadians in the U.S.
  2. TD Bank, N.A.: The U.S. subsidiary of Toronto-Dominion Bank, providing a range of banking services suitable for Canadians in the U.S.
  3. BMO Harris Bank: A part of the Bank of Montreal Financial Group, offering banking services in the U.S. with benefits for Canadian residents.
  4. CIBC Bank USA: Offers integrated cross-border banking solutions for Canadians living or working in the U.S.

What services do these banks offer to TN Visa holders?

These banks typically offer services like checking and savings accounts, credit cards, mortgages, loans, and investment services, with features designed to facilitate easy banking across the U.S. and Canada.

Are there any special banking features for TN Visa holders at these banks?

Many of these banks offer features like no-fee or low-fee cross-border banking, easy currency conversion, and the ability to access accounts in both the U.S. and Canada with relative ease.

Can TN Visa holders get credit cards from these banks in the USA?

Yes, TN Visa holders can often get credit cards from these Canadian banks operating in the U.S., which may help in building a credit history in the United States.

How do these banks assist with currency conversion and transfers?

These banks typically offer favorable exchange rates for CAD to USD conversions and facilitate easy transfers between U.S. and Canadian accounts, which is beneficial for TN Visa holders managing finances in both countries.

Do these banks provide online and mobile banking services in the USA?

Yes, these Canadian banks in the USA provide comprehensive online and mobile banking services, allowing customers to manage their finances digitally.

Can TN Visa holders avail of mortgage and loan services from these banks?

TN Visa holders can often avail of mortgage and loan services from these banks, which might include special provisions or assistance for Canadian citizens in the U.S.

Are there any specific account packages for Canadians in the U.S. at these banks?

Many of these banks offer specific account packages for Canadians living or working in the U.S., which include a variety of tailored services and benefits.

How easy is it to open an account with these banks as a TN Visa holder?

Opening an account is generally straightforward, with options to start the process online or in-person. These banks are experienced in handling cross-border banking needs, making it easier for TN Visa holders.

Do these banks offer financial advisory services for TN Visa holders?

Yes, most of these banks offer financial advisory services, which can be particularly helpful for TN Visa holders navigating the complexities of financial management while living abroad.

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We hope that our article on the list of Canadian banks in the U.S. was comprehensive enough. As you can see, there are plenty of options to choose from, not only when it comes to opening a bank account, but also when it comes to loans.

You might have to do a bit of extra research and go the extra mile to find the perfect deal for you, but when there’s a will there’s a way. Make sure you get your facts straight before making a decision.

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Frank Gogol

I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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