India

Top 10 NRI Banks in India for savings account


NRI banking facility has truly made it easier to transfer funds to India without much hassle. Banks     normally provide the NRE or NRO savings accounts to people who reside outside India.This is pretty easy to maintain and can be  handy for the NRI resident as well as the family members who reside in India.

NRE Account

The NRE Account allows the client to maintain foreign currency in Indian rupees. This account is suitable for people who live abroad or for students who are studying and those who own business abroad. You can easily transfer funds via online and it has an advantage of not being taxable in India. On relocation to India he can convert the account to normal savings account but then this would be subject to tax.

NRO Account

NRO Accounts are for non-residents who wish to put their income generated in India in a savings account. This can be from rent from property or dividend or pension and so on. But here the interest earned on this account will be subject to Income Tax.

Difference between NRE and NRO

– You can deposit Indian currency in NRO account but this is not possible in NRE account.
– NRE account is tax free while the amount in the NRO account is subject to tax.
– Transferring money abroad is possible only in NRE account.

Here are list of some of the banks that offer their services for NRI’s and have special schemes designed for them.

Axis Bank NRI Account

Axis Bank is one of the privileged private banks in India who have managed to win the confidence of the customers with their efficient service. It came into operation in the year 1994 and it was successfully promoted by the Unit Trust of India, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC), National Insurance Company Ltd., The New India Assurance Company Ltd., The Oriental Insurance Company Ltd. and United India Insurance Company Ltd.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO INR 10,000 Rs 5 for every 100 short of the average balance or Rs 350 whichever is lower INR 100

Benefits

– This account allows for easy transfer of funds from NRE or FCNR accounts.
– You can easily make remittance from SWIFT/WIRE, Foreign Demand Draft, Foreign Currency Cheque, Travellers Cheque, Foreign Currency.

Eligibility

– Indian Citizen who resides abroad is eligible to open this account. Here are the criteria.
– An Indian who is residing abroad for employment, studies or business.
– An Indian posted in United Nation organization.
– Indians working in oil rigs, foreign airliners and mariners too.

Documentation

Passport Copy
Proof NRI status like Visa copy or residence permit
Overseas and Indian address
Passport size photo
For NRO account you need a copy of PAN card too.

Summary

The NRI/NRO account is a requirement for all Indian citizens living abroad. Axis bank has made some of best schemes for both NRI as well NRO accounts and its features are also pretty beneficial. The minimum balance of Rs 10000 is pretty high and may be difficult to maintain. Some banks don’t keep this clause and this could be one drawback for Axis Bank.

State Bank of India’s NRI Account

State Bank of India is a government owned undertaking that looks to offer financial services both to Indian as well as NRI clients. Saving scheme, fixed deposit scheme, NRI services, home loans are all available to its customers. Now NRI banking gives flexibility for Indians living abroad to park their funds in India.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO nil Rs 5 for every 100 short of the average balance or Rs 350 whichever is lower 100

Benefits

– The investment term for NRE account is a minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 10 years.Incase of an NRO account you get minimum period of 7 days and a maximum of 10 years.
– NRE accounts are free of Income tax while the NRO is taxable under Income Tax Act.
– Payment as well remittance from abroad to any bank.
– Cheques of individuals drawn on foreign account

Eligibility

– All NRI’s living abroad for employment, studies or business.
– These accounts also allow joint holding with a resident Indian too.

Documentation NRI/NRO

Passport Copy
Residence Visa
Two passport size photo
Xerox of telephone bill, electric bill or cheque of bank account abroad

Summary

The SBI account stands out to be best and customers have a good confidence on it too. They have branches all across the globe and availing its service is easy. The zero balance makes it easy to maintain the account without bothering about the minimum balance requirement. One major disadvantage is that you save the money in Indian currency so customers tend to incur loss from the fluctuations in the foreign exchange currency rates.

HSBC Bank NRI Account

HSBC offers its banking solution for people all across the globe. They offer Retail Banking and Wealth Management, Commercial Banking, Global Banking and Markets, and Global Private Banking services to its customers. For Non Resident Indians you can get HSBC Premier, HSBC Advance and the Basic Banking Savings Bank Deposit Account (BSBDA).

Features

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– The Principal and the interest of this account is tax free. But the interest on the NRO is subject to tax.
– The money in the NRE account can be easily converted into foreign currency and transferred out of India.
– You can also jointly hold this account with a resident Indian or an NRI.
– Avail overdraft facility against your NRE deposits.
– Term of the tenure is 1 to 3 years

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card(Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO INR 2,5000 Rs 350 per month 100

Eligibility

– All nonresident Indians are eligible to this account
– The average monthly balance (AMB) to be maintained is 150000 which is a combination of savings, current and fixed deposit. The balances of the customers who own more than one account will be taken into account while calculating the AMB.

Summary

The HSBC bank is world renowned bank and it gives easy accessibility to all the customer across the globe. You can operate your account from anywhere across the globe and avail funds as per your request. This account is freely repatriable which makes it easy to convert it back to foreign currency without any difficulty. But the average monthly balance of 150000 is a high amount and can be difficult to maintain.

YES Bank NRI Account

Cofounded by Rana Kapoor YES bank has made a significant name in the banking and finance industry. They started their operation in 2004 and continues to be par excellent in their services. Their NRI services is open to all Indians living abroad and makes it easy for the customer as well the family to have access to funds.

Features

– The money deposited in the account as well as its interest is fully repatriable.
– Users are handed a cheque book as well as debit card which is accessible worldwide.
– 24 hours internet banking facility and it comes with high levels of security.
The inter banking facility makes it easy for customers to access the bank from other cities too.
– The NRE account is tax free but the interest on the NRO is taxable.
You can interlink NRE as well as the NRO account to get flexibility in maintaining both accounts.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO Average quarterly balance is 10,000 5% of balance shortfall INR 149

Eligibility

All Indians living abroad are eligible to this account.
– These accounts also allow joint holding with a resident Indian too.

Documents

Photocopy of Passport with address and date of birth.
Photocopy of Visa

Summary

The Average Quarterly Balance is 10000 and if it short falls by less than 50% then the cut is 5%.If the AQB falls short more than 50% then 10% cut will be done. This average balance is not too high and can be easily maintained. But again this funds gets tied up here and cannot be utilized elsewhere. So this could be one disadvantage

ICICI Bank NRI Account

ICICI Bank has been leading name in the banking industry. It has specialized banking products targeting all segments of the society. With over 4050 branches this bank has definitely won the confidence of its customers and has been most innovative in terms of online banking. The NRI customers can open an NRE account or NRO account as per their convenience

Features

– Tax free interest
– Free conversion of money and easy transfer of funds.
– 
International ATM cum Debit card provided.
– Easy transfer of money with over 100 banks in India.
– Interest rate is 4% per annum and it is calculated on the daily closing balance. It is paid half yearly in the months of June and December.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO INR 10,000 Rs 350 per month INR 199 +service charges

Eligibility

An Indian who is residing abroad for employment, studies or business.

Documents

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Passport copy
Visa proof
For NRIs belonging to Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, UK, and USA they are also required to give a self-drawn initial funding cheque.

Summary

The NRE funds are tax free and comes with easy conversion of funds into any foreign currency. The NRE as well as the NRO account requires a minimum balance of 25000 and an average balance of 10000 monthly. The minimum balance is not very high but again the funds remain idle and customer incurs a loss as the rates continuously change in foreign exchange market.

HDFC Bank NRI Account

HDFC Bank has around 4000 branches across India and is well known in the field of banking. Their branches are located abroad also and cater to banking needs of all people. Indians residing abroad can easily remit the money without having to approach the bank. Apart from the banking services they also look Investments in Mutual Funds, Insurance or Portfolio Management Services.

Features

– The Principal and the interest in the NRE account is tax free while the NRO account is taxable.
The money is saved in Indian currency.
– Easy repatriabilty of funds. You can transfer the funds and convert it into any foreign currency.
– You have option to link the NRE Fixed with the NRE savings so that they don’t lose on the interest in case there is a small deficit.
– This account can be jointly held by a non-resident India or a resident Indian.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO INR 10,000 Rs 150 per month INR 150

Documents

Photocopy of passport
Visa/work permit copy
One passport size photo
An initial payment in the form cheque or draft which is needed to maintain the average monthly balance.

Eligibility

All non-resident Indians with Indian nationality or Indian origin are eligible to open the account.

Summary

The average monthly balance to be maintained is 10000 which is not very high. But banks like SBI offer zero minimum balance criteria. So looking at that the amount seems a little high. But HDFC bank has worldwide acceptance and its credibility makes it a good deal to bank here.

Punjab National Bank’s NRI Account

It’s one of the oldest banks in India and has been serving around 80 million customers. They have numerous branches abroad and offer their banking services to customers stationed there. For Indians who wish to keep their funds in India can also opt NRE or NRO facility. These accounts are easy to operate and allow easy remittance of funds to the account.

Features

– The funds send in foreign currency will be converted into Indiana rupees.
– The NRE account will be free from Income Tax while the NRO account’s interest is subject to tax.
– These accounts can also be opened on a temporary visit to foreign country and can be made against travelers’ cheque, notes or coins.
– You have the option to convert the money into foreign currency the rate which is currently prevailing.
– Transactions above 100000 is required to be reported under sec 4A.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO NIL Rs 150 per month INR 150

Documents

Two passport size photo
Passport copy pages
Initial remittance for the account in the form of demand draft, personal cheque or wire transfer.

Eligibility

All non-resident Indians with Indian nationality or Indian origin are eligible to open the account.

Summary

PNB is a popular bank and its services in the banking field is par excellent. NRE account and the NRO can be easily availed and money can be transferred without any difficulty. You can even convert the money into foreign currency as and when required but loss incurred in the change in exchange rate will have to be borne by the customer itself.

Citibank NRI Account

Citibank is a US based multinational financial service firm which caters to the banking needs globally. They have customers across USA, Europe, Middle East and Asia. For Indians living abroad they have specifically designed NRE and NRO accounts. They can save their money in Indian currency and get them converted into foreign funds when needed. This money can also be accessed or jointly held by their relative too.

Features

– The money can be deposited for a minimum period of 7 days for NRO or a term of 1 year to 5 years for NRE account.
– You can make use of the online facility to deposit funds into your account.
– You have option to link the NRE Fixed with the NRE savings so that they don’t lose on the interest in case there is a small deficit.
– The funds send in foreign currency will be converted into Indian rupees.
– In case of NRE account you can add non-resident Indians as your joint account holder whereas in NRO you can add resident as well as non-resident to your account

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO INR 80,000 If monthly balance (AMB IS 40,000) is not kept then 1% cut of the shortfall will be deducted or INR 400 which ever is lower Nil

Documents

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Photocopy of passport.
Visa/work permit copy.
One passport size photo.
An initial payment in the form cheque or draft which is needed to maintain the average monthly balance.

Eligibility

All non-resident Indians with Indian nationality or Indian origin are eligible to open the account.

Summary

Citibank is more of a commercial bank and has an exclusive set of customers. Their minimum balance requirement is high but considering elite customers they look into it is pretty reasonable. For all foreign currency conversion there is a small fee of 3.5% for ATM withdrawals and Debit card transactions. So it’s better to do lump sum transactions rather than many small conversions.

Canara Bank NRI Account

Headquartered in Bangalore this is another nationalized bank which has a great public acceptance. They have specialized services for nonresident Indians and allow them to operate accounts. They have branches across the globe and customers can easily approach the banks or access their accounts through online.

Features

The NRO accounts facilitate easy collection of rent, dividend or other sources of income. But this accounts interest subject to income tax.

The NRE account allows remittance from abroad. It is free of tax.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO 1000(AMB) 4% Nil

Eligibility

An Indian who is residing abroad for employment, studies or business.

Documents

Passport Copy
Residence Visa
Two passport size photo
Xerox of telephone bill, electric bill or cheque of bank account abroad

Summary

Canara Bank has a good reputation and being nationalized bank it is pretty bankable. Here the charges are pretty nominal and the average minimum balance is also not difficult to maintain. Customers can transfer funds in their NRE or NRO accounts and interlink them for future use. You can even transfer them back into foreign currency as and when required.

South Indian Bank NRI Account

South Indian Bank is a private bank which has made a good reputation in the banking field. Their services has been exceptional and they have introduced some of the most innovative methods in their banking. For the non-resident Indians they have the NRO as well as the NRE accounts. Customers can avail either one of them or both as per their requirement.

Features

– The NRE account can be held as savings account or term deposits.
– The NRE account is not susceptible to income tax while the NRO has tax deduction.
– Nomination facility can be availed in NRE account.

Type of Account Minimum Balance Charges Debit Card (Visa) Annual Charges
NRE/NRO 1000(AMB) 4% Nil

Eligibility

All non-resident Indians with Indian nationality or Indian origin are eligible to open the account.

Documents

Copy of the latest passport
Work permit/Visa copy
Two passport size photos

Initial remittance for the account in the form of demand draft, personal cheque or wire transfer.

Summary

The average monthly balance is Rs 1000 which is pretty nominal. This is easy to maintain and non-resident Indians can access it online. The South Indian bank has numerous branches and customers can be easily approach these branches. You can even convert the money into foreign currency as and when required but loss incurred in the change in exchange rate will have to be borne by the customer itself.

Talk about different bank offering exclusive NRI offers, different offers from various regions like USA, Middle Easy, UK, hidden charges, minimum charges, requirements to start account, limitations and basically a comparison of the top 10 banks offering NRI offers and makes it easy for the customer as well.


Hi, Mani Karthik here. Having lived in USA, India & Middle East, and worked for big MNC’s to startups, I have a lot to share with you. My aim is to help people, by sharing everything I’ve learned in life, through this blog. It’s read today by more than 150K people world over! I currently live in LA, California and visit India occasionally. Here’s my full story on who I am and why I blog. Connect with me on FBInstagram, Twitter or WhatsApp (+001-408-489-4785). Happy to help! 🙂


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