Banks in Canada charge different fees for the same type of service. Look up monthly service charges, telephone and computer banking options, transaction charges, and interest to find the bank whose services best meet your needs.

What should I take with me to open a bank account?

  1. Your passport or birth certificate
  2. The second piece of identification (e.g. study permit)
  3. Money to deposit
  4. Your ACATCM Student ID card to be eligible for special student plans

Note: Banks have staff available to help when you apply for an account. Ask about student rates and plans.

Automatic Banking Machines (ABM) or Automatic Teller Machines (ATM)

  • When you open an account, you receive a plastic ATM/Debit/Bankcard. You will also be asked to choose a password called a “personal identification number” or PIN.
  • Bank machines are open 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
  • You can do all of your routine banking e.g. withdraw cash, deposit cash or cheques, pay bills, check transactions.
  • There is an extra charge for using an ATM that does not belong to your bank (up to $3).

Telephone Banking and Internet Banking (Online/PC Banking)

  • You can go online or use the telephone to pay bills, get your current account balance, hear or see your last five or 10 transactions, and transfer money between accounts.
  • You need your bank card and to choose a different password for telephone banking and internet banking.
  • Contact your bank for assistance.

Interac Direct Payment

You can pay for your purchases using your bank card in stores. You can withdraw funds from your account and transfer them directly to the retailer using your bank card and password.

Pre-Authorized Payments

You can choose to have your bills paid by “Pre-Authorized Debit” where the money is automatically transferred from your bank account to pay your bills. Ask your bank about this option.

Where can I get help managing expenses?

  • Prepare a BUDGET and follow it as closely as possible. Include allowances for all possible expenses in your budget, such as dental emergencies and travelling home.
  • For help preparing a budget and questions about expenses, talk to an International Student Advisor.
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