Getting set up with a Canadian bank account is an important step for newcomers, but navigating a new banking system can be challenging. Regulations and terminology differ from country to country, and gathering the documents required to open an account can present logistical problems. Fortunately, with a variety of special services and bonuses available for newcomers, banks like HSBC are well-equipped to help newcomers with their transition to Canada.

What newcomers should consider when choosing a financial institution

Building credit is a key step to starting a new life in Canada, and it’s important for a newcomer to consider how a bank is willing to support them in this process. “Credit history is used to establish a pattern of how well you manage your financial obligations and to determine how safe it is to lend to and do business with you,” says David Kuo, Regional Head of Branch Network in Ontario at HSBC.

Choose a bank that values diversity and is willing to help you navigate the system. With a supportive bank behind you, you’ll have one less thing to worry about.

Some banks support mortgages for newcomers without current employment, which is an important consideration for those who wish to purchase a home. And since establishing a safety net is a common concern, partnering with an institution that helps navigate the government benefits of various savings accounts, like an RESP or TFSA, is essential.

Getting to know the banking system and getting used to new terminology is a big part of the transition process, so it’s also important to choose an institution with attentive customer service and an established international reputation. 

How HSBC leverages its status as an international bank to support newcomers

With 3,900 offices in 66 countries, HSBC is one of the world’s largest banking and financial services organizations. “You can open a Canadian bank account, and transfer funds into it, in many countries with an HSBC branch prior to arriving in Canada,” says Kuo. This option can help newcomers gather the documents required to open an account, since everything they need will be close at hand. 

HSBC’s unique Newcomers Program offers a variety of benefits, bonuses, and special rates designed to help people build a credit history in Canada. Newcomers can get a credit card for up to $2,000, a chequing account with $500 overdraft protection, a $500 joining bonus, and no monthly fees for 12 months, as well as a mortgage designed especially for newcomers.

Those are just some of this program’s many available benefits. You can learn more by visiting HSBC’s newcomers page on their website.