Basic Information on Opening a Bank Account in Korea:

You should have received a bank account during your orientation. Normally, Korean bank accounts require an ARC to open, but EPIK has been able to open your account with just your passport numbers. This is a normal, fully-functioning bank account. You will need to keep this bank account open at least until your entrance allowance is received (from EPIK). After that, as long as you have an ARC, you are free to close it and switch to a different bank. Of course, you may also choose to keep it open as well.


For direct deposit of your pay, you will need a Korean bank account. You can open an account with your alien registration card after it has been issued. Consider getting a Checkcard which is equivalent to a debit or ATM card. When you get the Checkcard, you can sign up for it to work at ATM machines only or have it work at ATM machines and also work as a debit card to pay with at stores. When you open an account, you will receive a bank book. If you would like to use the bank book at ATM machines to withdraw money, make sure your bank book is signed up for this service. Because Daegu Bank is the most prevalent one in the city, you might find it useful opening an account with them. However, if you wish to explore other banks as an option, consider KB Bank (great English website and English services), Woori Bank, Hana Bank, Nonghyup (no international transaction, but very upstanding/ethical practices - the bank of choice for Korea's farmers), Korea Exchange Bank and so on.

*It is always a good idea to bring your passport with you when you go to the bank (except for ATM transactions).

Remitting Funds to Your Home Account:
The first time you send money to your home account (international transfer) it may take up to 40 minutes to an hour to process the paperwork at the bank. Also, you need to take the following documents:
  1. Passport and Alien Registration Card
  2. Contract
  3. Pay Stub (provided by your school)
  4. Account Information of the Receiving Bank
After this first time, you will only need to bring the receipt of the previous transfer, pay stub, and alien registration card (unless you go to a different branch, at which point it would be wise to bring your passport).

*Please note that you can also do international transactions online with certain banks

Online Accounts
Setting up your online account can be a little confusing, as there are a lot of safety measures in place. It's best to ask your co-teacher to help you through the process, but we've outlined the basics.

You will have to sign up with your bank in order to create an online account. They will ask you to create your online ID/password at that time. They will also provide you with a security card that is basically full of 4 number codes. You MUST keep this card! You will need it in order to do any transactions online. When creating your account, you will also have to download a security certificate that is specifically linked to your bank account. You can either save this on your computer, or on a USB/external hard drive (you will subsequentally need to plug in that USB whenever you try to access your account). Once that is in place, your online account is complete!

Transferring Money to Other Korean Accounts
This can easily be done through an ATM. You will need the receiving party's account number and the name of their bank (KB, KEB, NH...etc). Just follow the instructions on the ATM and wait for a receipt of the transaction.

Direct Deposit
This is available regardless of the bank you ultimately choose. Just simply provide your administrative office with your bank information. They will also probably need a copy of your bank book.

Automatic Bill Pay
This option is available to you at any bank. You may want to enlist the help of your co-teacher, or someone else fluent in Korean, if you'd like to set it up online. Or, you can go to a bank teller and ask them to set it up (however, it might be helpful to take your co-teacher with you, or have it written on a piece of paper). All of your bills will be automatically deducted from your account monthly. If you don't have enough money in your account at any given time, the auto-deduct will be canceled and you'll have to set it up again. Make sure to cancel it if you move apartments!