Canada is one of the most attractive places on the planet for immigrants. Its strong and stable economy, job opportunities, and low unemployment rate attracts talent from around the globe. However, relocating to a new country is particularly stressful, especially in the first few months, as you must overcome the cultural shock, find a house, and get employed, among many other things. More importantly, you will have to get your financial life organized. To help with that, there are several newcomer banking packages, but this post explores the HSBC Canada Newcomers Program.
HSBC is one of the 10 biggest banks in Canada and they offer one of the most irresistible newcomer packages. But going to an HSBC branch, note that to qualify, you must have been living in Canada for less than 5 years. Within that time, you also must not have had an HSBC account. Coupled with that, you need a valid document to prove your residence – like your Canadian permanent residency card or work permit. You also need a form of identification such as a passport or driver’s license.
One of the biggest perks of the HSBC Newcomers Program are the bonuses available – valued at $1,000. Here is a quick breakdown of this program. Open a checking account with no fees in the first year. Even better, get a $500 welcome bonus if you sign up for online banking and make the stipulated minimum deposit. Should you decide to open a new HSBC investment fund, you also get a one-time $50 bonus.
There is a plethora of other smaller bonuses available. You are entitled to a $50 cash bonus whenever you make two bill payments or make two separate reoccurring pre-authorized transactions within a space of 3 months. Sending two foreign exchange global wires within 6 months also earns you a $50 cash bonus. Within the first 6 months of opening your chequing account, if you set a recurring payment, you get a $100 bonus. Within that timeframe, applying for an eligible credit card qualifies you for a $149 annual fee rebate. If you sign up for a safety deposit box, you get a cash bonus of $51.
HSBC’s standout feature in their newcomer’s package is the availability of a multi-currency account. This feature comes in handy for new Canadians that may need to be regularly sending money back home. Furthermore, even with no Canadian credit history, you could get an HSBC credit card with up to a $5,000 credit limit.
Before opting for any newcomer’s package, it is important to consider the minimum balance and fees associated with the package. Furthermore, the ease of getting credit and even the expiration duration for the free package should be taken into consideration. The HSBC’s Newcomers Program fares well on all these criteria.
However, unlike Canada’s Big Five – including Scotiabank, CIBC, RBC, TD, and BMO – HSBC has a relatively limited brick and mortar presence in Canada. Make sure you confirm their presence in your community before you opt for HSBC. Furthermore, HSBC allows you to open an online account and even transfer money before your arrival. This feature is only offered by HSBC and Scotiabank.
At the end of the day, the best approach is to list what matters to you in terms of banking perks and compare it your list tonthe packages offered by each bank. This way, you will find the newcomer’s program that is right for you.
View more information about the HSBC Canada Newcomers Program.