Setting Up a Bank Account
According to a general rule in the Danish legislation any person has the right to open a basic bank account (not including overdraft facilities, credit facilities or debit card). The way to open an account is simply to go into a bank, and ask for this. However, one needs a CPR-number (Civil Registration Number) before one can open an account. Furthermore, due to EU-rules one has to provide the bank with information such as full name, address and maybe other information, which has to be identified by the user by presenting an identity document preferably with a photo.
Easy Account (Nemkonto)
The basic account can be designated as an Easy Account (Nemkonto). An Easy Account is something everyone in Denmark should have. An Easy Account is a normal bank account and all payments from public institutions (tax refunds, child subsidies, pensions, student loans, unemployment benefits, housing support or social welfare payments) will be transferred directly to this account. This account saves time for both the customer and the public institutions. Read more about the Nemkonto here.
The “Dankort” is a Danish debit card, which can be used to withdraw money from all the bank's cash point machines and in most shops, as well as purchases.
The great thing about Dankort is that it can be used for almost any purchase, from chewing gum (ca. 7 kr.) to airline tickets (there is no minimum or maximum), and anywhere.
More than 90% of shops/bars/restaurants/cafés/groceries accept Dankort.
What Bank should I choose?
There are many different banks in Denmark. A few of these are very large and then there are a lot of local banks. Each bank has branches spread around the country.
It's possible to find information about the different Danish banks via the this sheet made by International Community.
E-banking and automatic payment of bills
Almost all banks offer e-banking to their customers, some even in English. It's an easy tool that allows one to pay bills, transfer money and check your financial assets at home.
In Denmark your bills will typically come as a giro-bill. It is possible to pay the giro-bill at the bank or at the post offices. You can also pay via your e-banking or sign that specific bill up to direct debit service; Betalingsservice. This is smart if the bill reoccurs each quarter, month or so on. More information on the direct debit service is available on www.nets-kortbetaling.dk
NemID is the new digital signature which allows you to access both private and public internet services using the same login information. For a stronger protection, NemID comprises of two parts, a password, which only you know, and a code card, which you get by post. You get your code card usually from your bank or you can order it here (only in Danish). You can use your NemID form any computer, but do not forget to sign out after you finish your work!
You can read more about NemID here.
Banks all over the country provide various opportunities for different types of bank loans. You will need to bring copies of salary slips and your final tax settlement from SKAT.
Loan prices vary from bank to bank, so it is worth shopping around for the right type of loan for your needs and at the right price.
You may find that the wesbite www.mybanker.dk is useful in ascertaining the comparative interest rates between banking insitutions (site is in Danish).
The Danish Currency (Kroner)
The Danish currency is called the Danish Krone (DKK). The current coins are 50 øre, 1 krone, 2 kroner, 5 kroner, 10 kroner and 20 kroner. The banknotes are 50 kroner, 100 kroner, 200 kroner, 500 kroner and 1000 kroner.
The currency rate listed below is from 10.04.2012. You can convert currencies at several websites, such as this one
The General Currency Rate:
1 US$ = 6.65 DKK 1 UK£ = 10.30 DKK 1 EUR = 7.46 DKK
(Last updated: 12.06.2015)
Approximate Living Expenses
Your private finances are your capital, income and expenses. Your income can be salary, income from self-employment or financial assistance from the state.
What does an average Danish salary look like?
The expenses can be rent, heating, electricity, food, clothes or whatever else you might need. You must pay tax on your income and profits from your own business.
In Denmark prices for accommodation, food, transport and entertainment are relatively high compared to other countries. However, at the same time, salaries are also relatively high and the Danish welfare scheme means that many public services are free – for example most medical treatment and education.
A Danish family’s expenses may typically be broken down as follows:
- Accommodation and maintenance 22%
- Food and drink 17%
- Transport and communications 17%
- Other goods and services – e.g. childcare 13%
- Equipment for leisure activities, entertainment 11%
- Heating and electricity 7%
- Furniture 6%
- Clothing and shoes 5%
- Medicines and medical expenses 2%
How to get your mobile up and going in Denmark?