The finance and banking sector is one of the biggest in Luxembourg, and it represents around a third of the country's GDP. There are 136 banks in Luxembourg, including both local and international branches, making banking easy and convenient for expats in Luxembourg.
Currency in Luxembourg
As Luxembourg is part of the Eurozone, the currency is the Euro, which is divided into 100 cents.
- Notes: 5 EUR, 10 EUR, 20 EUR, 50 EUR, 100 EUR, 200 EUR and 500 EUR
- Coins: 5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents and 50 cents and 1 EUR and 2 EUR
Banking in Luxembourg
Expats have plenty of banks to choose from in Luxembourg. Banque Centrale du Luxembourg is the country's national bank, but there are a number of other big local and international banks in the country, including Banque Internationale à Luxembourg, ING Luxembourg, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, Citibank and BNP Paribas Fortis, among many others.
Banks in Luxembourg are generally open from 8:30am to 4:30pm, Monday to Friday, and some banks are also open from 9am to 1pm on Saturdays. They offer a range of services, including current and savings accounts, credit cards, loans, investments, online and mobile banking, as well as specific expat services such as multi-currency accounts.
Opening a bank account
It's not a legal requirement for expats to open a bank account in Luxembourg. Foreigners can manage their money from an overseas account, but an account with a bank in Luxembourg will make an expat's life infinitely simpler when it comes to everyday money matters, drawing salaries and paying bills.
Expats face no restrictions when it comes to opening a bank account. Most banks require expats to visit a branch in person to open an account, but there are certain banks that allow them to open an account online, meaning they can do this while overseas, prior to arriving in Luxembourg. To open a bank account online, expats may need to post or send scanned copies of required documents.
Most banks will require a form of ID, such as a passport or national ID card and a proof of address (either local or foreign). Some banks may also require proof of employment or income, and a tax number.
Once all of the required documents have been submitted, the bank account is usually set up quickly and expats receive their bank card and information within a few days.
Thanks to the vast number of banks in the country, finding an ATM is incredibly easy in Luxembourg. They are generally situated outside of bank branches, shopping centres and supermarkets.
International bank cards, such as Visa and MasterCard, can be used at ATMs in Luxembourg. Some machines also accept American Express, but this is not guaranteed. Expats will be charged fees when using ATMs unaffiliated with their bank.
Cash is still used fairly often in Luxembourg, but it is not essential for expats to carry cash, as credit and debit cards can be used everywhere, and online and mobile payments are also popular methods.
Taxes in Luxembourg
The laws surrounding taxes in Luxembourg differ for residents and non-residents. An expat is considered a resident if they've lived in the country for more than six consecutive months. Non-residents pay tax only on the income earned within Luxembourg, while residents pay tax on their worldwide income. The amount of tax an expat pays depends on their annual income and can be anywhere between 0 and 42 percent.
Highly skilled expats who are recruited to work in Luxembourg may be eligible for the impatriate tax regime. This is a tax exemption of up to 50 percent of an amount which cannot exceed 30 percent of an expat's annual salary. An expat must earn a minimum of EUR 100,000 and be a resident of the country to qualify. This tax benefit can be enjoyed for up to eight years. Expats should talk to their employer about applying, if they think they may qualify.