Is your account in China with CITIC aka SHITTIC Bank because it is truly a SHITTY experience to deal with them. Opening an account takes 3-4 hours for foreigners. Be prepared for a long slice of sour-tasting Frustration Pie!
First, you need a tax statement from the tax bureau.
Second, a salary statement from your employer.
Third, your passport (with work/resident permit, of course), and CITIC bank ATM card.
Fourth, your stateside bank's SWIFT code, routing #, address, phone number, and a (yours?) stateside address--assume it's the "billing address" used for your bank statements.
Thinking to myself...Hmmm, I switched my address to China, so now what???
And fifth, and most importantly (!), you need a whole can of ALotOfF***ingPatience! (!)
Details forthcoming... like I said, you need a whole lot of ALotOfF***ingPatience! (!), even with this blog post!
- Finding the f***ing tax bureau
- Documents, etc.
- Exact, specific, OCD, and all other dirty little details of how/what/when to do f***ing CITIC Bank procedures/requirements/sphincter police BS.
- Passport, CITIC Bank card, Income Statement from your employer, Tax payment statement from the tax bureau
- If you have a regular account "cash account" with them, they will tell you that you must open a second account "currency account" in order to exchange and transfer money. This second account will, of course, offer a much lower exchange rate--to the tune of nearly 1 percentage point. You have no choice, other than opening an account at ICBC, where supposedly, this process is much easier and has a normal exchange rate. I will transfer a small amount and then go open an account elsewhere. Unfortunately, my employer switched from ICBC to SHITTIC, so that is where my account was opened. Oh, and opening an account will take 2-4 hours by the way. I have no idea why there is such idiocracy here in the banking system.
- Go to ICBC or Bank of China
August 30 update
I spent two hours of lunchtime at the bank and accomplished absolutely zero. I missed lunch, was late to work, and needed to pee for two hours, and left the bank with the exact same documents and nothing accomplished They must have asked me ten times, "So you want to send US Dollars to your US Bank?" After waiting nearly an hour, sitting at a teller window another hour while I was asked inane questions ("Why do you want to transfer this money?" and "What will you use the money for?"), taking pictures of me, asking the same questions over and over again ("So you want to exchange Chinese RMB for US Dollars?" "So you want to send US Dollars to your US Bank?" "So you want to send xxx dollars to your US Bank?" "So you want to exchange xxx RMB into xxx US Dollars?" "So your name is xxx?" typing god-knows-what into the computer, they told me I had to open a different account to transfer money and that the exchange rate in that account is nearly a percentage point less, so I will lose even more money.
Banking in China is a horrific, time-sucking experience. Be warned, be prepared!
Foreigners are not allowed to have savings accounts or any kind of interest-bearing accounts, or investment accounts. That sucks too, because my money will just sit there and lose value with the cost of living increase. Sigh. And for some reason, you are not allowed to have an iHerb account unless you are a citizen/permanent resident. Double sigh.