This is how you become a bank customer in Norway


To become a customer at a bank in Norway, you must present valid identification and other documentation that the bank requires. You must also be able to explain what you will use the bank services for. Here you get information about various banking services and what documentation and information the bank must have from you when you want to access banking services.

Banking services

There are many types of banking services available in Norway. What we call basic banking services are in principle available to everyone living in Norway, regardless of citizenship. Basic banking services mean a bank account, a payment card without a picture (debit card) and access to online banking. After a risk-based assessment, the bank will also be able to offer other types of services such as loans, credit cards, BankID etc.

The bank must have knowledge of the customer

The reason why the bank asks for valid identification, other types of documentation and asks what you need banking services for is that, according to the Money Laundering Act, banks have a duty to prevent the laundering of proceeds from criminal activities. This means, among other things, that the banks must acquire a good knowledge of the customer and his/her use of banking services - the "know your customer" principle.


To become a customer in a bank, you must be able to show a valid identification document. Which identification documents the banks require and accept to confirm the customer's identity will be risk-based, and depend, among other things, on which banking services the customer requests.

Valid identification can be:

  • Valid Norwegian passport
  • Valid foreign passport
  • Valid foreigner's passport
  • Valid travel document for refugees
  • Valid Norwegian national ID card
  • Valid national ID card from an EU/EEA country

National ID cards issued by an EU/EEA country can, after a risk-based assessment, be considered valid identification in certain cases.

Please note that the bank may request additional documentation related to identity before they can establish a customer relationship with you.

You must also be able to state your residential address.

Need for banking services

You must be able to explain why you need banking services and how you want to use them. It may be that you want to deposit salary or other income into an account, pay rent and bills, transfer money to others or save money. The bank can ask where the money comes from.

Bank account

There are different types of bank accounts, the most important of which are current accounts and savings accounts. Normally, for example, salary is deposited into the current account, and it is this that you deduct from when you use a payment card (see below). The savings account gives a higher interest rate than the current account, and therefore it is wise to transfer the money you do not intend to use immediately to the savings account. You can transfer money back and forth between the various accounts.

Payment card

With a payment card, you can withdraw cash from ATMs, pay for goods in shops, and it can be used for online shopping.

The banks issue different types of payment cards to their customers. The most common are debit cards where the amount you shop or withdraw cash for is deducted directly from your bank account. You will not be able to withdraw cash from the card or use it to pay if you do not have money in the account. However, it can be agreed with the bank that there should be limited credit on the account to which the payment card is linked.

There are also credit cards, which are payment cards where the bank lends money to the customer, and the customer can buy goods and services without having access to cash or debiting the account immediately.

Online banking and mobile banking

To access online banking and mobile banking, you must have a BankID or access other login methods such as a code tag etc. Through the online bank, you can, among other things, see how much money you have in your account (balance), what you have spent and received from money in your account (transaction overview), transfer money to your own or other people's accounts and pay bills.

With mobile banking, you can quickly and easily check your balance and carry out other banking services on your mobile phone or tablet.

Through the online bank, you can also enter into an agreement on AvtaleGiro and eFaktura. When using Avtalegiro, you can agree that bills from specific creditors, for example your electricity supplier, are automatically deducted from your account. Through eFaktura, you are offered to have the bills from the creditors you choose presented in the online bank.

Transfer of money to other countries

Once you have created a bank account, you can safely and securely transfer money to an account abroad. You can do this by logging into your online bank.

To send money to an account abroad, you must have:

  • Recipient's account - for Europe and some countries outside Europe, an IBAN is required. IBAN (International Bank Account Number) is an international standard for bank account numbers.
  • Recipient bank's BIC/SWIFT address. BIC stands for Bank Identifier Code and is a code that identifies a specific bank.
  • Recipient's name and address
  • Currency type you want to pay in
  • Information to the Currency Register for amounts over NOK 100,000

Note that after an assessment of each individual customer, the bank has the right to set restrictions relating to foreign transactions.


BankID is a personal electronic ID card for secure identification and signing online.
In the physical world, you identify yourself with a passport or bank card with a photo. In the online world, you can use your BankID to legitimize who you are. In the physical world, you use a pen when you sign a contract. In the electronic world, you will be able to use your BankID to sign documents and messages electronically.

With BankID, you can sign documents electronically so that you do not have to attend in person or send signed documents in the post. Below, the BankID is used for identification with the bank and the conclusion of agreements with the bank. You can use the BankID in several banks. In addition, BankID can be used when using a number of other private and public services, for example for applying for a nursery place, bidding round for the purchase of a home, registration of documents and more.

To get a BankID, you must be 15 years or older. BankID can still be issued to persons between the ages of 13 and 15, provided that there is parental consent. However, some banks have chosen not to issue BankIDs to people under the age of 18.


The digital payment service Vipps is a service where you can transfer money easily via your smartphone, instead of through the online bank or at a bank office. A link is made between the account and the mobile number, so that you can pay to the recipient's phone number instead of the account number. Payment is made via the Vipps mobile app.

You must have established a customer relationship with a bank before you can use Vipps and you must be approved, registered and have your identity verified before you become a customer. You must be over 15 years old. Certain amount limits for use also apply.

Please note this about payment cards with photo and BankID

BankID and payment cards with a picture are typical services where the banks set stricter requirements for the identification documents than when offering basic banking services. To get a BankID, e.g. as a general rule, you present a valid Norwegian passport, documents equivalent to a Norwegian passport, or a foreign passport.

In certain cases, the bank may refuse you banking services

The bank can refuse you banking services if:

  • You cannot identify yourself with valid identification, and otherwise do not present other documentation required by the bank.
  • The bank believes that you do not provide sufficient information about why you want to open a bank account and get other banking services.
  • The bank breaks the law or regulations by offering you banking services.
  • The bank can also refuse to provide you with banking services if you have previously acted dishonestly towards the bank.
Prepare for a meeting with your bank:
  • Consider what kind of documents you must bring with you/send to the bank.
  • You must be able to speak to those who work at the bank yourself, or with the help of an interpreter.
  • The bank will ask you where your money comes from and what you will use the bank services for.