Bank Accounts – Should I create an international account before coming to Gainesville?

No. There are many banks in and around UF. Creating an account is easy here. Banks are more than ready to create checking accounts for you. They are even willing to issue a credit card right away!

Bank of America and Wachovia have some good deals if you create a new account with them. ATMs for both these banks are conveniently located on campus (Reitz Union / Bookstore). I personally like BofA because they make online banking extremely convenient (no, I wasn’t paid to put this on my blog). But beware of BofA. They might try to sell you all kinds of products. Just sign up for a Checking Account and get the hell out of there! Do NOT sign up for:
– a Secured Credit Card – it’s useless, apply for a real Credit Card instead (that’ll help you build your credit history),
– a Savings Account – their interest rates are plain ridiculous. There are other banks out there that offer much better interest rates (think INGDirect and HSBCAdvance).

Finally, welcome to the world of easy credit and loads of debt!

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