Banks offer many types of financial services. These include checking and saving accounts, foreign currency conversion, money orders, credit cards, loans, wire transfers, bank drafts, traveler’s checks, and safe-deposit boxes for valuables. There are many banks in the Portland metropolitan area. Look in the telephone directory for the location of a bank close to you or to PCC. All banks offer similar services, yet have differences in such areas as interest rates and fees.. You may wish to call or visit banks to find out the differences before choosing your bank. To open a checking or saving account, you will need to present your passport and at least one other piece of identification. You will also need to deposit cash, a bank draft, a cashier’s check, or traveler’s checks payable in U.S. dollars into your account.
A checking account is a great choice rather than always carrying cash. It provides a way to pay your bills and make purchases. After you open an account, you will be given numbered checks imprinted with your name and address. A checkbook includes a set of checks and a register to record deposits and the checks that you write. Many banks also issue a debit card that looks like a Visa or MasterCard credit card. Instead of writing a check, you can use your debit card. The money is immediately taken out of your checking account. If you write a check or use your debit card and you do not have money in your account to pay for the withdrawal, your bank will charge you a fee for “insufficient funds”. Businesses will also charge you fees for bad checks. Be sure to keep track of all your purchases to prevent this from happening.
A savings account is an account that lets you earn interest on your money. A savings account is a good place to keep most of your money. It is often very easy to transfer money from your savings to your checking account. You can transfer money at the bank, by phone, or on-line.
Automatic Teller Machines
Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) provide limited services (withdrawal, deposits, and balance information) and are located at your bank and in many places such as grocery stores, gas stations, and shopping areas. Your bank will give you an ATM card with a “personal identification number” (PIN). Memorize this number and do not carry it with you or tell it to anyone. It provides access to your account. Charges for this service vary from bank to bank. Some ATMs charge a fee for using them. If you need assistance in opening a bank account, please contact the Office of International Education at 971-722-7117.