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I am planning a trip to the USA, for which I will need spending money. I have a brokerage account that is denominated in U.S. dollars and I would like, if possible, to use the proceeds from this so that I won't have to pay currency conversion fees. To do that I would have to withdraw the money to an account denominated in dollars. I am a UK citizen permanently resident in the UK and already hold a UK bank account denominated in sterling. Would a British bank allow me to open another account, held in the UK but denominated in U.S. dollars, and if so, which ones?

There are plenty of questions about opening a bank account with a bank in the U.S.. I don't want to do that, as it appears that generally one has to physically present at the bank in question to open an account. I am asking about opening an account with a British bank, but denominated in a currency other than sterling.

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    Have you asked your bank? – phoog May 21 '17 at 15:47
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    Of course they will. I have been doing it for years, $, £, and RUB. Just ring them up and have them send you the forms. Vaguely relevant travel.stackexchange.com/questions/51849/… – Gayot Fow May 21 '17 at 16:14
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about personal finance, not travel. – David Richerby May 21 '17 at 17:12
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    Even PayPal lets you set up multiple accounts in different currencies! UK banks certainly can do the same. – alephzero May 21 '17 at 17:41
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    @DavidRicherby it's about planning for a trip abroad, and without that context, the Personal Finance stackexchange might well answer the question but without considering any pitfalls inherent in doing so - such as "Yes, but there's still a charge for using the currency in a country other than that which it's held" - just off the top of my head for a detail that would qualify as a travel-related problem. – Tom W May 21 '17 at 18:08
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Most banks will open an account in a major currency, however for travel purposes you're better off with getting an account in a "virtual" bank, such as Revolut. You apply online, receive a card through the mail and then convert your money to USD using interbank rates or directly top-up USD - either through an existing bank card or via wire transfer. No fees, no charges - unlike what you will usually see with UK banks when attempting to spend your money abroad.

Revolut is technically a British bank, so the answer is yes - it's possible.

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    Except that the OP already has USD - it's just that they are currently in a brokerage account, and he wants them in a current account. Will Revolut accept payment in USD? – Martin Bonner May 22 '17 at 6:48
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    @MartinBonner yes, they accept both card payments and bank transfers in USD. – JonathanReez May 22 '17 at 7:08
  • Wikipedia tells me it's only fee-free up to 200 Euros/GBP per month. – gerrit Jul 26 '17 at 13:18
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Yes absolutely, but there might be restrictions.

For example Lloyd's Bank International will set up a current account (checking account) in Pounds, Euros or USD. I believe there may be restrictions on who can apply, but you would have to ask the bank.

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    Worth noting that many banks will charge you for non-GBP accounts even if you qualify for fee-free GBP accounts. – Aleks G May 21 '17 at 21:03
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    Well if it's a British Bank it would be a chequing account :P – Clonkex May 21 '17 at 23:45
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    @Clonkex: um, no, the point is that in Britan it's called a "current account", and the poster helpfully added the American equivalent, which is "checking account". It's not called a "chequing account" anywhere. – Brian Chandler May 22 '17 at 6:42
  • @BrianChandler Huh, well I stand corrected. I'm Australian so I was just going on the spelling (as in, if it were called a chequing account in Britain it would be spelled that way). I'm not sure what it would be called here; I would assume the British name but I've never heard it before (though that could just be my ignorance :P ). – Clonkex May 22 '17 at 6:59
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    @BrianChandler In Canada it's called a chequing account. – Ari Brodsky May 22 '17 at 12:25

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