Moving to France

(George) #1

Hello there. Currently i am leaving in Uk. I am planning to move to France and work there. My question is, could i use my Monzo card, so i can receive the payment from the french employer? If not, what should i do?
Thank you.

(Benjamin Doherty) #2

No do not use your monzo card. It would cost you a fortune in fees.

Instead open a french bank account once you get settled there?


Depends how he uses it. POS payments are still free, so the only issue would be if he needs a lot of cash.

To answer the original question, you wouldn’t be able to get paid until Monzo implements SEPA payments, and even then they’d have a British IBAN and given we’re talking about France a lot of systems would reject it (breaking a bunch of EU directives). Sadly this affects pretty much all the Monzo alternatives as well like N26 or Monese.

French bank accounts are awful (no Fintech there yet) so I understand the desire to use Monzo (I’d do the same to be honest). Maybe look into Transferwise Borderless accounts to receive your pay (not sure which IBAN they give you, ideally you’d want a French one beginning with FR for everything to work) and then transfer it out to your Monzo.

However once you sort out the pay issue your debit card should work as normal - MasterCard acceptance is excellent in France.


Just to add that Monzo currently requires you to be a UK resident in order to have an account.

If you intend to live in France for a while, I’d definitely recommend getting a French bank account (or at least one denominated in Euro), if only to avoid all the currency conversion (I’d expect the GBP to remain somewhat volatile for the next year or two). Personally I’d not use a non FSCS protected account to hold any larger amounts of cash, which as far I know rules out the likes of transferwise borderless, or revolut, so personally I’d open a French account.


Just to add that Monzo currently requires you to be a UK resident in order to have an account.

But Monzo does not even have to know you moved out, so just keep your last address UK address on file and the card and account will work just fine. :wink:


Well, that might bite you at some stage. I happen to think it’s usually a good thing to abide by the T&C of a company I’m dealing with, and particularly so, if they hold my money :slight_smile: but, yes, you could do that, but i wouldn’t recommend it…

(Valeri) #7

Ughm… With N26 you can open quickly an EUR account once you are settled and have address and french mobile number, right…? They even support ApplePay in France :wink: :fr: :iphone:

That said, I guess the IBAN will be German, so heads-up if you go down that route:


European Law prevents IBAN discrimination so it SHOULD not make any difference if you are in France and have a German, Dutch, Irish, etc IBAN. In Netherlands and Germany there is an email helpdesk and phone hotline to report companies who are violating this Law. It may be that there is a similar reporting service in France.

(Valeri) #9

You can find a list with all relevant agencies here:

(which I took out of n26’s IBAN article)


« Should » is the keyword here. France is a backwards country when it comes to technology compared to the UK so good luck getting major companies (insurance, ISPs, utilities, etc) to upgrade their rust to accept foreign IBANs. This will be even more difficult than the sort code acceptance situation in the UK as there is no French equivalent of BACS to chase non-compliant companies.

(Kev) #11

I would have a look at Bunq. They are a European fintech bank with interesting ideas. I really like the idea they have with 25 account numbers (IBANs) so you can completely seperate bills/money etc (though that is a paid option). Yes it is a Dutch bank, but there shouldn’t be an issue with a French company accepting it now.

(Robert Shaw) #12

Revolut is now available to French residents. The only issue for me is that they don’t do direct debits at the moment. But you can have your salary paid in in € and change it to £ or other currencies without fees or commission. N26 looks good but I haven’t tried it and there are fees so it costs. My experience with French bank accounts echoes the point made above - don’t do it if you can avoid it. They charge fees simply to have a basic current account with a debit card - I was paying over €6 a month just for that! They are also not great about the level of service they provide, although the iPhone app with my account was rather groovy! Fineco is another online- and app-only bank with cards and accounts denominated in € and £ and $. Their processes are quite slow but they have SEPA direct debits too. Good luck, anyway.