Bank account necessary?
Hello! Trusting everyone had a wondeful, tropical Thanksgiving, without one soul shoveling snow!! I will be relocating to USVI in January and I have a question about whether a bank account is necessary. I have direct deposit/withdrawal for all my finances. Is it possible to exist just using a debit card and credit card? Do employers use direct deposit there, and if so, does the bank need to be "local"? When I need cash, are there ATMs there from which to withdraw currency? Thanks for the help, and I look so forward to being there!! 🙂 Serenelady
I do not live in STX, but have visited. Not sure which island your going to but on STX there were many atm's. And the major employers will do direct deposit so it depends on where you are going to work. I used my debit card for most purchases, but I make some purchases with cash. It seemed like cash was the preferred method of payment to some places I visited.
You do not have to have a' local' bank - you can mail checks to your stateside account if the employer does not do direct deposit - most do not in my experience - it is worth having your local VI address printed on your checks for use here - the local bank that your paycheck is drawn on will also cash that paycheck for you in person in almost all circumstances. You will find that there are services and businesses that do not take credit cards and that cash is used more commonly here than many stateside communities.
I've lived here 2 years and still have my stateside account. I have direct deposit and the plan that I have with my bank refunds all ATM fees; issues you may run into would be accepting local checks or the convenience of being able to go to your local bank if you lose your cards...but I haven't had many issues.
I had to get an account here because, as a server, most of my income is cash. While making purchases (ie groceries) cash is great, when paying the bills, not so much. I still have my stateside account (with a credit union I have been a member of since I was 10) and do mail the occasional paycheck I get that is more than a dollar to that account. I have heard people do the most complaining about Banko Popular and the least about First Bank. I am with Scotia. I like them well enough. The only difficulty I've had is sometimes Scotiabank is considered a foreign bank.