Came to Germany as a freelancer? Or want to create a company? Then you need a business bank account (Geschäftskonto) because a regular one won’t do it. But no worries, there are even free ones: Use our tool here for your individual comparison.
Even if you’re only a freelancer with a few incoming payments per month, using your free private bank account is not an option in the long-term. Banks like DKB or N26 will at some notice that your payments are for a “Rechnung” (invoice) – and will ask you to stop using the private account for such purposes.
But no worries, there are also a number of free bank accounts for freelancers in Germany (so called Geschäftskonto)– even with English support!
Find here a calculator to compare which one of them suits best for your needs. Under the calculator, I took a deeper look at 3 of them that suit best for a typical solo freelancer.
(Can’t see the table? Click this link. *)
Free accounts with Mastercard & English support
As an international freelancer, you very likely want to have a bank account with English support. And you probably want to have a free credit card to be able to make your business payments directly from your business account.
For such a situation, three account offers are optimal:
Holvi is a Finnish bank, so you will also get a Finnish IBAN number, not a German one. But that remains the only minus, the free account comes with a number of perks: a free Mastercard, an integrated software to create invoices for your customers and tracking their payments, and: you can even create an online store selling your products.
Cash withdrawals are not free, however that shouldn’t be an issue, as you can always transfer money to your free private bank account with free cash withdrawals.
Hufsy is a Danish-German bank, cooperating with Solaris Bank. They also give out a German IBAN, allowing you to send an receive payments, and insure your deposits (Einlagensicherung). A bonus compared to Holvi are up to 3 free cash withdrawals per month (more cost 1.20 EUR per withdrawal.) Very interesting is their attempt to integrate with 3rd-party servicec: For instance, you can automatically share your account data to Dropbox or Slack.
3. N26 Business
N26’s business account is very similar to their private customer’s account so you can also read (and watch) its detailed long-term review.
The business account differs mostly by the fact that it pays you 0.1% Cashback on all you Mastercard spendings. You even get free cash withdrawals at Euro ATMs.
However, there’s one minus: If you already have a private N26 account, you cannot open another business one.
|Free cash withdrawals||–||3 per month||yes, in EUR|
|Go to||Holvi*||Hufsy*||N26 Business*|
How to open an account
All of the 3 accounts above offer Video identification: So just have a computer or phone with a camera, and keep prepared:
- your ID card or passport
- your German Tax ID number (Steuer-ID)
You will then make a video call and in the process talk to an online clerk and hold your ID into the camera.
Still questions? Need help to pick the right one? Ask in the comments, usually there’s a reply
after 24 hours max.
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