Savings Account for Multicultural Families in Korea

Last December when I did my annual tradition of throwing away old and useless stuff before the new year, I realized that I accumulated a lot of unused cosmetics. I stored them in a box due to the lack of space in my drawer but I forgot that they were there. The sad thing was that they already reached the expiration date but I had never used them. What a waste of money!
One of my new year’s resolutions for 2014 is to spend less and to keep more of my monthly allowance in the bank. Anyway all my basic needs are already included in our budget for our monthly living expenses. I’m so glad that Korean banks offer up to 7.5% interest rates for multicultural families (foreign spouse of Korean national). However the maximum monthly deposit is quite low. So I decided to open time deposit accounts in several banks that offer high interest rates to increase my personal savings. To those who are interested, here is the list of the banks that offer 5.0 – 7.50% interest rates. 🙂


1. Woori Bank  (우리은행) –For foreign wives 

  • Savings Plan: Woori Hope Dream Savings (우리 희망드림적금: Woori hee mang deu reem jeok keum)
  • Maximum monthly deposit – 300,000 won
  • Term: 1 year
  • Interest rate: 7.5 %
untitled22. Kookmin Bank (국민은행) –For foreign wives
  • Savings Plan: Kookmin Happy Savings (국민행복적금: Kookmin haeng bok jeok keum)
  • Maximum monthly deposit – 500,000 won
  • Term: 1 year
  • Interest rate: 7.5 %

3.  IBK Bank (기업은행) – For foreign wives

  • Savings Plan: (신서민섬김: shin seo min seom kim)
  • Maximum monthly deposit – 500,000 won
  • Term: 1 year
  • Interest rate: 7.0 %

4.  KEB Bank (외환은행)- For foreign wives and husbands 

  • Savings Plan: 1004 Sharing (1004 나눔: cheon sa na noom)
  • Maximum monthly deposit – 300,000 won
  • Term: 1 -3 years
  • Interest rate: 5.0 – 6.0 % (depending on the term you choose)

5. Shinhan Bank (신한은행)- For foreign wives

  • Savings Plan: Shinhan New Hope Savings (신한 새희망적금: shin han sae hee mang jeok keum)
  • Maximum monthly deposit – 200,000 won
  • Term: 3 years
  • Interest rate: 6.0%

This past few days I spent my mornings visiting banks and opening new accounts. Applying for bank accounts in Korea is so fast and easy. To open time deposit accounts like the ones stated above, just prepare your ID (신분증).  It can be either alien registration card or Korean citizen  ID. You also have to present your family certificate (가족증명서) to prove that you are married to a Korean.

When you enter the bank, get a number and wait for your turn. Tell the teller that you want to open a time deposit account by saying “Jeok keum tongjangeul mandeulleo wasseoyo” (적금 통장을 만들러 왔어요). Then the teller will ask you what kind of time deposit account you want to make. Just tell the name of the savings plan as stated in the list above. Then you will be asked to show your ID card and family certificate. You will be given an application form to fill out. The teller will highlight the parts that you have to write like: name, ID (ARC or citizen) number, phone number, address and signature. You will be asked whether you want to use dojang (Korean personal stamp) or just a signature. The teller will then input the data on the computer. Give your initial deposit and you’ll get your new passbook right away. The process normally takes around 10-15 minutes depending on your writing speed. Hehe! To show you a sample, here’s a photo of my newly opened time deposit account with 7.50% interest rate from Woori Bank.


To all foreign spouses of Korean nationals, grab this chance to grow your savings! Aja aja fighting! God bless Korea! 🙂

*Make sure you know the name of the savings plan because some tellers don’t know about this option for foreigners. Actually when I applied for the first time, the teller told me that there’s no such savings account for multicultural families. So, I asked her to search in her computer. I told her about the qualifications and required documents for this kind of savings plan. Then finally she found it and asked me how I knew about it. Hahaha!

PS: The interest rates were as of February 2014. There may be changes in the interest rates. Please contact your bank. 


49 thoughts on “Savings Account for Multicultural Families in Korea

  1. At KEB, they also let me open a 1004 account in my baby sons name. I showed Family registry, and needed a stamp in lieu of a signature. So I think you could do an account for every family member.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. But i have my savings acct in KB….. and i rarely 100kwon thats a monthly minimum only actually i always deposit 250~500kwon monthly and it has said only 1.% per year how calm this is unfair, s their any possibility (to change) if i follow up it again?


    • You can terminate your regular savings account and apply for several time deposit accounts with higher interest rates mentioned in the post. Please note that you can only apply for one account per bank. So you have to open several accounts in different banks if you have a bigger amount to keep. 🙂


  3. I just wanted to thank you for all your posts! Your blog is full of information and so, so helpful! I’m trying to save money with Korean banks now that I’ve moved (and married) here, but like you said, often the bank employes aren’t that well informed for multicultural families. I’ll go and open a whole bunch of accounts over the next few weeks hehe~


  4. Do they offer this CD if the huband is the foreigner? My wife went to KB bank and they said we couldn’t open a muti cultural family CD because I (the husband ) was not Korean.


  5. Tnx madam sa info…hinanap ko ulit itong blog mo. Salamat ng marami. Im on my way to woori bank…hehehe.
    ay need pa pla ng kajuk jeongmyonso kaya dongsamuso pala muna. Salamat tlg pretty lanie


  6. To be clear, you’re not getting the 7.5% on the full amount that you save because you’re limited to depositing W 300,000 per month. For example, if you max out the Woori savings account, after 12 months you will have deposited W3.6 mil. Total interest will be W 146,250 which ends up being 4.06% interest on W 3.6 mil. Still better than anything else you’re going to get. Just didn’t want people to think they’d end up with 7.5% interest on the total amount they deposit over a year (which would be W 270,000).


    • It does not apply to foreign husbands. KEB and Woori will let you open the accounts the other three are foreign wives only. I wasted about three hours in those banks figuring that out. Not really fair play and the tellers are pretty clueless.


  7. Hi. Thank you so much! I am trying to learn about Korean money matters. Quick question. If I have an account with that bank already, can I still open the Time Deposit Account? Or is it only for first-time people?


    • Hi Michelle. Yes, you can. But you can open only one Time Deposit Account per kind. There are many kinds of Time Deposit Accounts with different benefits and terms in one bank. 🙂


  8. Hi pi ask ko kbg pi pno po pg di nkapghulog ng 2 bwan .mbabawasan pi b interest?kc 1 year ang kinuha ko s ibk.di ko nhulugan numg april at may.ano po mngyayari
    ?please reply last march 2014 ako ngaaply ble this marxh n mtatapos kso diko nhulugan ng april at may ano po kya mngyayari?


  9. So I checked up on these. People should be aware that outside of the Woori and KEB accounts, these apply to ONLY nonkorean women married to korean men. Not the other way around.


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