You are advised to have some cash (Euros) upon arrival, as exchange offices are not open 24/7. You can exchange money before leaving or upon arrival at the airport. In Tours an exchange office is located in the train station and another one at the central post office (boulevard Béranger). If you hold an international credit card, you can also withdraw money from an ATM (Distributeur Automatique de Billets or DAB).
You do not have to open a bank account and you may well choose to keep your account at home, but it will however be much easier for you to open one here in France.
Any foreigner residing for over three months in France may open a bank account to get a checkbook and/or a bank card. There are two types of bank cards:
- Basic withdrawal cards used only to withdraw money from your bank’s Automatic Teller Machines 24/7. - Withdrawal and credit cards used both to withdraw money from any ATM and to pay for your purchases in shops. Banks charge you 30€ and 40€/year.
To open a bank account, you will need to provide the following: - identification (passport, visa, residence permit); - a proof of where you live (phone or electricity bill, rent receipt); - a student card, if you are a student; - documents to show proof of your incomes; - a deposit of 20€ at least.
Banks charge all of their services, but at various rates, with different offers and options (type of bank card, online service, authorized overdrafts, and so on).