Best Salary Bank Accounts of 2023 in UAE

UAE's premier salary accounts: maximizing earnings, minimizing hassles.

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Are you tired of the endless search for the perfect bank account to deposit your hard-earned monthly salary? Look no further! We’ve got the ultimate guide to the Best Salary Bank Accounts of 2023 in UAE, brought to you by FZBuddy.

Selecting the ideal account can seem difficult in a financial environment where huge players like Emirates NBD and Mashreq Bank dominate. Whether you’re an ex-pat possessing a residence visa or a resident, this guide will guide your journey through the labyrinthine array of current accounts, digital banking services—everything evolving in complexity, and even offshore bank options—often overlooked yet potentially advantageous alternatives.

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We will explore every aspect, from the minimum balance requirements to perks such as Salaam Points. With online banking facilities ascending in popularity, physical bank branches no longer bind you—a liberating shift.

With mobile banking, managing your finances becomes effortless, making domestic remittances a breeze. Let’s delve into Abu Dhabi’s banking world, explore its key features, and set you—the aspiring financier—on course to achieve your financial goals.

Read more: Top 10 Banks in UAE of 2023

List of Best Salary Bank Accounts

Navigating the UAE‘s banking sector can present a daunting task, particularly regarding selecting an optimal salary bank account that suits your needs. This is even more challenging for startup businesses in the UAE. However, based on our thorough research–and further enforced by a comprehensive review from Bank by Choice——we have curated a list of top-notch options for you.

1. Emirates NBD

  • Minimum Balance Requirement: None
  • Credit Cards: Available
  • Debit Card: Free
  • Online Banking: Robust platform

Key Features: Emirates NBD offers an expansive array of financial products, including savings accounts, mutual funds, etc. They present a top-tier online banking experience that includes a mobile banking portal. Offering competitive interest rates paired with no minimum balance fees, Emirates NBD is a popular choice for locals and expats alike.

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2. Mashreq Bank

  • Minimum Deposits: AED 3000
  • Salary Certificate: Required
  • Current Accounts: Available
  • Monthly Salary: AED 5000 minimum

Key Features: Renowned for its extensive banking services, Mashreq Bank covers all bases, from internet banking—a convenient option in this digital age—to a user-friendly mobile app. Moreover, the bank offers priority banking, a special service for those who maintain a higher monthly wage. The additional requirements demand: employment status verification; and adherence to minimum income criteria.

3. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB)

  • Minimum Balance: AED 1000
  • Residence Visa: Required
  • Domestic Remittances: Available
  • Salaam Points: Loyalty program

Key Features: ADIB specializes in Islamic banking and offers unique features, including digital and phone banking facilities. They also provide various financial products, like offshore accounts and personal accounts. The bank has a daily closing balance requirement and charges an annual fee for certain services.

4. ICICI Bank

  • Monthly Statements: Available
  • Online Application: Supported
  • Currency Accounts: Multiple options
  • Business Loans: Offered

Key Features: ICICI Bank is known for its versatility in financial services. From business loans to currency accounts, the bank offers many options. They also provide an interest-free loan facility under certain conditions.

5. HDFC Bank

  • Monthly Charge: Applicable for specific accounts
  • Proof of Income: Required
  • Network of Branches: Extensive
  • HSBC UAE: Partnership for global access

Key Features: HDFC Bank offers a range of banking benefits, including attractive interest rates and an extensive network of branches. They also provide additional proof requirements, like permanent address proof and an employment visa, for account opening.

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6. Liv Bank

  • Details on Bank Page: Transparent
  • Inactive Bank: Account dormancy policies
  • Liv Free Bank Account: Special account type
  • Mobile Banking: Integrated Services

Key Features: Liv Bank is a digital-first bank focusing on a seamless online experience. They offer various bank accounts, including the Liv Free Bank Account, with minimal monthly balance requirements.

7. Federal Bank

  • Banking Details: Clear and concise
  • Banking Experience: User-friendly
  • Benefits of Banking: Multiple
  • Islamic Banking: Available

Key Features: The Federal Bank offers a balanced approach to banking, providing both conventional and Islamic banking options. They have a clear and concise banking details page and offer a range of benefits, including phone banking facilities and priority banking.

Considering these options and their unique features, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your financial goals and employment status. Whether you’re in the private sector or exploring business bank options, this guide aims to simplify your search.

Don’t miss this: Best Zero Balance Business Bank Accounts of 2023 in UAE

Pros of Having a Salary Bank Account

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Without a bank account, modern life is difficult. A salary bank account consolidates and secures your money for bill payments, savings, and budgeting. Salary bank accounts have benefits beyond getting your paycheck. This account type offers several benefits to simplify your life and improve your financial well-being, from financial stability to online banking. Consider these five benefits of a salary bank account.

  1. Financial Stability: One of the most significant advantages of having a salary bank account is its financial stability. Your salary is directly deposited into your account each month, providing a secure and reliable payment method. This direct deposit system eliminates the risk of lost or stolen checks and ensures that your funds are available as soon as they are transferred.
  2. Online Banking Facilities: In today’s digital age, the convenience of online banking cannot be overstated. Salary accounts often come with robust online banking portals, allowing you to manage your finances from the comfort of your home or while on the go. Features such as fund transfers, bill payments, and online shopping become incredibly straightforward. Some banks even offer a comprehensive mobile banking app, enhancing your online experience.
  3. Credit Facilities: A salary account can be a stepping stone to building a strong credit history. Banks are more likely to offer customers credit cards and personal loans with stable income flowing into their accounts. A good credit history is crucial for financial planning, buying a house, a car, or even smaller loans.
  4. Savings and Investment Options: Salary accounts often offer the option to open linked savings accounts or mutual funds. This feature makes it easier to allocate a portion of your monthly income towards savings or investments, aiding in long-term financial planning.
  5. Additional Perks: Many banks offer additional perks like cashback credit cards, loyalty programs, and even Islamic banking options for those interested. These benefits add value to your banking experience and can be tailored to suit your lifestyle needs.

Cons of Having a Salary Bank Account

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Salary bank accounts might simplify your finances, but they can have drawbacks. Salary accounts, especially UAE ones, are not a one-size-fits-all answer due to minimum balance requirements and international transaction issues. These accounts have limitations that may make them unsuitable for expatriates, freelancers, and frequent travelers. The top five drawbacks of a salary bank account should be considered before selecting one.

  1. Minimum Balance Requirement: The minimum balance requirement that some banks impose is one of the drawbacks of having a salary account. Failure to maintain this balance can accumulate fees over time if not addressed. This aspect can be particularly burdensome for those who live paycheck-to-paycheck.
  2. Limited International Banks: While the UAE has a plethora of local and regional banks, the options for international banks offering salary accounts are relatively limited. This limitation can be a drawback for expatriates or those with financial commitments in other countries.
  3. Currency and Overseas Charges: UAE salary accounts may not offer the best rates for foreign currency transactions if you’re an expatriate or travel frequently. Additionally, international remittances and ATM withdrawals can come with hefty fees.
  4. Employment Status Constraints: Some banks require proof of stable employment or a minimum income to open a salary account. These requirements can be restrictive for freelancers, part-time workers, or those between jobs.
  5. Complexity in Features: While having a range of features and benefits can be advantageous, it can also make the account structure complex. Understanding the terms and conditions, especially concerning credit facilities and additional perks, can be challenging and time-consuming.

Also read: 5 Best Financial Advisors in UAE For 2023

How to Open a Salary Bank Account in the UAE

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Starting a UAE salary bank account might be a thrilling way to gain financial independence. The process can be confusing if you don’t know the local banking laws. To avoid difficulty, expatriates starting their first employment in the UAE and locals switching banks must grasp the process. This article takes you through opening a salary bank account, from picking a bank to activating it. Follow these steps to master UAE banking.

Step 1: Choose the Right Bank

The first step is to decide which bank best suits your needs. Consider factors such as minimum balance requirements, online banking facilities, and additional perks like credit cards or loyalty programs. Research online, read reviews, and consult with colleagues or friends with local bank experience.

Step 2: Visit the Bank or Website

Once you’ve made your choice, you have two options: physically go to the bank’s nearest branch or visit their official website. Many banks in the UAE offer the convenience of online applications, but some might require an in-person visit for identity verification.

Step 3: Gather Required Documents

Before you start the application process, ensure you have all the necessary documents. These usually include:

  • An original passport (and copies)
  • Proof of address (utility bill or rental agreement)
  • Salary certificate from your employer
  • Residence visa (if applicable)

Step 4: Fill Out the Application Form

You’ll need to complete an application form, whether online or in person. This form will ask for details like your name, address, employment information, and possibly even references. Double-check all the information to ensure it’s accurate before submitting.

Step 5: Submit Documents and Application

If you’re applying online, you’ll likely need to upload scanned copies of your documents. If you’re at a physical branch, a bank representative will take your documents for verification. Some banks also require an initial deposit or a minimum salary transfer at this stage.

Step 6: Account Verification and Activation

After submitting your application and documents, the bank will take some time to verify your information. This could take anywhere from a few hours to a couple of days. Once verified, your account will be activated, and you’ll receive your account number, debit card, and other account details.

Read also: Best Digital Business Banking Accounts of 2023 in UAE


Choosing the right salary bank account is crucial for financial planning and achieving your goals. Make sure to consider all the pros and cons before making a decision.

For more details and to understand your legal obligations or rights as an account holder, you can visit UAE’s official website.


FZBuddy aims to provide accurate and reliable information as you navigate the UAE Freezone space. As such, our writers refer to primary information sources in supporting each article appearing on this website. These include, but are not limited to, published news articles, government portals, research papers, and more.

  1. Banks in UAE Account (The National News, 2023)
  2. Why People Are Flocking to High-Interest Savings Accounts (The National News, 2023)
  3. Home | The Official Portal of the UAE

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