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Sim Cards and Banking

How to Purchase a SIM Card

Once in the U.S, Students may get a temporary SIM card and a U.S phone number. All they need to do is bring an UNLOCKED phone, and go to one of the US phone providers (AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile, etc.)


How to Open a Bank Account in the U.S

AWA encourages Students to open a bank account once in the U.S, as it is safer to receive direct deposits, instead of carrying paychecks. Students should ask their Host Employer for assistance once in the U.S. Students are welcome to do their own research, as there are plenty of different banks in the U.S. As most of them are familiar with the J-1 program, Students should not hesitate to communicate with their chosen bank’s representative.

Major US Banks:

  • JP Morgan Chase

  • U.S. Bank

  • Bank of America

  • PNC Bank

  • Wells Fargo

You can apply online for a checking account if you’re 18 years or older. You’ll need the following information:

  • Your Social Security number.

  • A valid, government-issued photo ID like a driver’s license, passport or state or military ID.

  • A minimum opening deposit of $25 to activate your account (once you’ve been approved). This can be paid with a credit, debit or prepaid card, a transfer from another U.S. Bank account or a transfer from another financial institution.

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