Although cryptocurrencies have been around for some years now it was only in recent years that they have exploded onto the scene with Bitcoin almost smashing through 20k a coin at the end of last year. Since then it has made a huge correction, and the optimists are looking for a rebound this year. It is no secret that the banks are shitting themselves with the rise of cryptocurrencies as they see this as a direct threat to there own balance sheets.
With the future looking up for the crypto market as there are many ICO’s and other companies wanting to use the blockchain technology you will need to get yourself a wallet before you can buy and sell any coins so take a look below at some of the top exchanges to use with pro and cons.
Coinbase is the world’s largest Bitcoin broker. They represent an easy and fast way for new users to purchase bitcoins. Coinbase supports customers in over 30 countries, including the United States, Europe (besides Germany), UK, Singapore, Canada, and Australia. Customers in the above-mentioned countries can purchase bitcoins by credit card, debit card, bank transfer, SEPA transfer, and more.
High liquidity and buying limits
An easy way for newcomers to get bitcoins
“Instant Buy” option available with a credit card or debit card
Purchases made with bank transfer can take up to 5 days to complete
Coinbase may track how and where you spend your bitcoins
Coinmama allows customers in almost every country to buy bitcoin with a credit or debit card. They charge an ~6% fee on each purchase.
If buying less than $150 worth of bitcoins, you won’t need to verify your identity. This convenience makes small purchases quick and easy.
Want to buy using Coinmama? This step-by-step guide will show you how to use Coinmama.
Works in almost all countries
Highest limits for buying bitcoins with a credit card
Reliable and trusted brokers
Some of the highest fees among credit/debit card bitcoin brokers
BitPanda is a Bitcoin broker based in Austria.
They have high payment limits and low fees across their wide range of payment methods.
BitPanda offers customers the option to buy bitcoins with credit card, debit card, SOFORT, Skrill, NETELLER, giropay, eps, SEPA, and Online Bank Transfer.
Our guide will show you how to buy bitcoins with a credit card on BitPanda.
Some of the lowest fees for buying bitcoins with credit/debit card
Reliable and trusted broker
Fees aren’t shown openly on the site but instead included in the buying price
Coinbase’s exchange, GDAX, is one of the largest Bitcoin exchanges in the United States. Users can fund their accounts via bank transfer, SEPA, or bank wire. GDAX offers good prices and low fees, but their confusing user interface may initially prove difficult to navigate.
Some of the lowest fees available for US and EU customers
Possible to buy bitcoins for 0% fees
User interface is confusing for first time buyers
Sending bitcoins directly from GDAX to any legally-questionable site may result in closure of your account
LocalBitcoins is an escrow service which also helps to match bitcoin buyers and sellers. The most common method of payment for the purchase is cash deposit. However, users may advertise trades for whichever payment method they prefer. Buying bitcoins via an in-person meeting, secured and facilitated by LocalBitcoins, may be one of the fastest and most private ways to buy bitcoins in any country.
Can be private, fast and easy
In-person trades require no personal information
Purchases of bitcoin can be made quickly via cash deposit
Beware of scams; always follow the rules! Harder to buy large amounts of bitcoins compared to large exchanges
Slightly to significantly higher prices than regular exchanges; premium for higher privacy
CoinSwitch.co is the first cryptocurrency and altcoin exchange aggregator. It has integrated many leading exchanges across the globe to provide best exchange rates to users. Currently, it supports over 100 cryptocurrencies and more than 6000 pairs to exchange.
CoinSwitch supports more than 100 cryptocurrencies and more than 4500 pairs for conversion.
They combine all altcoins available on all listed exchanges. So people don’t have to worry about which exchange supports what coins. You can compare rates of different exchanges in a very intuitive UI which always gets you the best price. They provide real-time chat support. So if you have any queries, it can be resolved on the go. Major supported cryptocurrencies It supports over 100 cryptocurrencies.
Cryptopia’s focus is on a better user experience for crypto-currencies. In order to make cryptocurrencies more accessible to everyone, they provide mining pools, marketplace, exchange services and a support framework for each coin listed. They are trying to cover multiple angles and have diversified their offering with the following sub-categories:
The Cryptopia marketplace lets you sell anything, to anyone, anywhere in the world in exchange for the cryptocurrency.
Buy/Sell items free of charge or set up an Auction or classified listing and start using your crypto today.
The Cryptopia Mineshaft is a streamlined and easy to use mining platform for cryptocurrencies.
Supports all miners from single CPU or GPU users to full-blown ASIC masters.
The Cryptopia exchange is a quick easy way to convert your crypto.
Whether it be for paying bills, buying something from the Cryptopia marketplace or you simply love to collect virtual coins.
Cryptopia’s BlockExplorers allow you to view detailed information on all transactions and blocks.
Track your crypto payment every step of the journey for your peace of mind.
Luno is a Bitcoin exchange with a presence in South Africa, Singapore, Nigeria, Malaysia and Indonesia. It offers 0% fees for market makers, meaning you can avoid fees if you place a buy order then wait for a seller to take it.
Luno also offers an Instant Buy feature.
One of the most trusted Bitcoin exchanges in Asia
Free deposits and low withdrawal fees
Low fees; 0% for market makers and only 0% – 1% for market takers (depending on fiat currency)
High to infinite limits for exchange, depending on verification level
Users should not store bitcoins in Luno’s wallet service
Limited deposit options, usually only bank transfer, and no credit/debit card options
BitSquare is a decentralized Bitcoin exchange. They facilitate trade by escrowing bitcoins of both buyer and seller, to promote the successful conclusion of trades. It offers high privacy and security, and never controls its user’s funds.
The exchange never has control of your money
Usually requires some bitcoin for escrow, so not an option for first-time buyers
Works over TOR for increased privacy
Very low 0.0008 BTC flat fee
ShapeShift lets you buy bitcoin with Litecoin, Dogecoin, altcoins and many other digital tokens. ShapeShift works in nearly every country but you will need another cryptocurrency in order to purchase bitcoins. Exchanges happen almost instantly because ShapeShift never actually controls your tokens but just exchanges them.
Easiest and fastest way to buy bitcoins with altcoins
Fees are reasonable for larger traders
Need altcoins or other digital tokens to use
HappyCoins is a Bitcoin exchange based in the Netherlands which services customers across Europe. HappyCoins accepts a wide range of payment methods, including many instant payment methods; iDEAL, Bancontact, GiroPay, myBank, Sofort and Interac. It also offers SEPA deposits for all EU residents, which take 1 to 3 days to clear.
Long-running and trusted exchange
A wide range of payment options offered
Occasional “happy hour” 0% fee periods
Quite private; only email and bank account number and name required
Fees are not displayed publically; only included in the price at checkout
Belgacoin is a Bitcoin broker based in Belgium. They accept payments via SEPA or international bank transfer. The service requires no verification or even registration, so it’s both convenient and anonymous (although bank transfers by their nature are not anonymous).
Perhaps the easiest and most private way to buy bitcoins in Europe
Established and trusted brokerage that’s been around for a long time
Private method; no registration or verification required
Low 1% trading fee
Can take up to 1 business day for order to be processed after confirmation of deposit
Hong Kong-based Bitfinex has long been one of the largest USD Bitcoin exchanges in the world. Bitfinex accounts may be funded by bank wire only, their fee on accepting such transfers is low at only 0.1%.
Very low fees even for low volume buyers; 0.1% for market makers and 0.2% for market takers
One of the best ways to buy large amounts of bitcoins
Allows lending of fiat or bitcoin to margin traders at interest (but this is risky in light of the hack)
Very deep liquidity promotes a price close to market rate
Was recently hacked and has yet to fully compensate all users for their loss
Geared towards traders; possibly quite confusing for first time buyers
Single payment option
Anycoin Direct is a Bitcoin broker based in the Netherlands which services clients across Europe. Customers can purchase bitcoin with SEPA, SOFORT, Giropay, iDEAL, Mybank, Bancontact, and TrustPay.
High limits can be achieved with time
A very wide range of payment methods
Support for numerous altcoins
Fees not directly published on the website
Requires intensive ID verification, including video chat, so not private
CryptoPay is a Bitcoin broker based in the UK. Residents of the UK can purchase bitcoins in minutes via local bank transfers. Customers from other European countries can purchase bitcoins with SEPA transfer.
The user interface is well-designed and makes the buying process simple
Offers its own wallet but this is not ideal for bitcoin storage
itBit is a global Bitcoin exchange, licensed by the New York State Department of Financial Services. It also operates a global OTC trading desk, making it easy for customers to buy large amounts (100 BTC and up) of bitcoin. It supports all US states besides Texas.
OTC trading desk is one of the best ways to buy large amounts of bitcoins
Deep liquidity promotes a price close to fair market rate
Extremely low fees; 0% for market makers and 0.2% for market takers
Fee on OTC brokering service is only 0.1%
Limited payment options
Geared towards traders; exchange interface may be confusing for first-time buyers
Requires ID verification, so not private
Bitit lets you purchase bitcoin online with a 3DS-enabled credit/debit cards or with cash via Neosurf, Flexepin (coming soon) and Cashlib vouchers, available in over 150,000 local stores across Europe.
A unique way of purchasing offers extra privacy over other methods
8% Neosurf fee is slightly better than Coinhouse’s 10%
Available in 50 countries
€10,000 initial weekly Neosurf cash payment limit
Bitcoin gift cards also available; more expensive than other options
In-person buying methods offer more privacy but can be confusing
Identity verification required for buying amounts over €25
€500 initial weekly credit/debit card limit
Cubits is a Bitcoin exchange based in the United Kingdom. It allows users in almost every country besides the United States to purchase bitcoins, using a wide range of currencies and payment methods. The payment options include SEPA, SWIFT, credit cards, OKPAY, SOFORT, Skrill, Dotpay, and online bank transfer.
Fair 0.9% trading fee
A wide range of payment methods offered
Support for 20 fiat currencies
A neat design that makes the buying process easy
Offers a wallet that should not be used to store bitcoins
Requires ID verification, so not private
Coinhouse lets you buy bitcoins in Europe with a 3-D Secure-activated Visa or Mastercard credit/debit cards, certain prepaid cards and Neosurf tickets. While their fees are somewhat high, Coinhouse does offer relatively high buying limits.
High limits make it easy to buy large amounts of bitcoins quickly
Reliable and trusted broker; run by the Bitcoin Embassy in Paris
Highest fees among those trusted exchanges which accept credit/debit cards
Intensive verification procedures
CoinCorner is a Bitcoin exchange based on the Isle of Man. They cater to users in the UK, Europe, Canada, Australia, and certain African, Asian, and South American countries. CoinCorner users may purchase bitcoins with SEPA, credit/debit card, GBP bank transfer, and now Neteller too.
Trusted and regulated company in the UK
A wide range of payment options
Good customer support
Instant credit card purchases
Supports a very wide range of countries
Video tutorials covering the basics of Bitcoin and buying and sellingMulti-sig security features
Slightly high 5% fee for buying with a credit card
1% trading fee slightly high by European standards
Offers a mobile wallet but this is not ideal for bitcoin storage
Requires ID verification, so not private
Geared towards traders; slightly confusing for first-time buyers
Founded mid-2013, Kraken is the world’s largest Euro-denominated Bitcoin exchange, based on daily average trading volume. It supports deposits from US, European, Canadian, British, and Japanese customers. Deposits can be made via bank wire, SEPA, SWIFT, and bank deposit (Japan only).
Well-financed and trusted exchange. Very low 0.25% taker fee, falling to 0.1% with sufficient trading volume. Very low maker fee, falling to 0% with sufficient trading volume
Deep liquidity for large volume buyers in European markets ensures a price close to fair market rate. Highly-rated for security. Publishes proof of reserve audits
User-interface makes it difficult for first-time buyers
Requires ID verification, so its not private
BitStamp is one of the world’s largest and most well-known Bitcoin exchanges. Deposits can be made through bank transfer, SEPA transfer, international bank wire, and now even credit cards.
One of the longest-running Bitcoin exchanges. Very low 0.25% fee, falling to 0.1% with sufficient trading volume. Good range of deposit and withdrawal options. Deep liquidity promotes a price close to fair market rate. Offers a wide range of altcoins
Bitstamp been hacked before, users should not store funds on the exchange for any period of time
High 8% fee on small credit card purchases, falling to 5% with sufficient trading volume
Geared towards traders; slightly confusing for first-time buyers
Bitrush is a Bitcoin exchange based in the Netherlands. Its customers can buy bitcoins with iDEAL, Bancontact, MyBank Visa and Mastercard.
Advanced software will purchase your Bitcoin in real-time and send them to your wallet almost instantly.
Requires ID verification; not private
BL3P is a product of Dutch Bitcoin broker Bitonic, which has been selling bitcoins since 2012. BL3P is available in all European countries. BL3P charges a fixed fee 0.25% per trade.
Trusted and established Bitcoin company
Service in all European countries
Hard to use for inexperienced buyers
Safello is a Bitcoin exchange based in Sweden and fully-registered as a financial institution. It offers a wide range of payment methods – Swish, SEPA, SWIFT, Faster Payments, Bankgiro and iDEAL – to European residents.
Available from 32 countries
Offers a wide variety of payment methods
Deep liquidity ensures prices near the fair market rate
Not a private way to buy since ID verification is required
Only Swish payments will confirm over weekends
Fees aren’t clearly stated but included in your buying price
Gatecoin is a regulated Bitcoin and altcoin exchange based in Hong Kong. They accept bank transfers from around 40 different countries. Users can buy bitcoin using HKD, EUR, USD, and CNY.
High liquidity, Several BTC-fiat currency trading pairs. Multi-sig security features
Was hacked in May of 2016; users should not store funds on the exchange if it can be avoided
LakeBTC is the fourth largest Bitcoin exchange in China. They operate internationally, in around 40 different countries. LakeBTC is one of the top 15 global exchanges based average daily trading volume. Customers can deposit via cash, bank wire, Western Union, MoneyGram, OKPay, Perfect Money, PayPal, Payza, Skrill, Neteller, Leupay, CHATS or LakePay, although not all methods are available in all countries.
A global exchange that offers many payment methods. A vast array of BTC-fiat currency trading pairs
An interface that may be hard to use for first-time buyers
Bitboat lets you buy bitcoin in the UK, Portugal, Spain, Italy, France, Belgium, Greece, Cyprus, and Romania. You can buy using Paysafecard or Neosurf, as well as further options in Italy, France, and Spain.
A wide range of payment methods offered
ID verification is required. Many of the payment methods offered to come with high fees. Tight payment limit of €5,000 per month across all payment methods
Paymium was the first European Bitcoin exchange, founded in 2011. It provides EUR/BTC exchange service and complies with all relevant European Regulations. Customers can purchase bitcoins via SEPA, wire transfer, or credit card.
Established and trusted exchange
Has a Mobile app available
ID verification required for amounts over €2,500, so not private
Cointed allows customers to buy and sell bitcoins across Europe, using SEPA, Skrill, cash, and many other payment options. They also operate 9 Bitcoin ATMs across Austria.
Many payment methods available
ID verification required, so not a private way to buy
Coinfloor is based in the United Kingdom. They operate as both a Bitcoin exchange (Coinfloor Exchange) and broker referral service (Coinfloor Market). Coinfloor’s Exchange service accepts deposits in GBP, EUR, PLN, and USD. Customers can deposit to the Market via UK bank transfers and to the exchange via bank transfer, SEPA, or SWIFT.
Trustworthy and regulated exchange
Offers a sophisticated bitcoin storage service, Coinfloor Vaults
Coinfloor Exchange has a high minimum deposit amount; must deposit at least 1,000 units of currency
Coinfloor Market only accepts GBP bank transfers
CEX.IO offers security, high liquidity, and cross-platform trading. It also offers lower fees, margin trading, almost 100% uptime, etc. It is headquartered in London, UK. It was affected by a small hack long back but has had no issues for a while. It has a large number of accounts possibly due to its beautiful interface
Protection against DDoS attacks, full data encryption, compliant with PCI DSS standards
Trading via the website, mobile app, WebSocket and REST API. FIX API for institutional traders
Providing services in 99% countries around the globe, including 24 states of USA
Bittrex is a Seattle, U.S. based and regulated exchange. It offers several trading pairs and supports more than 190 cryptocurrencies. It offers speedy transactions, high stability, and follows some risk management practices. Bittrex’s fees are .25%. Their customer support is pretty good and uses Slack, Twitter and Email.
Bittrex has a large selection (almost 200) of cryptocurrencies and altcoins. There are 3 main trading pairs used on Bittrex. They have Bitcoin (BTC) markets, Ethereum (ETH) markets, and Tether (USDT) markets.
Bittrex charges .25% commision on all transactions. This is on the higher end compared to most other exchanges
A U.S. based exchange available in all countries and states. It was recently purchased by Circle and has a great selection of cryptocurrencies. Poloniex has .15% fees for makers and .25% fees for takers.
Fees Very Low, There are 90+ Trading Pairs
Poloniex is not Beginner-Friendly,
You can deposit in Cryptocurrency and withdraw in Cryptocurrency