Beyond Coinbase: 8 Other Ways to Buy Bitcoin

 Beyond Coinbase: 8 Other Ways to Buy Bitcoin

When Elon Musk provides #Bitcoin to his Twitter bio, shopping for bitcoin is in vogue once more. 

The cryptocurrency is pumping, maybe not-too-coincidentally, as investing app Robinhood faces criticism for censoring inventory and crypto buying and selling in response to the Wall Road Bets saga. 

With Robinhood taking warmth, Coinbase is basking within the glow.

Coinbase’s recognition has climbed to its highest point since 2017, and it’s now the ninth-most downloaded utility on Apple’s (AAPL) U.S. app retailer as nicely.

The centralized trade is among the oldest within the sport and has traditionally been the U.S.’ go-to choice for purchasing bitcoin and its cohort of altcoins. As a result of shopping for on Coinbase is easy and it’s been round for therefore many market cycles, the service has sturdy model recognition and community results, making it a routine referral to newcomers trying to purchase bitcoin. 

As evidenced by the inflow of recent customers, Coinbase is fairly in style. However quite a bit has modified since Bitcoin’s final market craze, and there are many choices for first-timers to purchase their first bitcoin in addition to Coinbase, a few of which provide decrease charges as well.

Keep in mind, all exchanges are prone to outages when volumes spike. None of those exchanges are essentially any higher than Coinbase. That is only a sampling of some different choices.

US-based bitcoin-only brokers

Beneath are venues to purchase bitcoin which can be unique to the U.S. and which provide bitcoin shopping for and promoting solely. Their charges are akin to or decrease than Coinbase’s personal they usually usually have higher uptime, even in occasions of excessive market volatility. 

These platforms act as brokers, shopping for and promoting bitcoin for his or her shoppers, as a substitute of true exchanges the place customers can commerce with one another.

Money App

For U.S. customers, Sq.’s (SQ) Cash App might be the simplest and quickest place to purchase bitcoin. You may hook up your checking account, which might take a couple of days to onboard, or use your debit card, which can be utilized to start out shopping for bitcoin immediately. 

Obtainable on cellular and internet, Money App permits you to buy as much as $100,000 per week in bitcoin, in addition to withdraw $2,000 on daily basis and $5,000 every week.

Money App additionally affords automated recurring buys and has a debit card which provides holders bitcoin-back rewards. Buying charges differ from roughly 1%-3% relying on the order measurement (the bigger the order, the cheaper the charge). Money App doesn’t tack on a charge to withdraw.

Learn extra: Bitcoin Buying and selling Charges on PayPal, Robinhood, Money App and Coinbase: What to Know

River Monetary

U.S.-exclusive River Financial is a comparatively new, bitcoin-only dealer that focuses on bringing a full suite of bitcoin-related consumer providers to their clients. It’s not as straightforward as downloading Money App, however River’s monetary suite affords a lot of providers that make it a standout amongst bitcoin exchanges.

River permits, as an illustration, Lightning Community deposits and withdrawals, which implies you possibly can deposit or take your bitcoin out of River immediately for zero (or close to zero) community prices. You may also combine your {hardware} pockets(s), which lets you observe the bitcoin you retain in chilly storage in your River account. Like Money App, you possibly can set auto-recurring bitcoin buys. 

River is constructed for bigger purchases, because the minimal purchase is $100, and it solely permits for purchases utilizing a U.S. checking account. River doesn’t have a withdrawal charge and it prices anyplace from 1%-3% for buys, relying on measurement.

Swan Bitcoin

Swan Bitcoin just isn’t your conventional bitcoin on ramp. 

The bitcoin-only service has change into in style amongst bitcoiners as a result of it permits its customers to set day by day recurring auto-buys to as little as $10. Swan customers can even designate a pockets for auto-withdrawals. It’s designed for bitcoiners who wish to set a day by day or weekly common purchase, and it affords a few of (if not the) lowest charges for spot bitcoin purchases within the U.S.

Weekly purchases of $50 or extra are topic to a 1.19% fee, until the customer prepays their charges by means of an annual financial savings plan, by which case charges are 0.99%. Swan doesn’t cost withdrawal charges and solely hyperlinks to a checking account.

Worldwide Bitcoin Exchanges

Whether or not you might be inside or exterior the U.S., listed below are a couple of centralized exchanges that service a global clientele. 

Every trade featured under affords a cellular app (for Android and iOS) to handle your account on the go and permits fiat foreign money deposits by means of financial institution switch or credit score/debit playing cards. In addition they have Bitcoin’s Lightning Community enabled (or plan to take action within the close to future), that means shoppers can use this community to keep away from excessive on-chain charges when withdrawing to self-custody.

Buying and selling charges on these bitcoin trade platforms are decrease than these of Coinbase and different brokers, normally roughly 0.1%-0.5% per commerce. However the expertise of shopping for bitcoin might not be as straightforward for newcomers as a result of these exchanges, which embrace a great deal of altcoins, are actually arrange as buying and selling venues earlier than anything. Consequently, these unaccustomed to cryptocurrency trade layouts could discover them more difficult to navigate than different choices.


A global trade that is among the oldest within the trade, Bitfinex helps buying and selling in U.S. {dollars}, euros, British kilos, Japanese yens, China’s yuan and all main stablecoins. 

As a plus for energy customers, Bitfinex additionally affords deposits and withdrawals utilizing Bitcoin’s Lightning Community and Blockstream’s Liquid sidechain. 

Bitfinex’s withdrawal charges for bitcoin are static at 0.0004 BTC.


Kraken is among the oldest U.S.-based exchanges and affords each spot buying and selling for bitcoin and altcoins in addition to leveraged buying and selling. The trade helps deposits in USD, EUR, CAD, AUD, GBP, CHF, JPY and main stablecoins.

Withdrawal charges for bitcoin are set at 0.0005 BTC.

Kraken Change instructed CoinDesk on the finish of 2020 that it plans to combine the Bitcoin Lightning Community for deposits and withdrawals this yr. 


OKCoin is a global trade that accepts USD, EUR and Singapore greenback (SGD) deposits and main stablecoins. The trade is within the strategy of integrating the Lightning Community, which ought to go dwell in February.

As with different exchanges proper now, OKCoin’s Bitcoin withdrawal charges are 0.0004 BTC.

Decentralized Bitcoin Exchanges

These bitcoin exchanges don’t require know-your-customer (KYC) identification verification and permit customers to commerce straight with one another with out relinquishing their personal keys to a 3rd social gathering (not like the centralized exchanges explored above). Since you by no means relinquish your personal keys to the trade, no third social gathering can freeze your funds on these providers. 

Non-KYC exchanges enable clients to purchase bitcoin underneath the radar such that they don’t reveal delicate private data to a 3rd social gathering. As evidenced within the Ledger and BlockFi safety breaches, not each hack ends in a lack of funds; exchanges and providers that retailer KYC data are a honeypot for hackers, who promote stolen private data like emails and bodily addresses on the darkish internet.

You’ll soar by means of extra hoops in the event you purchase bitcoin this manner and it is going to be tougher than the standard route, however the bitcoin might be “extra personal” because of this (although this sometimes comes at a excessive premium price).

Hodl Hodl

Hodl Hodl is a world, peer-to-peer bitcoin trade that makes use of multisignature wallets to escrow trades between customers. 

The Hodl Hodl market provides merchants the choice to assist whichever fee technique they need (Zelle, PayPal, financial institution wire, altcoins, SWIFT, bank cards and present playing cards). As soon as fee for a commerce is full, both social gathering indicators their finish of the multisig pockets to launch funds. Within the occasion that there’s a disagreement, Hodl Hodl’s group arbitrates.

As a result of Hodl Hodl doesn’t require KYC, bitcoin sometimes sells at a premium in comparison with different exchanges, anyplace from 5% up.

Trading fees are break up between the customer and vendor, 0.3% of every commerce.


Like Hodl Hodl, Bisq is a peer-to-peer bitcoin trade, however it’s not web-hosted.

Bisq is Bitcoin’s solely self-hosted decentralized trade. Which means that every Bisq consumer should obtain the trade’s software program and run a Bisq node to commerce on the service. A multisignature pockets is used to escrow trades.

The trade affords bitcoin and monero (XMR) buying and selling with limits that vary from 0.25 to 2 BTC for every commerce, relying on the fee technique (that are much like Hodl Hodl’s). Market maker charges are 0.1% and taker charges are 0.7%; if customers pay charges in BSQ, a bitcoin-colored coin that acts as Bisq’s trade token, they’re 0.05% for makers and 0.35% for takers.

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