When Elon Musk provides #Bitcoin to his Twitter bio, you already know 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 Avenue Bets saga. 

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

Associated: Market Wrap: Bitcoin Bumps to $38.6K Whereas DeFi Exchanges Hit $50B

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

The centralized change is likely one of the oldest within the recreation 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 simple and it’s been round for thus many market cycles, the service has robust model recognition and community results, making it a routine referral to newcomers seeking to purchase bitcoin. 

As evidenced by the inflow of latest customers, Coinbase is fairly well-liked. 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 in addition.

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

US-based bitcoin-only brokers

Associated: Are You Working a Bitcoin Node?

Beneath are venues to purchase bitcoin which might be unique to the U.S. and which provide bitcoin shopping for and promoting solely. Their charges are corresponding to or decrease than Coinbase’s personal and so they typically 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 an alternative of true exchanges the place customers can commerce with one another.

Money App

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

Obtainable on cell and net, Money App permits you to buy as much as $100,000 per week in bitcoin, in addition to withdraw $2,000 day-after-day and $5,000 every week.

Money App additionally presents computerized recurring buys and has a debit card which provides holders bitcoin-back rewards. Buying charges fluctuate from roughly 1%-3% relying on the order dimension (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 Monetary 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 simple as downloading Money App, however River’s monetary suite presents 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 too can 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 costs anyplace from 1%-3% for buys, relying on dimension.

Swan Bitcoin

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

The bitcoin-only service has turn out to be well-liked amongst bitcoiners as a result of it permits its customers to set each day recurring auto-buys for as little as a greenback. Swan customers also can designate a pockets for withdrawals. It’s designed for bitcoiners who wish to set a each day or weekly common purchase, and it presents 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% charge, until the client prepays their charges by way of an annual financial savings plan, through 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’re inside or exterior the U.S., listed below are a number of centralized exchanges that service a global clientele. 

Every change featured under presents a cell app (for Android and iOS) to handle your account on the go and permits fiat foreign money deposits by way of financial institution switch or credit score/debit playing cards. Additionally they have Bitcoin’s Lightning Community enabled (or plan to take action within the close to future), which 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 change 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 is probably not as simple for newcomers as a result of these exchanges, which embody a great deal of altcoins, are actually arrange as buying and selling venues earlier than anything. Consequently, these unaccustomed to cryptocurrency change layouts could discover them tougher to navigate than different choices.


A global change that is likely one of 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 presents 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 likely one of the oldest U.S.-based exchanges and presents each spot buying and selling for bitcoin and altcoins in addition to leveraged buying and selling. The change helps deposits in USD, EUR, CAD, AUD, GBP, CHF, JPY and main stablecoins.

Withdrawal charges for bitcoin are set at 0.0005 BTC.

Kraken Alternate instructed CoinDesk on the finish of 2020 that it plans to combine the Bitcoin Lightning Community for deposits and withdrawals this 12 months. 


OKCoin is a global change that accepts USD, EUR and Singapore greenback (SGD) deposits and main stablecoins. The change is within the strategy of integrating the Lightning Community, which ought to go reside 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 get together (in contrast to the centralized exchanges explored above). Since you by no means relinquish your personal keys to the change, no third get together can freeze your funds on these providers. 

Non-KYC exchanges permit clients to purchase bitcoin underneath the radar such that they don’t reveal delicate private data to a 3rd get together. 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 net.

You’ll bounce by way of extra hoops in the event you purchase bitcoin this fashion and it will likely be harder than the standard route, however the bitcoin shall be “extra personal” in consequence (although this sometimes comes at a excessive premium price).

Hodl Hodl

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

The Hodl Hodl market provides merchants the choice to help whichever cost methodology they need (Zelle, PayPal, financial institution wire, altcoins, SWIFT, bank cards and reward playing cards). As soon as cost for a commerce is full, both get together indicators their finish of the multisig pockets to launch funds. Within the occasion that there’s a disagreement, Hodl Hodl’s staff 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.

Buying and selling charges are break up between the client and vendor, 0.3% of every commerce.


Like Hodl Hodl, Bisq is a peer-to-peer bitcoin change, but it surely’s not web-hosted.

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

The change presents bitcoin and monero (XMR) buying and selling with limits that vary from 0.25 to 2 BTC for every commerce, relying on the cost methodology (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 change token, they’re 0.05% for makers and 0.35% for takers.

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