Finding the cheapest way to buy Bitcoin is important.
I’ll tell you why:
The Bitcoins that you are losing due to trading fees could be worth a fortune in 5 years.
To help you avoid that problem, we put together this guide with the cheapest ways to buy Bitcoin.
Let’s dive right into it!
Coinbase is often referred to as the simplest way to buy Bitcoin. The exchange has been around since 2014 and enables its users to buy Bitcoin and 10+ other cryptocurrencies very easily.
- Amazing user interface
- Good customer support
- 10+ cryptocurrencies available
- High credit card deposit fees
Coinbase charges a 1.49% trading fee which is charged whenever you buy or sell cryptocurrency on the exchange.
To buy Bitcoin cheaply on Coinbase, avoid depositing funds with your credit card since an additional 3.99% fee will be charged. If available in your jurisdiction, do a SEPA transfer or ACH transfer instead since both are free.
CEX is a good bitcoin exchange for beginners due to its intuitive user interface. The exchange has been around since 2013 and has proven to be safe and reliable in that time.
- Low trading fee of just 0.25%
- Intuitive to use
- Available 220+ countries
- “Instant Buy” feature comes with hefty fee
CEX is one of the very few Bitcoin exchanges that do not charge a withdrawal fee. The only costs associated with buying Bitcoin on CEX are a low trading fee of just 0.25%.
If you want to buy Bitcoin cheaply, do not make use of CEX’s “Instant Buy” feature. Buying Bitcoin through the “Instant Buy” box comes with a hefty 7% fee.
Furthermore, you should also only deposit money with a bank transfer or SEPA, since that will be free. If you make use of VISA or Mastercard to buy Bitcoin on CEX then you will be charged an additional 3.5% fee.
Having launched back in 2013 and served over 1.3 Million customers, Coinmama is not only one of the cheapest ways to buy Bitcoin for beginners, but also a very trustworthy option.
- Great customer support
- Fast identity verification process
- Simple user interface
- Higher trading fees than other exchanges we reviewed
- High credit card deposit fees
Although Coinmama charges a 5.5% transaction fee, which is higher than other exchanges, it balances that out by offering a low Bitcoin price and not charging any big spreads on top of it.
To buy Bitcoin as cheaply as possible on Coinmama you should deposit funds using SEPA, and not your credit card. If you make a credit card deposit, then an additional 5% fee is charged.
Founded by Jack Dorsey (Creator of Twitter), CashApp is a simple way to receive and send money. Since late 2018, the app now also enables its users to easily buy Bitcoin.
- Very simple to use
- Zero fees
- Not possible to withdraw Bitcoins to an external wallet
- Not ideal to purchase large amounts due to a spread that is charged
- CashApp currently does not let users spend their Bitcoins
To buy Bitcoin on CashApp, you first need to deposit some funds to the app. You can do so in just seconds by linking your credit or debit card.
After your funds arrived, simply head over to the “Buy Bitcoin” section, choose the amount of BTC you want to purchase and click “BUY”.
Please keep in mind that although CashApp does not charge any fees, it may charge an exchange rate spread if you are purchasing a larger amount.
Other cheap exchanges (not for beginners)
The exchanges that we have reviewed so far are great options for people that are just getting started in the cryptocurrency space.
Exchanges like CEX or Coinbase put a lot of effort into developing a very simple user interface, however, this often comes with a slightly higher trading fee.
If you are comfortable with sacrificing a simple user interface in exchange for lower trading fees, then you should look into the following Bitcoin exchanges.
Founded in 2011, Kraken is one of the oldest and most established Bitcoin exchanges in the space. The exchange is known for its advanced trading interface and wide variety of available coins.
- Extremely low trading fees of just 0.25%
- Excellent customer support
- Confusing user interface
- No way to instantly buy Bitcoin
Kraken offers fee discounts based on the amount of cryptocurrencies that you trade per month. If you trade less than $50,000 per month then your trading fee is 0.25%.
However, the fee can be reduced up to 0.00% if you trade more than $10,000,000 worth of cryptocurrency per month, making Kraken the cheapest way to buy Bitcoin.
Although Binance was only established in 2017, it has already captured the trust of millions of users due to its vast offering of altcoins, good customer support, and competitive trading fees.
- Low trading fee of just 0.1%
- 120+ coins available (in addition to Bitcoin)
- Very high security standards
- Interface can be confusing for beginners
- No option to buy Bitcoin with USD, EUR, or GBP
Binance charges a trading fee of just 0.1%. Interestingly, this fee can be reduced even further by using the BNB coin (Binance’s native cryptocurrency) to pay trading fees.
Binance also charges a withdrawal fee of $1-5 depending on the cryptocurrency that you are withdrawing.
Local Bitcoins was launched in 2012 as a platform enabling in-person trades in Bitcoin. Throughout the years, the exchange has become very popular in countries that have banned Bitcoin.
- Cheap way to buy Bitcoin in countries where its banned
- Commissions can be high in some cases
- Meeting in person with a Bitcoin seller can be dangerous
- User interface is not very intuitive
Local Bitcoins charges a 1% fee whenever a trade is completed through the platform. However, the fee structure gets a bit more complicated than that unfortunately.
Since Local Bitcoins is a peer-to-peer trading platform, the individual that has the liquidity to fulfill your order (either to buy or sell Bitcoin) decides the commission that he charges you. This commission usually ranges between 5-12%.
What costs are there when buying Bitcoin?
There are 5 main costs associated with buying Bitcoin on an exchange: trading fees, credit card fees, bank transfer fees, spread, and “instant buy” fees,
Trading fees and the spread (premium on the BTC price) charged by the exchange cannot be circumvented.
However, if you want to buy Bitcoin cheaply, then you should avoid using credit cards or the “instant buy” feature to buy Bitcoin.
Instead, simply deposit funds with a bank transfer, and then place a regular buy order on the exchange.
Why is it important to buy Bitcoin cheap?
In the short-term, paying a 10% fee to buy Bitcoin may not seem like a big deal. However, if you believe in the long-term success of BTC then buying Bitcoin cheap is crucial.
Let’s say that you buy 1 BTC and pay a 10% fee. Doing this will leave you with 0.9 BTC after fees.
Now, on the other hand, imagine if instead you buy 1 BTC at an exchange like CEX, and only pay 0.25% fees. That will leave you with 0.99975 BTC.
That’s a difference of nearly 0.1 BTC!
Many Bitcoin evangelists believe that the currency could reach $100k per coin one day. This means that this 0.1 BTC that you saved in fees could be worth $10k in the future.
This is why it’s very important to find a very cheap way to buy Bitcoin.
Is it possible to get Bitcoin for free?
Contrary to popular belief, getting Bitcoin for free is indeed possible. However, there will be some work involved.
One of the simplest ways to get some Bitcoin for free is by using a BTC faucet, which is essentially a website that gives you fractions of a Bitcoin in exchange for performing simple tasks like watching an ad.
Another option is to participate in so-called “cryptocurrency bounty programs”, where you can earn Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies by performing simple social media and content creation tasks.
For a more exhaustive guide, make sure to check out our guide on how to make money with Bitcoin.
What to watch out for when looking for a cheap way to buy Bitcoin?
There are a few things that you need to keep in mind when looking for a cheap way to buy Bitcoin. These range from security considerations, to hidden fees. Let’s briefly dive into each one before we end this guide.
If an exchange claims to be the cheapest way to buy Bitcoin, could it be offering that at the cost of security? Securing a cryptocurrency exchange is expensive, and if an exchange has no income from trading fees then its questionable whether they have enough funds to perform decent security audits.
Another consideration are potential scams, which lure new users in with attractive “0% fee offers”. To stay safe, stick to the exchanges that we recommend in this guide.
Another point to watch out for are hidden fees, which can come in the form of a spread or putting your data for sale.
One example for this is the exchange “RobinHood”, which got widely popular due to its zero-fee policy but also publicly admitted to selling the data of its users to high-frequency traders.
Ease of use
Finally, many exchanges that offer a very cheap way to buy Bitcoin are tailored for traders and experienced market participants.
Although the fee structure may seem attractive to you, you will have to stop and think if you are already experienced enough to be interacting with these platforms.
CoinDiligent Staff Writer