Historically, one of the biggest barriers to entry for cryptocurrency wannabes was the actual obtaining of the tokens. This could be done through traditional mining practices or by way of trading. Rarely, users would be able to buy Bitcoin with a credit card, rarer still was the functionality to buy other crypto tokens directly.
Instead, users would have to purchase Bitcoin and then exchange currencies. Now the large and reputable exchanges are cutting out the intermediate steps, allowing users to transact with their credit or debit card for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Here are the best 4 exchanges for purchasing cryptocurrency directly using a Visa or Mastercard.
CEX.IO is famed for its security features and the option to buy a large range of crypto tokens directly using a credit or debit card. This Bitcoin exchange operates a very simple and accessible interface allowing users to transact freely without getting confused.
CEX.IO is the best all-round exchange, it can be used by experienced traders and amateur investors alike. Fees are fair and exchange rates are competitive, giving users a brilliant upfront offering. Unlike many exchanges of this sort, CEX.IO allows users to buy not only the most popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum, but also the less known, yet promising ones, like Stellar Lumens, Zcash, or Dash. These altcoins are very popular additions to the exchange.
Security is CEX.IO’s priority. Verification processes are in place for larger transactions and because of these rigorous practices, not a single coin has been stolen from the exchange thus far.
Fees at CEX.IO range from very low at around 0-0.25% for trading cryptocurrency and up to 7% for instant buying. Mind that you will be also charged for deposits and withdrawals. Because the fee system is different across the various transaction types, it is important to ensure that you know the fee applicable when you’re purchasing your crypto.
One of the first crypto exchanges to offer direct access to Bitcoin by purchasing with a credit or debit card, Coinbase has now got a select offering available to users. This means that you can now obtain a crypto wallet, transact with relative ease and purchase crypto tokens (Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Ethereum Classic) on the Coinbase exchange.
There are notable exceptions to the Coinbase offering such as XRP, so users wishing to obtain the third largest cryptocurrency will find limitations at Coinbase. On a positive side, Coinbase operates seamlessly in over 32 different countries worldwide and has grown to be a huge crypto exchange.
Costs for a card transaction on Coinbase will vary based on your location and will start from 3.99%.
Another very large crypto exchange, Coinmama offers a fairly parallel platform to Coinbase. There are, however, some big differences. Coinmama is a fantastic exchange if you want to purchase crypto directly into your personal wallet.
Though, drawbacks to Coinmama are significant as the transaction fees here are high enough with an eye-watering 5.9% charged by Coinmama itself and 5% charged by a processor for a credit or debit card transaction. Also, there is no facility for crypto users to trade back their coins, so if you wish to sell the crypto you have purchased from Coinmama, you will have to head to a different exchange.
A benefit of using Coinmama is that they do allow high volume trading, users can buy up to $20,000 of cryptocurrency each month. For high volume buyers who are not concerned about transaction fees hitting their bottom line, Coinmama is a very good option.
Bitpanda predominantly caters to the European crypto market and operates a very good platform for those looking to purchase cryptocurrency. It has a better token offering than Coinbase and users can easily purchase Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ether, XRP and a few other tokens using their credit card.
Bitpanda also has bank transfer functionality as well, for those not wishing to use a credit card to buy their crypto tokens.
From a fee perspective, Bitpanda has undercut some exchanges slightly and offers users a flat fee of 5% on all credit card purchases. Alternatively, using the bank transfer facility attracts a much more amenable fee of 1% and many Bitpanda users simply bypass credit card transactions for this reason.
The downside to Bitpanda is, of course, that if you are looking to transact outside of the European economic area, you will likely have great difficulty.
To Sum It Up
All of the exchanges mentioned have their merits, Coinbase has a very large US user base and is great if you’re purchasing Bitcoin for the first time in the US. Coinmama has large purchase limits but also has large fees to match. Bitpanda is a great European exchange and CEX.IO is a worldwide all-around platform.
No matter which of the discussed exchanges you will eventually decide on, it is always reasonable to do your own comprehensive research and make up a list of pros and cons for each of the options. You should also bear in mind that all reputable exchanges are legal entities bound by laws and regulations of the countries they operate in. It is only natural that they would have some restrictions and limitations for different locations, so make sure to carefully learn the terms and conditions before using a particular exchange.