Best Places To Buy Bitcoin With A Credit Card
Buying bitcoins with a credit card used to be a challenge. Thankfully, that’s no longer the case. As more and more BTC exchanges open for business and compete to attract customers, the process has become easier than ever. If you have a Visa or MasterCard, regardless of whether it’s a debit or credit card, you can easily purchase bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies.
Which BTC exchanges are reputable? Which ones are the most promising when it comes to buying bitcoins with a credit card?
Update – Credit Cards Blocking Crypto Purchases February 2018
Actually they are treating them like cash advances with HUGE fees and daily accruing interest.
Effectively killing credit card purchases…
If you are still undeterred, and your credit card allows it here’s a quick glance at the “best in class” ‘bitcoin credit card brokers’ where you can use credit to buy bitcoin.
We’ll cover them in detail below. I’ll highlight the pros and cons of each service, and point out what to look for when you test drive them.
Before we get there, however, let’s talk about how to select a credit card-friendly bitcoin exchange. The factors we’ll cover in the following section are the ones that’ll prove to be the most meaningful when you’re ready to buy bitcoins with a Visa or MasterCard.
How To Choose A Credit Card-Friendly Bitcoin Exchange
Just because a BTC marketplace accepts credit cards doesn’t mean you should buy bitcoins there.
Some exchanges have lax security measures, which means your bitcoins and personal information will be at greater risk.
Others struggle with liquidity problems. At these sites, it’s not uncommon to wait for days before your purchase orders are filled and your bitcoins are delivered.
Still others offer little to no customer support. And when you DO receive a response from a support rep, it’s often unhelpful.
You don’t need to settle. There are several terrific, credit card-friendly BTC exchanges that excel in all of the crucial areas. I’ve made it easy for you by profiling the best of the breed below. But you should still be familiar with the attributes that signify a legitimate bitcoin exchange.
Here they are…
Have you ever seen news headlines claiming that “Bitcoin was hacked”? These type of headlines are highly misleading. While Bitcoin is vulnerable to cyberattacks in theory, its exposure is minimal thanks to how the blockchain works (a topic for another time).
What actually happens is that BTC exchanges are occasionally targeted and hacked. In fact, the biggest exchanges in the world are subject to daily attacks. This is the reason security is so critical.
At the very least, you want to see 2-factor authentication (2FA). It’s also a good sign if the exchange can show evidence that it keeps a large portion of BTC in cold storage.
If the exchange has a history of leaks, run the other way and don’t look back.
Before you commit yourself to an exchange, take a look at its order book. Look closely at the volume of buys and sells. The greater the volume, the greater the liquidity.
Why should you care about liquidity? Because it influences the speed at which your trades are filled. That means it affects how quickly you can obtain the bitcoins you want to purchase.
Moreover, greater liquidity means lower price volatility in response to trades. It’s like purchasing 1,000 shares of Amazon’s stock. Your purchase won’t affect the stock’s price. But try purchasing 1,000 shares of a thinly-traded stock of some small, unknown company. You’ll see the price rise in response.
That’s a liquidity problem.
Each of the six BTC exchanges profiled below boast a lot of volume, and thus plenty of liquidity.
This continues to be one of the most overlooked aspects of choosing a reputable Bitcoin exchange that accepts credit cards. It’s easy to dismiss the role of customer support in enjoying a positive experience buying bitcoins. It’s only when we need questions answered or issues resolved that its importance becomes clear.
All legitimate BTC exchanges offer responsive, helpful support. Their reps respond quickly rather than making you wait several days for a response. And they help to streamline the process of purchasing bitcoins rather than just sending out useless, unhelpful form-letter responses.
That’s important because most exchanges have protocols in place that red-flag accounts and freeze customers’ funds for various infractions. If your account is flagged, knowing that you can reach out to a support rep and get the matter resolved in a timely fashion is a major boon.
Ease Of Use
Stick to bitcoin exchanges that even a first-timer will find easy to navigate. If a novice can negotiate the exchange’s site, someone who is already familiar with buying bitcoins with credit cards is unlikely to have problems.
Keep in mind that just because an exchange is easy to use doesn’t mean it’s light on advanced features. The best BTC exchanges package all of their features in a seamless, intuitive platform.
You have enough options today for buying bitcoins that there’s no reason to make things more difficult than necessary.
Fees And Commissions
All exchanges charge fees. That’s how they stay in business. So realize ahead of time that you’ll pay them whenever you buy bitcoins with a Visa or MasterCard.
The trick is finding reputable BTC exchanges that charge reasonable fees. (Don’t worry. I have this covered for you below.)
At most exchanges, the more you trade, the lower your fees will be. High-volume traders generally pay lower fees as a percentage of each transaction than the occasional buyer. Keep in mind, the volume of trades you need to place to be eligible for lower fees is usually high. And trading, of course, comes with risks.
If you just want to buy bitcoins every now and then, it’s important to find exchanges that won’t gouge you (see my list below).
Most people who are interested in cryptocurrencies buy them on a small level. For example, they might buy 0.50 bitcoins every once in a while (at today’s prices, that’s still real money).
But let’s say you’re a big buyer, and want to purchase 20+ bitcoins at a time. At today’s prices, that’s over $80,000. Given that amount of money, you can understand why many BTC exchanges would balk at such transactions.
Most exchanges impose purchase limits on customers, especially upon those with new accounts. Some exchanges have frustratingly low limits. They’re especially cautious, and want to see a solid history of trades, along with ID verification, before they raise their customers’ limits.
Other exchanges have higher limits, even for new accounts.
If you’re buying small amounts of bitcoins every now and then, the limits are unlikely to be a problem for you. Even so, you still want to see them rise over time if your account remains in good standing.
The more payment options, the better. After all, who doesn’t like flexibility when it comes to buying bitcoins?
There’s a fair bit of variance between BTC exchanges in this area. Most of them welcome the use of major credit cards. You can even use a debit card as long as it displays the Visa or MasterCard emblem.
The upside of using a credit card to buy bitcoins is that trades are completed quickly – usually as soon as verification and delivery of funds have gone through. Having said that, there are downsides. For example, it’s difficult to remain anonymous when you use a credit card with your name attached to the account.
Several of the top BTC exchanges accept bank transfers, Paypal payments, and even cash. But for the majority of folks, credit cards represent the simplest and most convenient method for purchasing bitcoins.
There’s no justifiable reason to buy bitcoins with a credit card from disreputable or untested exchanges. Doing so imposes too much risk. Remember, you can just as easily purchase bitcoins from legitimate exchanges that have been around for years.
How do you find out the reputation of a given BTC marketplace? Read reviews. I’ve included comprehensive reviews of the top bitcoin exchanges.
Don’t just assume a given exchange is trustworthy. The sad fact is, there are a lot of scams out there. I’ve reviewed the best exchanges to save you the trouble and heartache.
Top 6 BTC Exchanges To Buy Bitcoins With A Credit Card
You now know what to look for in an established, reliable bitcoin exchange. The factors above are the ones that’ll determine your experience buying bitcoins – positive or otherwise.
The good news is that I’ve done heavy lifting for you. You don’t have to spend time vetting each exchange you find. If you intend to buy bitcoins with a credit card, I recommend that you stick to the following six services.
#1 – CoinMama.com
At CoinMama, you can easily buy bitcoins with Visa and MasterCard, or cash. They specialize in facilitating trades with credit cards, but you can use services like Western Union if you prefer.
I like CoinMama because transactions are completed quickly, they offer high limits (with ID verification), and provide solid support. On the downside, their fees are a bit high (6.75%) and they don’t conduct business in select states in the U.S. (although they DO conduct business in over 220 countries).
Read my full CoinMama.com review here.
#2 – CEX.io
I love CEX. Not only are they a great platform for buying bitcoins with credit cards, but they offer a ton of liquidity, impose reasonable fees (3.5% + $ 0.25), and process purchase orders instantly. They also offer 24/7 support and high limits for verified accounts.
CEX has been around for years, having launched in 2013. It definitely has a history, and a solid reputation.
Read my full CEX.io review here.
#3 – BitPanda.com
If you use a credit card to buy bitcoins at BitPanda, you’ll find that the fees are minuscule (they’re higher if you’re using an e-wallet like Neteller). But it’s important to realize that the real fee is actually contained in the purchase price.
The user interface at BitPanda is slick. You’ll have no trouble finding your way around the site. And you’re unlikely to have problems buying bitcoins with a credit card. In the event you don’t want to use a credit card, you can use several other options.
The downside, at least for me, is that BitPanda doesn’t operate in the U.S. But if you live in the UK or EU, definitely check them out.
Read my full BitPanda.com review here.
#4 – Xcoins.io
Using a Visa or MasterCard to buy bitcoins is simple and easy at Xcoins. You can also use Paypal if you prefer (though there are some risks associated with that route).
One of the many things I like about Xcoins is that transactions are completed almost instantly. This is possible thanks to the exchange’s secured lending platform. Moreover, lenders compete for your business via low fees and flexible terms.
There was some controversy several months ago when it was reported that Xcoins had been hacked. But all monies were returned to customers. Additionally, the hack was a wakeup call for Xcoins, who undoubtedly strengthened their security protocols to prevent such breaches in the future.
Read my full Xcoins.io review here.
#5 – SpectroCoin.com
If you have a credit card, you’re in business at SpectroCoin. You can easily buy bitcoins after a simple, quick account registration and verification process.
One of the distinguishing features of SpectroCoin is that you can get a prepaid debit card to use at the point of sale at millions of merchants around the world. You can also use this card to withdraw cash from millions of ATMs. (Note, the debit card isn’t available to U.S. customers).
SpectroCoin’s fee structure is a little high (5.5% for credit card transactions). But they operate around the world, and offer a number of customer support options (including a phone number!).
Read my full SpectroCoin.com review here.
#6 – Coinbase.com
Of all the credit card-friendly bitcoin exchanges out there, Coinbase has one of the best reputations. They’ve been around for a long time (2012), and have legions of satisfied customers.
Coinbase charges relatively low fees (3.99% on credit card transactions), and boasts a user interface that’s simple even for beginners. They also offer U.S. customers a debit card. It’s called the Shift card, and can be used anywhere VISA is accepted. That means you can use it to withdraw cash instantly at millions of ATMs. (Note, the Shift card isn’t available in a few states due to regulatory issues.)
One of the downsides of using Coinbase is that they impose low limits on new accounts. But it’s often possible to get them to raise those limits, particularly if your account has a bit of history. And you’d be hard pressed to find a BTC exchange with a better reputation.
Read my full Coinbase.com review here.
As noted earlier, it has never been easier to buy bitcoins with a credit card. Just make sure you stick to reputable exchanges that have been thoroughly vetted. To that end, I can confidently recommend the six BTC exchanges I’ve profiled above. They boast tens of thousands of satisfied customers who have been buying bitcoins without problems for years.
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