Exchanges are an essential part of the virtual currency world. They allow you to transfer fiat currencies, such as the USD or EUR, into bitcoin and vice versa. If you’re looking to buy bitcoin our list of best bitcoin exchanges should be helpful.
List of Best Bitcoin Exchanges
Currently, there are more than 100 exchanges online. However, we only list those that are on the market for a longer period. Also, they must have positive feedback from users (and us). Please find your favorite exchange on the list below.
Best Bitcoin Exchanges – Overall Top 5
- Binance is currently one of the top bitcoin exchanges by volume. Buy altcoins too.
- Coinbase is one of the best bitcoin wallets where you cansecurely buy & sell bitcoin.
- LocalBitcoins is a bitcoin marketplace where you trade with other users.
- Cex.io is an online marketplace for trading bitcoins for USD, EUR, RUB and altcoins.
- Changelly is a good option to exchange between low liquid cryptos.
Best Bitcoin Exchanges – Buy, Sell, Exchange
The main focus of these exchanges is on transferring traditional currencies, such as the USD, EUR, and GBP, into bitcoin and around. Payment methods vary on the exchange: besides traditional payment methods such as credit and debit cards, bank account, and cash, some of them also accept the alternative or indirect payment methods such as gift cards, PayPal and similar.
- At Coinmotion you can buy, sell, and store bitcoin. Their price is a real-time aggregate from several major exchanges with a 2 % commission.
- Cryptex24 is simple and convenient exchange platform for crypto currencies. You can pay with some exotic payment methods.
- AlfaCash – buy, sell & exchange bitcoin, litecoin and dash instantly.
- Cex.io is an online marketplace for trading bitcoins for USD, EUR, RUB and some altcoins. Bank account and credit/debit card are the main deposit methods here. Then buy & sell bitcoins.
- XMLGold – digital currency market that accepts PerfectMoney.
- CRXZone provides crypto currencies wallet platform. They support major banks.
- SpectroCoin – offers fiat and virtual currencies exchange with more than 20 currency options being available. They are building bitcoin bank too.
- Uphold – If you own a US bank account, you can buy bitcoin with direct ACH bank transfer with low fees.
- Paybis – it offers a wide range of payment methods to buy, sell or exchange cryptocurrency since 2014. You can convert bitcoin to PayPal here.
- BitQuick is focused on U.S. users. They can buy and sell bitcoins instantly for cash. It works with most popular banks and credit unions, but rates are rather high.
- There is no traditional currency support at ShapeShift. Use it if you want to exchange between different cryptocurrencies. The same goes for Changelly.
- Coinbase is probably the best online bitcoin wallet that allows you to securely buy, sell, use, and accept bitcoin currency.
Best Bitcoin Exchanges – Exchange With Other Users
Unlike with centralized bitcoin platforms, you make an exchange directly with another person. Buy/sell bitcoins in-person near you or online.
- LocalBitcoins is a bitcoin marketplace. Unlike with most exchanges, you make a trade directly with another person near you or online. They offer over-the-counter trading of local currency for bitcoins. Users post offers on the website, where they state exchange rates and payment methods for buying or selling bitcoins.
- HodlHodl is P2P cryptocurrency exchange that allows users to trade directly with each other and it doesn’t hold user funds. Because it does not hold any money it is not subject to complex compliance procedures.
- Paxful is another bitcoin marketplace to buy and sell bitcoins from other users. You can purchase bitcoins with gift cards here.
- xCoins is officially a lending site, where they connect bitcoin loan seekers and lenders. But it more works like buy/sell bitcoin site.
- Bitcoin.de – german bitcoin marketplace where you can purchase bitcoins from other registered users and sell yours to them. It used to be the largest bitcoin marketplace in Europe.
- CoinCafe makes it easy to purchase bitcoins in person in New York City.
A word about Decentralized Exchanges
The majority of cryptocurrency exchanges are centralized. This is in total contradiction with the basic principles of cryptocurrencies which are decentralization and privacy. That is why decentralized exchanges are probably the future of cryptocurrency trading.
Best Bitcoin Exchanges – Buy Only
Once you buy your coins here, you can not sell them back here.
- CoinMama – a bitcoin broker working since 2013. They offer an easy way to buy bitcoin and ethereum with a credit card or bank deposit.
What’s the Difference Between a Wallet and an Exchange?
Bitcoin exchanges are the main players in the crypto market. One of their biggest advantages is the ability for everyone to perform a quick withdrawal of newly-acquired BTC to any bitcoin address. Typically each exchange itself serves as a wallet, and a person can use it for any bitcoin activity (payments, withdrawals). That is why you do not need another bitcoin wallet for that purpose, however, it is highly recommended to store coins in a separate hardware wallet rather than on an exchange as this is safer.
Best Bitcoin Exchanges With Trading Tools
Besides purchasing bitcoins, some bitcoin exchanges offer a trading option. This way with some experience, activity, and luck, you can benefit from the volatility of the cryptocurrency markets. You can also just buy bitcoins here, but the main focus of these platforms is to trade bitcoins.
- Kucoin is a place to hunt for newer cryptocurrencies. They usually get listed here before they come to exchanges with more substantial volume. Warning: hacked in Sep 2020.
- Binance is currently one of the top bitcoin exchanges by volume. Besides bitcoin, you can buy many newer crypto currencies (altcoins).
- Bitstamp – efficient bitcoin exchange solution with robust trading services. Highly respected and reliable exchange with low transaction fees.
- Kraken – forex trading and bitcoin exchange in one service. You can deposit fiat currencies with Sepa, Swift, Wire and other methods.
Unverified and New Bitcoin Exchanges
These exchanges are usually new and we do not have enough information about their services to put them on our best bitcoin exchanges list. Use them with caution. We move them up once we have enough positive user’s reviews.
- E-scrooge – buy, sell, exchange bitcoin, OKPay and other e-currencies.
- OpenChange – exchange, buy, sell bitcoins and litecoins for Perfect money, Paxum, BTC-E codes, Money Gram.
- Unichange – exchange bitcoin and Perfect Money to Visa, Mastercard, PayPal.
- AnycoinDirect – buy and sell bitcoins and other crypto’s easy, fast and secure.
- Cash2PM – buy, sell Perfect Money, bitcoin.
Rip Exchanges and Exchanges in Trouble
Here we put exchanges that are reported by users as “problematic”. Usually, they are delaying with bitcoin withdrawals or were hacked. Therefore, we can not put them on our list of best bitcoin exchanges.
CleverCoin– acquired by Kraken Bitok– a platform for buying, selling and trading digital currencies. Cryptsy– the exchange to go to for trading between different cryptocurrencies. Expresscoin– self-claimed as one of the largest bitcoin retailers. igot– they owe a lot of users a lot of money they can’t withdraw. They rebranded themselves as Bitlio.com recently. Coinwallet– buy/sell bitcoins worldwide.
- Circle – you can no longer buy and sell bitcoin through them.
Snapcard– “we’re deeply sorry to announce that we will no longer continue operating the platform”. BTC-e– US authorities seized the BTC-e.com domain name. Celery– Celery will no longer sell bitcoins directly to consumers. 247exchange– banking problems forced them to temporarily stop the service. Indacoin– it seems that they are out of the business. Coinomat– they are not an exchange anymore.
- German exchange
Cubitswent kaputt. Cryptopia– totally hacked
Related & Notes
- To minimize the price volatility, you can use stablecoins when exchanging and trading. Find the best stablecoins on this stablecoin list.
- If you want to run your own bitcoin exchange, check BTCTrader.
- Cryptocurrency exchanges choose to register in a variety of legal jurisdictions. The largest exchanges are either based in places with comprehensive regulation or none at all. Find out more about jurisdictions in this research.
- You are also able to buy & sell bitcoin through most bitcoin trading platforms.
- If you want to find top bitcoin exchanges by volume, go to Coinmarket Cap.
From The News
- The U.K. has the most crypto exchanges of any nation worldwide, according to a report from Bitfury’s blockchain analytics arm, Crystal. Despite being home to banks that make buying crypto with GBP tricky, Britain has 43 exchanges registered. Coming in at second and third place, respectively, are the U.S. with 27 exchanges, and Hong Kong with 22. Actually, second place with 33 exchanges really goes to “unknown” – entities whose geographic location can’t be identified. Singapore, Australia and China occupy fourth to sixth places, respectively [sep 13, 2019, source].
- Cryptocurrency exchange ShapeShift announced that it had acquired Texas-based startup Bitfract. It has developed a tool that lets you trade a Bitcoin for multiple altcoins in one simple transaction [august 7, 2018, source].
- U.S. based cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex announced that on the 20th of august it will launch US dollar (USD) markets for Ethereum Classic (ETC) and XRP [august 6, 2018, via twitter].
- Coinbase confirmed the expansion of its services into Japan, one of the biggest cryptocurrencies markets. The company will launch a new office in Japan and ensured it will be working closely with the Financial Services Agency (FSA), the country’s financial regulator [june 5, 2018].
- HitBTC has announced a service suspension for Japanese residents. According to the company, this decision was made to prevent any trouble with the country’s financial regulator. The cryptocurrencies exchange services are not authorized in Japan. From now on, users with Japanese IP address will be asked to provide their residency information [june 4, 2018].
- Kraken exchange quits Japanese market. According to Bloomberg, the exchange said that it will cease trading due to rising costs of doing business in the country. However, it will continue to offer its services to Japanese citizens and businesses who are domiciled outside of the country [april 19, 2018].