The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges: [Most Comprehensive Guide List]

Ameer Rosic

2 years ago
The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges: [Most Comprehensive Guide List]
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[Updated July 12th 2019]

So you want to start trading cryptocurrencies? Check out this guide to the best cryptocurrency exchanges. Can’t get enough of cryptocurrencies? Take our beginner course on cryptoeconomics.

What is a cryptocurrency exchange?

Cryptocurrency exchanges are websites where you can buy, sell or exchange cryptocurrencies for other digital currency or traditional currency like US dollars or Euro. For those that want to trade professionally and have access to fancy trading tools, you will likely need to use an exchange that requires you to verify your ID and open an account. If you just want to make the occasional, straightforward trade, there are also platforms that you can use that do not require an account.

Types of exchanges

  • Trading Platforms – These are websites that connect buyers and sellers and take a fee from each transaction.
  • Direct Trading – These platforms offer direct person to person trading where individuals from different countries can exchange currency. Direct trading exchanges don’t have a fixed market price, instead, each seller sets their own exchange rate.
  • Brokers – These are websites that anyone can visit to buy cryptocurrencies at a price set by the broker. Cryptocurrency brokers are similar to foreign exchange dealers.

 

What to look out for before joining an exchange

It’s important to do a little homework before you start trading. Here are a few things you should check before making your first trade.

  • Reputation – The best way to find out about an exchange is to search through reviews from individual users and well-known industry websites. You can ask any questions you might have on forums like BitcoinTalk or Reddit.
  • Fees – Most exchanges should have fee-related information on their websites. Before joining, make sure you understand deposit, transaction and withdrawal fees. Fees can differ substantially depending on the exchange you use.
  • Payment Methods – What payment methods are available on the exchange? Credit & debit card? wire transfer? PayPal? If an exchange has limited payment options then it may not be convenient for you to use it. Remember that purchasing cryptocurrencies with a credit card will always require identity verification and come with a premium price as there is a higher risk of fraud and higher transaction and processing fees. Purchasing cryptocurrency via wire transfer will take significantly longer as it takes time for banks to process.
  • Verification Requirements – The vast majority of the Bitcoin trading platforms both in the US and the UK require some sort of ID verification in order to make deposits & withdrawals. Some exchanges will allow you to remain anonymous. Although verification, which can take up to a few days, might seem like a pain, it protects the exchange against all kinds of scams and money laundering.

  • Geographical Restrictions – Some specific user functions offered by exchanges are only accessible from certain countries. Make sure the exchange you want to join allows full access to all platform tools and functions in the country you currently live in.

  • Exchange Rate – Different exchanges have different rates. You will be surprised how much you can save if you shop around. It’s not uncommon for rates to fluctuate up to 10% and even higher in some instances.

 

The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Today there are a host of platforms to choose from, but not all exchanges are created equal. This list is based on user reviews as well as a host of other criteria such as user-friendliness, accessibility, fees, and security. Here are ten of the best crypto exchanges in no specific order.

 

Bitbuy.ca
 

Bitbuy.ca is a Canadian owned and operated digital currency platform. Originally founded as InstaBT in 2013, the company’s mission is to provide convenient, dependable and secure access to Bitcoin and other digital currencies. Customer service, ease of use, and quick turnaround times for deposits and withdrawals are pillars of this platform. They cater to beginners as well as experienced traders, and are one of Canada’s quickest growing buy/sell platforms. A great choice for users looking to buy and hold crypto, or users looking for a reliable on-ramp to turn their fiat into crypto quickly and easily.

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Pros

  • Great customer service
  • Fast registration and verification
  • Quick processing of CAD deposits and withdrawals
  • Low fees

Cons

  • Only offers BTC, ETH, LTC, BCH
  • Only available to Canadians

 

ChangeNOW

ChangeNOW is a registration-free instant cryptocurrency exchange platform for limitless crypto conversions. ChangeNOW has been on the market for more than a year now and has earned a reputation for reliable service with great rates. The exchange platform does not require account creation, processing fast transactions for more than 170 cryptos, as well as fiat-to-crypto purchases. ChangeNOW stays honest with its customers and collects no hidden or inflated fees. The timing of the transaction remains rather short. Depending on the transaction volume, the processing speed can take as little as 2 minutes.

Pros

  • Registration-free – no account needed
  • More than 170 cryptocurrency coins and tokens listed – more than 36000 trading pairs
  • No limits – no maximum exchange amount
  • 2 cryptocurrency exchange flows: standard and fixed-rate
  • Convenient purchase with credit cards
  • 24/7 support
  • Mobile application

Cons

  • No leverage. ChangeNOW does not offer leveraged trading on cryptocurrencies

 

Coinbase

Backed by trusted investors and used by millions of customers globally, Coinbase is one of the most popular and well-known brokers and trading platforms in the world. The Coinbase platform makes it easy to securely buy, use, store and trade digital currency. Users can purchase bitcoins, Ether and now Litecoin from Coinbase through a digital wallet available on Android & iPhone or through trading with other users on the company’s Global Digital Asset Exchange (GDAX) subsidiary. GDAX currently operates in the US, Europe, UK, Canada, Australia, and Singapore. GDAX does not currently charge any transfer fees for moving funds between your Coinbase account and GDAX account. For now, the selection of tradable currencies will, however, depend on the country you live in. Check out the Coinbase FAQ and GDAX FAQ

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, security, reasonable fees, beginner-friendly, stored currency is covered by Coinbase insurance.
  • Cons: Customer support, limited payment methods, limited countries supported, non-uniform rollout of services worldwide, GDAX suitable for technical traders only.

 

Kraken

Founded in 2011, Kraken is the largest Bitcoin exchange in euro volume and liquidity and is a partner in the first cryptocurrency bank. Kraken lets you buy and sell bitcoins and trade between bitcoins and euros, US Dollars, Canadian Dollars, British Pounds and Japanese Yen. It’s also possible to trade digital currencies other than Bitcoin like Ethereum, Monero, Ethereum Classic, Augur REP tokens, ICONOMI, Zcash, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Ripple and Stellar/Lumens. For more experienced users, Kraken offers margin trading and a host of other trading features. Kraken is a great choice for more experienced traders. Check out the Kraken FAQ

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, decent exchange rates, low transaction fees, minimal deposit fees, feature rich, great user support, secure, supported worldwide.
  • Cons: Limited payment methods, not suitable for beginners, unintuitive user interface.

 

The Ultimate Guide To The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

 

Cex.io

Cex.io provides a wide range of services for using bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. The platform lets users easily trade fiat money with cryptocurrencies and conversely cryptocurrencies for fiat money. For those looking to trade bitcoins professionally, the platform offers personalized and user-friendly trading dashboards and margin trading. Alternatively, CEX also offers a brokerage service which provides novice traders an extremely simple way to buy bitcoin at prices that are more or less in line with the market rate. The Cex.io website is secure and intuitive and cryptocurrencies can be stored in safe cold storage. Check out the Cex.io FAQ

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, good mobile product, supports credit cards, beginner friendly, decent exchange rate, supported worldwide, API solutions for automated trading
  • Cons: Strict verification rules, fees vary with the payment method

 

The Ultimate Guide To The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

 

ShapeShift

ShapeShift is the leading exchange that supports a variety of cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Monero, Zcash, Dash, Dogecoin and many others. Shapeshift is great for those who want to make instant straightforward trades without signing up to an account or relying on a platform to hold their funds. ShapeShift does not allow users to purchase crypto’s with debit cards, credit cards or any other payment system. The platform has a no fiat policy and only allows for the exchange between bitcoin and the other supported cryptocurrencies. Visit the Shapeshift FAQ

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, beginner friendly, Dozens of Crypto’s available for exchange, fast, reasonable prices.
  • Cons: Average mobile app, no fiat currencies, limited payment options and tools.

 

Poloniex

Founded in 2014, Poloniex is one of the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges. The exchange offers a secure trading environment with more than 100 different Bitcoin cryptocurrency pairings and advanced tools and data analysis for advanced traders. As one of the most popular trading platforms with the highest trading volumes, users will always be able to close a trade position. Poloniex employs a volume-tiered, maker-taker fee schedule for all trades so fees are different depending on if you are the maker or the taker. For makers, fees range from 0 to 0.15%, depending on the amount traded.

For takers, fees range from 0.10 to 0.25%. There are no fees for withdrawals beyond the transaction fee required by the network. One of the unique tools on the Poloniex platform is the chat box which is constantly filled with user help and just about everything. Any user can write almost anything but inappropriate comments are eventually deleted by moderators. It can sometimes be hard to distinguish the good advice from the bad, but the Chatbox is a great tool that will keep you engaged.

 

  • Pros: fast account creation, feature rich, BTC lending, high-volume trading, user-friendly, low trading fees, open API.
  • Cons: Slow customer service, no fiat support.

 

The Ultimate Guide To The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

 

 

Bitstamp

Bitstamp is a European Union based bitcoin marketplace founded in 2011. The platform is one of the first generation bitcoin exchanges that has built up a loyal customer base. Bitstamp is well known and trusted throughout the bitcoin community as a safe platform. It offers advanced security features such as two-step authentication, multisig technology for its wallet and fully insured cold storage. Bitstamp has 24/7 support and a multilingual user interface and getting started is relatively easy. After opening a free account and making a deposit, users can start trading immediately. Check out the Bitstamp FAQ and the Fee Schedule

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, high-level security, worldwide availability, low transaction fees, good for large transactions.
  • Cons: Not beginner friendly, limited payment methods, high deposit fees, user interface.

The Ultimate Guide To The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

CoinMama

CoinMama is a veteran broker platform that anyone can visit to buy bitcoin or Ether using your credit card or cash via MoneyGram. CoinMama is great for those who want to make instant straightforward purchases of digital currency using their local currency. Although the CoinMama service is available worldwide, users should be aware that some countries may not be able to use all the functions of the site. CoinMama is available in English, German, French, Italian and Russian. Check out the CoinMama FAQ

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, beginner friendly, great user interface, good range of payment options, available worldwide, fast transaction time.
  • Cons: High exchange rates, a premium fee for credit card, no bitcoin sell function, average user support.

 

Bitsquare

Bitsquare is a user-friendly peer to peer exchange that allows you to buy and sell bitcoins in exchange for fiat currencies or cryptocurrencies. Bitsquare markets itself as a truly decentralized and peer to peer exchange that is instantly accessible and requires no need for registration or reliance on a central authority. Bitsquare never holds user funds and no one except trading partners exchange personal data. The platform offers great security with multisig addresses, security deposits and purpose-built arbitrator system in case of trade disputes. If you want to remain anonymous and don’t trust anyone, Bitsquare is the perfect platform for you. Check out the Bitsquare FAQ

 

  • Pros: Good reputation, secure & private, a vast amount of cryptocurrencies available, no sign-up, decent fees, open source, available worldwide, good for advanced traders.
  • Cons: Limited payment options, average customer support, not beginner friendly.

 

The Ultimate Guide To The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

LocalBitcoin

LocalBitcoin is a P2P Bitcoin exchange with buyers and sellers in thousands of cities around the world. With LocalBitcoins, you can meet up with people in your local area and buy or sell bitcoins in cash, send money through PayPal, Skrill or Dwolla or arrange to deposit cash at a bank branch. LocalBitcoins only take a commission of 1% from the sellers who set their own exchange rates. To ensure trading is secure, LocalBitcoins takes a number of precautions. To start, the platform rates each trader with a reputation rank and publicly displays past activities. Also, once a trade is requested, the money is held on LocalBitcoins’ escrow service. After the seller confirms the trade is completed the funds are released. If something does happen to go wrong, LocalBitcoins has a support and conflict resolution team to resolve conflicts between buyers and sellers. Check out LocalBitcoins FAQ

 

  • Pros: No ID required, beginner friendly, usually free, instant transfers, available worldwide.
  • Cons: Hard to buy large amounts of bitcoin, high exchanges rates.

 

LinkCoin

LinkCoin is an Over-The-Counter (OTC) cryptocurrency exchange that was developed by Yesbit Ltd in collaboration with Bibox. Based in Toronto Canada, the exchange processes transactions autonomously via smart contracts. Plus, with a fully functional website, and Android + iOs apps, the platform has the necessary technological infrastructure to provide users with a service that meets all of their investment needs. Linkcoin has 7 cryptocurrencies available for purchase (BTC, ETH, BCH, ETC, LTC, LKN, BIX) plus, with some of the indsutrie’s lowest transaction fees (zero buyer fees + 0.6% seller fees), they make buying and selling cryptocurrencies as affordable as possible. Accessibility is something Linkcoin also values. Which is why they accept interac e-Transfer, Bank Wire, AliPay and WeChat Pay. Users can also pay in either CAD, USD, CNY, JPY, or HKD.

  • Pros: No ID required, very cheap to sell, platform token, free to buy, high privacy and security, lots of payment options.
  • Cons: Lack of altcoins, limited volume, not beginner friendly.

Binance

If your focus is to conduct crypto-to-crypto trading, Binance is one of the best options. Ranked as one of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges worldwide, they provide you with impressive offerings along with an extremely low trading fee. Although the Binance platform is a young entrant into the market, it is rapidly growing, and holds a huge selection of altcoins with Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Tether pairings.

The exchange offers its own coin termed as BNB (Binance coin). Being a centralized exchange, you can get decent discounts while conducting trade with their token. Binance offers a standard trading fee of only 0.1% which can even be reduced further if the payment is made with in BNB.

  • Pros: Ubiquitous platform, platform token, very cheap to transact, available worldwide.
  • Cons: No fiat trading, limited payment options.

Gemini

Co-founded by Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, Gemini is a fully regulated licensed US Bitcoin and Ether exchange. That means Gemini’s capital requirements and regulatory standards are similar to a bank. Also, all US dollar deposits are held at a FDIC-insured bank and the majority of digital currency is held in cold storage. Gemini trades in three currencies, US dollars, bitcoin, and ether, so the platform does not serve traders of the plethora of other cryptocurrencies. The exchange operates via a maker-taker fee schedule with discounts available for high volume traders. All deposits and withdrawals are free of charge. The platform is only fully available to customers in 42 US states, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and the UK.

Check out Gemini’s FAQ

 

  • Pros: Security & Compliance, slick/minimalistic and user-friendly design, great analytics, high liquidity.
  • Cons: Limited currencies, small community, average customer support, limited worldwide availability, no margin trading.

The Ultimate Guide To The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Huobi

Located in  San Francisco, Huobi is operated by HBUS Holdco, Inc. (“HBUS”), a U.S. company and strategic partner of Huobi Global, one of the world’s largest digital asset trading and management service providers. At the time of writing, Huobi is only available to Chinese and US residents excluding those residing in Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Louisiana, New York, North Carolina, Hawaii, Vermont, Washington, and all U.S. Territories.  Huobi offers a plethora of token trading options (Over 50 pairings). As we all know, crypto doesn’t sleep and neither does Huobi as they offer their customers 24/7 free customer support.  Fees for USD trades are .1% regardless of being maker or taker, all crypto to crypto trades are .05%.


Pros:
24/7 Free Customer Support, High-Quality Analytics,  High Liquidity, Good reputation

Cons: Only Available to Chinese and Some US Residents, USD is the only Fiat Supported

Cryptocurrency Exchanges: Conclusion

Picking the ideal cryptocurrency exchange platform for your specific needs may be a difficult and time-consuming process. Remember to pay attention to the fees, reputation, security, verification processes, and geographical services an exchange platform has to offer. Remember that you are not limited to using only one cryptocurrency exchange. Hopefully, the information provided will assist you in deciding which exchange platform to use.

 

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1) Q: What is a cryptocurrency exchange?

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1) Q: What is a cryptocurrency exchange?
asked
1 answers
1 votes
1
A: Cryptocurrency exchanges are websites where you can buy, sell or exchange cryptocurrencies for other digital currency or traditional currency like US dollars or Euro.
answered

2) Q: What type of cryptocurrency exchanges are there?

1
2) Q: What type of cryptocurrency exchanges are there?
asked
1 answers
1 votes
1
Trading Platforms – These are websites that connect buyers and sellers and take a fee from each transaction. Direct Trading – These platforms offer direct person to person trading where individuals from different countries can exchange currency. Direct trading exchanges don’t have a fixed market price, instead, each seller sets their own exchange rate. Brokers – These are websites that anyone can visit to buy cryptocurrencies at a price set by the broker. Cryptocurrency brokers are similar to foreign exchange dealers.
answered

3) Q: What are the best exchanges?

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3) Q: What are the best exchanges?
asked
1 answers
1 votes
1
  1. Bitbuy
  2. ChangeNOW
  3. Coinbase
  4. Kraken
  5. Cex.io
  6. Shapeshift
  7. Poloniex
  8. Bitstamp
  9. Coinmama
  10. Bitsquare
  11. Localbitcoin
  12. Linkcoin
  13. Binance
  14. Gemini
  15. Huobi
answered
Please to comment
newest most voted

very good review and feedback… I have been using half of them,. if ok, would recommend this exchange – Trade Token X , one I could trust and managed by prof team. customer service is great here compared to the other ones… I had tough time with some of the top exchanges when it comes to Cust service responses.

It is strange that I didn’t see here a review about Lukki exchange. This is a fairly new exchange, but it has already gained trust and love from traders. From myself I can say that I am also very impressed after working with this platform. Of the merits: Convenient interface, meager commission, excellent customer service. But the main difference is that the Platform combines a monotonous trading process with an exciting gamification (pass the levels, earn scores, get rewards and monetize your achievements). I haven’t seen flaws yet. Time will tell. But judging by the previous projects of this team there is a great future.

That is great. I have also used many of them. But Lately, after the Binance Hack, I had become slightly sceptical about many of these exchanges in terms of security and control. I researched on new exchanges that are more secure. I came across XDAT. They are an EU compliant fiat to crypto exchange. They are easy to use, pretty secure and very transparent exchange. I have been trading on their exchange and wanted to add that they are quite responsive when it comes to customer support. I will recommend people to use XDAT as an exchange for trading and investing in crypto.

I used to have a Coinbase account and used it a lot in the beginnings along with my Blockchain account but now I prefer using either DEXs (though the term is not always used accurately) and accountless instant exchangers for dealing with crypto, where I transact from wallets where no one except for me can access the private keys. There are several options to choose from but my favorite and actually the one I use the most nowadays is ChangeNOW (second on the list above).

Investing in bitcoin can make one a billionaire in a short period of time. It also helps anyone to escape sudden inflation by investing or saving your money in a bitcoin wallet in order to escape failed government monetary policy. Bitcoins can be sent across the globe, no bank can block payments or close your account. There are lots of benefits investing in bitcoins, you just have to be very careful and smart while investing in bitcoin. So I will advice anyone who’s willing and want to make a huge profit in a short period of time in bitcoin to contact 24hoursbitcoinmining@gmail.com Also if you need consultancy about any digital currency, mining of bitcoin or retrieve stolen wallet, lost passwords contact digital currency I just benefited from his service few weeks ago and i’m very sure he’s willing and ready to help anyone too

Nice article! I trade on Binance and BitMEX with Quantower trading platform that gives me access to both exchanges. For professional analysis I use Volume Profiles, Order Flow surface for searching the most reliable levels for my Entry and Exit points.

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