How to Buy Cryptocurrency

So, you are ready to buy cryptocurrency . You may have read about blockchain technology and are convinced that it really is the future. Or maybe you’ve watched a friend get rich off bitcoin and still berate yourself for not doing the same.

Either way, buying Bitcoin or one of the many other cryptocurrencies can be easy and even fun. Just don’t expect to make a million dollars overnight, and only invest the money you can live without . With that said, here’s what you need to know to get started.

Buying Cryptocurrency with Coinbase

If you are interested in buying Bitcoin or one of the other better known cryptocurrencies, your best bet is CoinBase, which also supports Bitcoin Cash, Ether, and Litecoin. The popular digital exchange is easy to use and widely trusted, although it does go missing sometimes when trading is particularly frantic.

You can download the Coinbase app to your phone or create an account at coinbase.com. Agree to the terms and you will be greeted with a chart showing the recent rise and fall of bitcoins and other currencies. The next thing you need to do is add a way to shop by clicking the Buy button in the app or by clicking the Buy / Sell tab on the website. From here, you can connect a debit or credit card for a quick small investment, or add a direct line to your bank account for large purchases and sales that can take 4-5 days to process.

With this set, click the Buy button again. Select the type of cryptocurrency you are buying and enter the amount of money you want to spend in USD. You will see how much it will be in Bitcoin (or whatever cryptocurrency you buy) along with a small commission from Coinbase . Finally, confirm the transaction by clicking the Buy button and you’re done. (If this is your first time, your bank may call you and ask to confirm your purchase before making a purchase. So stay tuned.)

Buying cryptocurrency without Coinbase

If you want to buy Ripple or one of the other promising cryptocurrencies, you will have to go beyond Coinbase . One popular option is Kraken , which supports bitcoin and ether, as well as smaller currencies like Ripple and Stellar .

Using Kraken is a little more complicated than Coinbase and you’ll want to do it via the website (there is an iOS app, but it’s not very good). The first thing you need to do is set up an account here . When it becomes active, click on “Account” and select “Pass Verification”. You will need to provide your name, phone number and address, choosing at least Level 2. You may also need a valid government issued photo ID and proof of residency (this is Level 3 ) to actually withdraw money from the exchange, whichever where you and your bank are located:

You will then need to deposit money into your Kraken account. To do this, go to the “Account” section, then “Funding” and then “Deposit”. From here, follow the instructions on the Kraken website to activate bank transfer before sending money from your bank account.

You are now ready to purchase. Click on Account, then Trade, and then New Order. Then select the cryptocurrency you want and the government-backed currency you use to buy it from the drop-down menu in the top right corner (you can also use Bitcoin to buy smaller currencies like Ripple). Select “Simple” and under it click “Buy”. Then enter the desired amount of whatever cryptocurrency you buy and press the green button to confirm.

Again, you might get a call from your bank to confirm the purchase, but that’s about it. You just bought a cryptocurrency.

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