How to buy bitcoins?
The process of buying cryptocurrency (bitcoins) is easy, no matter the experience level, and can be compared to filling in a regular e-wallet (Neteller or other). The marketplace for trading bitcoins is called a Bitcoin Exchange in which individuals or legal entities can exchange (sell or buy) bitcoins using well-known financial products including credit cards, debit cards or electronic wallets. So the first step is to navigate to a reliable bitcoin exchange.
Buying bitcoins on the most popular bitcoin exchanges
Below is the list of the most trusted and feature-packed sites designed for digital currency traders. Apart from them, there are dozens and hundreds of other exchanges that can be popular in your jurisdiction or whereabouts. One of deciding factors in selecting a trading platform is application of fees for each transfer, deposit and trading fees and other charges that need to be paid by users.
One of the most trusted exchanges on the global market, Kraken (kraken.com) offers helpful tools for professional users yet it allows beginners to execute trades in a comprehensible way. It is first required to create an account, which can be optionally secured with a two-factor authentication. In most locations, the system requires a government issued ID and a scanned copy of a document to proof residence.
Then a user can fund the account with USD, EUR, JPY or CAD, all with very low fees. A user should click the Funding tab, select the preferred fiat currency and choose a deposit method (bank wire transfer or SEPA). There is a daily limit of $2000 and a monthly limit of $10,000 in Kraken but there is an option of increasing the funding limits. Before making a deposit, the system provides a long instruction that a user should follow to complete the transaction successfully. As a rule, bitcoins reach the bitcoin wallet within 2 to 3 working days. When bitcoins arrive, the user gets an email notification.
On logging in with the Kraken account, the fiat currency you have transferred will be displayed in the Deposit section and on the Kraken homepage. To make a bitcoin purchase, the user should enter the Trade – New Order tab, indicate the amount of bitcoins to buy and click the green confirmation button below. To keep track of the transaction progress, the user should click Orders tab that displays open and closed orders. When bitcoins arrive at the Kraken account, the user can now deposit the digital currency to the preferred online casino.
Based in California, Coinbase was established in 2012, in the earliest days of bitcoining. The exchange has over 30 million active users and boasts of over $130 billion traded. Coinbase is undoubtedly a trusted brand in the industry and is also a bitcoin wallet. To buy bitcoins and deposit them into an online casino, the user has to create a Coinbase account, which is done in a matter of minutes.
At the stage of account signup, a new user must specify their personal details, activate the new account via electronic mail and complete verification on Coinbase. After that, the user should link a bank account to the Coinbase account. Money can be sent to the Coinbase account from a credit/debit card (higher fees but instant transaction) or via bank transfer (lower fees but it takes a few days to get the funds).
When the funds are visible in the personal Coinbase dashboard, the user can make a bitcoin purchase. There is a weekly base limit of $2500 with the possibility of increasing it. Buying cryptocurrency (bitcoins) is almost instant yet the user should fill in some required information such as the amount of local currency to spend on the purchase. Once the ordered BTC amount appears in the wallet, the user can top up the online casino account with bitcoins. As said above, Coinbase also serves as a wallet but storing substantial sums of digital currency there is not recommended. To safeguard bitcoins from threats, the user can easily transfer BTC to other wallets.
One of the biggest fiat-crypto exchanges in the world, Binance has several hundreds of currency pairs and a low trading fee of 0.1%. Signup at Binance (binance.com) is simple and fast; moreover, they have a mobile app for Android and iPhone devices that can be downloaded from official app stores or by scanning a QR code on the Binance website. Anyway, to buy bitcoins, the user needs to create a Binance account. After successful registration, the user can buy bitcoins with a credit card and then forward BTC to an online casino that accepts bitcoins.
Luno.com is the only local South African peer-to-peer exchange platform recommended for crypto traders. It has provided service to about 3 million customers through web, Android or iOS and it has easy process of setting up a new user’s profile. It also offers online facilities for storing bitcoins but crypto security experts encourage users against keeping bitcoins on any exchange including Luno.
South African users are allowed to use only EFT as a deposit option and it comes free of charge. The advantage of this exchange is that SA customers may transfer ZAR straight from their bank account without having to get charged with exchange fees. Sending bitcoins to online casinos is also free, and this is another upside in Luno. The BTC/ZAR buy and sell transaction limits are ZAR130,000, with no restriction on the number of transactions.
Buying bitcoins for cash
ATMs have become a traditional tool for withdrawing money using a plastic debit or credit card. The availability of ATMs is universal as they are everywhere, except for truly remote areas. Bitcoin has gained a tremendous ground on the global financial environment, so there is no wonder that Bitcoin ATM locations have popped up recently around the globe to enable people to buy and sell bitcoins with ease. As of writing, there are 8 official bitcoin ATMs in South Africa, which can be found on special tracking sites, for example, coinatmradar.com. To buy bitcoins, a person should insert cash into an ATM and enter the wallet address (public key) where bitcoins will be sent to. An average fee for a transaction is 5 to 10%.
Buying bitcoins in peer-to-peer exchanges
P2P exchanges are a great way of purchasing crypto for cash yet it can be challenging and risky without using caution and checking details of the counterpart. The principle is that a bitcoin buyer and seller (both are individuals) agree directly on transaction terms. In this case, an online exchange holds seller’s bitcoins and serves as an escrow that releases money to the buyer only after the seller will have confirmed the receipt of payment. This kind of trade can also involve meeting in person, if desired. The most popular peer-to-peer bitcoin exchange operating in South Africa is localbitcoins.com.
Advantages of P2P deals:
- This is the most anonymous way of buying bitcoins. Though P2P exchanges do not ask for personal details, a party involved in the trade is entitled to require identity verification of his counterpart
- Transactions are easy to organize and fast because of no verification that would otherwise take some time
- Local Bitcoins allows for virtually any payment option such as Skrill, Neteller, national bank transfer, Paypal, cash deposits and others.
The most evident drawback to meeting personally is a risk of being scammed. To avoid issues, a bitcoin buyer should deal with sellers who have good feedback in the exchange and a high number of confirmed trades. Another piece of advice is to meet in public places to finalize a transaction.
Key takeaways on how to buy bitcoins in South Africa
Online casino players who seek for a convenient method for depositing funds into a gambling site should consider bitcoins, which are one of the most private ways of topping up a casino account. There are three major methods of buying bitcoins: BTC exchanges, local bitcoin ATMs and peer-to-peer transactions, each having their intrinsic virtues and shortcomings.