How to Buy Bitcoin in 2018 – The Complete Beginner's Guide

April 9th, 2018 by Headshot Jacob Tuwiner


Bitcoin is a hot commodity these days – however, buying Bitcoin can be confusing.

With all of the different exchanges available, it’s hard to know which is best for you.

This guide was created for the new guy. You’ll learn about different Bitcoin exchanges, their pros and cons, and how to buy Bitcoin.

Logo Exchange Rating Buy
coinbase logo Coinbase 5/5 Visit Exchange
coinmama logo Coinmama 4.5/5 Visit Exchange 3.5/5 Visit Exchange
changelly logo Changelly 4/5 Visit Exchange
local-bitcoins LocalBitcoins 4/5 Visit Exchange

Taking a Closer Look

When it comes to buying Bitcoin, the exchanges listed in the table above are all exemplary choices – although, different exchanges’ fees, transactions times, and privacy levels vary.

This page is not meant to teach you how to buy Bitcoin, but rather which exchanges are best. If this is your first time buying, check out our step-by-step buying guide here.

Now we’re going to take a closer look at each exchange so you can make the most informed decision.

coinbase logo


1. Coinbase is heavily focused on simplicity, rendering it a great choice for first-time buyers. Buying bitcoin with Coinbase is quick and simple.

Their ease-of-use model comes at a cost: they take a 1.49% fee on bank transfers and a 3.99% fee on credit/debit card transfers. These fees add up quickly.

Coinbase has high transaction limits, though your limits will vary based on your account’s standing. Limits can be raised following a request.

You can earn $10 of free bitcoin when you buy more than $100 from Coinbase with this link.

For an in-depth tutorial on buying bitcoin from Coinbase, check out our guide.

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coinbase logo

2. is another viable option for those looking to buy Bitcoin with their credit or debit card.

They have a good track record, and are generally trusted by the community. Users can access the exchange from some parts of the United States, Europe, and parts of South America. does not support the following US states:

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Vermont, Virginia, Washington.

You’ll have to undergo a comprehensive application process, sometimes taking 30 minutes to finish.

On the bright side of things, the exchange has a low 0.2% trading fee, support for many countries, and a trusted reputation.

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coinmama logo


3. Coinmama is a popular and reputable exchange, allowing you to purchase Bitcoin with your credit or debit card. However, they charge a 6% fee, which is high among Bitcoin exchanges.

Thankfully, Coinmama has high transaction limits, up to $5,000 of Bitcoin per day or $20,000 of Bitcoin per month. You’ll receive your Bitcoin in a matter of minutes.

Coinmama is supported in nearly all countries without sanctions on cryptocurrency – it is also available to residents of most US states, including:

Arizona California Colorado Florida Illinois Indiana Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Massachusetts Maryland Michigan Missouri Montana Nevada New Jersey New Mexico North Carolina Pennsylvania South Carolina Tennessee Texas Virginia Wisconsin

Coinmama is a reliable exchange with an easy-to-use platform.

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changelly logo


4. Based in Prague, Changelly allows you to trade without registering at any exchange – no verification is needed.

The platform uses bots to make bids on popular exchange platforms, making bids and asks to generate the best rates on trading pairs.

Changelly accepts virtually all cryptocurrencies as payment, in addition to credit and debit cards – however, they charge high fees on credit/debit card purchases.

Unlike the previous exchanges on this list, Changelly allows you to seamlessly switch between Bitcoin and altcoins.

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local-bitcoins logo


5. Upon inception, LocalBitcoins was criticized for its legitimacy – now, it has a proven track record as a safe and reliable peer-to-peer exchange.

Although the exchange itself is secure, users must be careful of other users on the exchange. It is kind of like an eBay of crypto. The platform itself is solid, but you should check the reputation of those you are dealing with.

Most problems can be avoided by checking sellers’ ratings and avoiding those without a positive reputation.

LocalBitcoins does not require ID of any kind, rendering it an anonymous exchange. Buyers and sellers are free to use the payment method of their choosing.

The platform is supported nearly worldwide.

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