Guide: How to Buy Bitcoin
Are you interested in cryptocurrencies but unsure how to buy Bitcoin? Then you’ve come to the right place.
Bitcoin is here to stay. If you didn’t already know, now is the time to learn how Bitcoin and other cryptos are revolutionizing the global financial system.
From blockchain-based provably fair games to a hyped investment to an alternative to regular currency, Bitcoin can do many, many things. If you want to get involved, especially with crypto casinos, this guide will help you out immeasurably.
That’s because the crypto world can seem confusing to beginners, especially if you’re looking to actually use your coins and not just invest them.
For example – what are brokers, gas fees, wallets, and blockchains?
Once you’ve read through the key points of this article, you should know all of that and more. Even if you don’t want or need to learn everything yourself, our step-by-step guide will get you up and running with BTC so you’ll have a smooth crypto casino experience.
Concepts to know when buying Bitcoin
Before we get into the step-by-step, you might find it useful if we go through a few key terms and concepts you’ll hear all the time in the Bitcoin world. So, here’s a quick glossary of crypto terminology for those not in the know:
- Cryptocurrency – An online digital currency independent of banks and other traditional financial institutions. Cryptocurrencies are based on blockchain technology (see below).
- Blockchain – This is the keystone technology of Bitcoin and other cryptos. A blockchain is a log of all the transactions of the currency. However, instead of being stored in a central bank, it is distributed among the owners. Anyone can see the transactions, but they’re completely free and anonymous.
- Fiat currencies – This is the crypto sphere’s name for traditional modern currencies like USD, EUR, or GBP. The name comes from the Latin word “fiat,” which means decree or authority, as the government (usually) plays a big role in deciding a currency’s value.
- Crypto Wallet – The digital address and location where your crypto is stored. If someone wants to send you crypto, they need your address, and if you’re sending them crypto, you need theirs. A wallet can also be offline, such as a hard drive or USB device, but you’ll need to put your Bitcoin in an online wallet to trade or buy things with it.
- Crypto broker or exchange – A third-party platform that simplifies the process of getting a wallet and buying crypto. Examples include Binance, Coinbase, and Gate.io.
Security and cryptocurrencies
As with online life, in general, it’s good to follow a few key rules to keep your Bitcoin safe. BTS is inherently safe, as it’s practically impossible to “hack” the blockchain.
You hold a public key for each transaction. Anyone can see it, but it isn’t attached to your account. This is part of the transparent and free nature of Bitcoin, and it makes the speed and anonymity of the network possible. It is totally safe.
However, your Bitcoin wallet also holds a private key. If this key is leaked, things get a lot less secure. So, make sure all your passwords are strong and don’t give your public wallet details out to anyone.
You should also be 100% certain to check your transactions before you send them. If you make a mistake, there’s no bank involved to cancel or refund the transaction – so double-check your addresses and amounts!
When it comes to buying Bitcoin, the easiest and most secure way is to visit a third-party broker like Coinbase, Binance, or Gate.io. They create a wallet for you and offer a simple interface to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptos using fiat currencies.
If you’re more technically-minded, you can even create your own wallet for more customization. Or, you could store your BTC on a physical hard drive or USB, although, of course, you won’t be able to send it to a crypto casino from there.
If you do get your own independent wallet, be super careful with your password or physical security. Independent wallets have no password reset function. If you don’t trust yourself and think you might end up like this guy losing a £50 million wallet to the local waste dump, best use a broker!
1. Register with a crypto broker/exchange
Crypto brokers, also called exchanges, are third-party sites that make it easy for people to buy, sell, and trade cryptos like Bitcoin. Bitcoin is found at every single exchange, as it is the original and most popular cryptocurrency.
But which exchange do you choose? Well, the main ones (Binance, Coinbase, etc.) are super convenient and are sometimes even integrated with casinos for one-click transactions. However, this convenience comes at a possible cost. Namely, these exchanges ask you for ID and other information when you sign up.
If you really want to keep your crypto transactions 100% anonymous, you can use an independent crypto wallet. These are a bit more technical to set up and use, but you’ll be following the real cryptocurrency dream of independence and anonymity.
For most casually interested people, though, a mainstream broker or exchange will be the best and easiest route.
Whatever method you choose, the usual tips – using a strong password and enabling two-factor authentication – are still applicable.
Registering at a broker is super easy and shouldn’t take more than five minutes. If you live in certain territories, regulators may demand exchanges ask for more documentation from you, so watch out for that.
2. Select a payment method
The next step is to purchase Bitcoin using your fiat currency. If you chose one of the biggest third-party exchanges, you might have to wait 24 hours to have your identity confirmed.
Once you’re confirmed (or if your exchange doesn’t require as much information), you can buy up some Bitcoins. Let’s go!
The most straightforward way is to use your bank card. In most countries, this should be as easy as buying anything else online. It could take seconds. However, in some countries – and with some banks – you could face a delay of 24 hours or more on cryptocurrency purchases.
Banks don’t like the challenge cryptocurrencies pose to their centralized control, so they can be suspicious of crypto purchases – especially if you’re a high-stakes player purchasing large amounts.
Also, make sure you buy the crypto you really want. If you buy Bitcoin now and later decide you want Ethereum instead, you could lose out on transfer fees.
Lastly, you want to watch out for fees. Consider checking various exchanges to see which comes with the lowest fee. Charges and fees can add up over repeated purchases, so if you have the cash on hand, consider buying more BTC than you think you’re going to use for a single gambling session.
3. Complete the Purchase and Use Your Coins
So, you’ve acquired your wallet and purchased your Bitcoin – what next?
Outside of gambling, you can spend your Bitcoins on loads of online shopping sites, use them to buy NFTs, or simply leave them as an investment.
Cryptos and Bitcoin have been on a massive upward trend in value since 2012. Yes, there have been dips, but generally, crypto has been a sound investment so far.
Our advice is to spend some (and maybe win some more gambling) but also save a good chunk as an investment. After all, what’s the point of a currency you don’t want to spend?
4. Store your Bitcoins securely
Bitcoins are money, so be careful with them. If you’re only going to sit on them as an investment, you don’t need much more than a wallet at an exchange.
If you’re slightly more serious about security or want to commit to the crypto ideal of independence and anonymity, you might want to look into getting a crypto wallet of your own.
A third-party site won’t ask for your personal info, and you’ll directly own the wallet after that.
Imagine Coinbase or Binance went down. Very unlikely, but it could happen. If all your crypto was on a wallet through their site, you wouldn’t be able to get to it until the exchange was back up.
Having your own wallet solves this, but you need to be a bit more careful with security.
There are two types of your own wallet you can have: online and offline. We discuss them both below to help you make a choice.
Online Bitcoin Wallets
If you’ve never used Bitcoin before, this is the method you should stick with. Online wallets are super convenient because you can access them on your mobile anywhere, and they’re easy to use.
Online wallets are very secure, but nothing is 100%. If your internet or your chosen exchange site goes down, then you won’t be able to access them. To make online wallets as secure as possible, ensure that you:
- Have a strong and unique password using special characters, numbers, and both lowercase and uppercase letters.
- Enable two-factor authentication with your phone or email address.
- Don’t show anyone your private wallet key.
If you’re looking to dip your toes in and gamble with 0.001 BTC or similar, you can probably skip ahead here. But if you might buy a little more, extra security is always worth considering.
If you invest in large amounts of crypto, it might be a good idea to get a physical wallet for that extra layer of security.
After all, you don’t want all your eggs in one basket. Plus, if you’re planning on gambling with your crypto, having some of it in an offline wallet reduces the temptation to spend more than you would later be happy with. Think of an offline wallet as a savings account for your online wallet.
Physical Crypto Wallets
Offline crypto wallets place your private wallet key on a USB memory stick or external hard drive.
Offline wallets are completely and 100% safe from viruses, hackers, fraudsters, and any other online threats. You can plug the storage device into a computer at any time and open the files to check your balance.
However, you can’t spend your BTC or send it anywhere without first reconnecting it back to your online wallet. Not all USB drives are suitable for Bitcoin, either, so you may need to order one.
There’s an even simpler version out there that will just give you a key, and you’ll write it down on a piece of paper. Then, when you come back to the website, you’ll use that key to log in. This is old-school-cool but not hugely practical for a big investment, and you could easily lose track of it.
We recommend sticking to a hard drive – but each to their own.
A combination is the best choice
Offline and physical ways of storing your crypto wallet keys are safe because they’re not connected to the internet in any way. They can’t be hacked, affected by viruses, or phished out of you.
However, they take a bit more effort than setting up an online wallet. You’ll need to either create your own independent wallet and then set it up with a suitable USB or hard drive or find one of the few exchanges that offer this feature.
5. Sell your Bitcoins
If you eventually decide you want to cash out some of your Bitcoins, this is also super easy. The most convenient way is to sell them through your crypto exchange service.
However, you can also sell them through exchanges if you have an independent wallet – which is quite cool.
You can exchange BTC for other cryptos or for fiat currencies. Most exchanges offer dozens of options in both. Just remember that fees can add up, so try to cash out as much as you can at once instead of going for multiple transactions.
You should also compare the price of a BTC when you bought it to the price at the time of sale to make sure you’re not down. If you are, it might be worth holding onto your coins for a while longer.
Different payment methods when buying Bitcoin
Now you know how to buy Bitcoin, we should also tell you a bit about the different payment methods you can use to make your purchase. These short guides will tell you everything you need to know about each one so you can make the right choice for you.
How to buy Bitcoin with PayPal
PayPal is known all over the world and is the most popular e-wallet on the market. PayPal can be used by businesses or friends to send money – and also to buy Bitcoin.
You can actually purchase Bitcoin directly through PayPal. However, as one of the world’s biggest companies, PayPal is super picky about who it works with, so you’re not too likely to find PayPal payments at many crypto exchanges.
Why does PayPal want you to go through it? Because it will charge you. PayPal charges a conversion fee, and (unlike a broker), it sets its own exchange rates. This means you could lose out on the optimum deal.
On the plus side, PayPal is super easy to set up and link with your bank account. It’s also accepted at almost every online shopping destination, and you can directly pay for stuff in Bitcoins through it, too.
Still, you might get charged and lose out on the exchange rate. You also can’t send your BTC from PayPal directly to a wallet, which isn’t ideal.
On the whole, PayPal is very convenient and easy to use, but you probably won’t be getting the best deals when buying BTC here.
How to buy Bitcoin with a card
Buying BTC with a bank card is the easiest and most common method. Crypto exchanges accept cards and make sure they’re easy to use. Purchases usually go through instantly.
Of course, you can also use a credit card. However, we recommend avoiding this. Bitcoin is a volatile currency, and investing in anything on credit is never a good idea. Nobody wants debt, and there’s no such thing as a 100% reliable investment.
Plus, every exchange and broker accepts debit cards with no issues. Credit cards can sometimes cause problems because exchanges need to make extra checks and pay more fees to use them. On top of that, some of those fees might be passed on to you as well.
Overall, debit cards are an A+ method for buying Bitcoins, but we can’t recommend credit cards as a sensible option.
How to buy Bitcoin with Trustly
Trustly is a popular method of paying online that works as an intermediary between you, the bank, and the seller. It can turn shopping from your bank into a one-click process without the need to use any cards or enter any details.
Quite a few exchanges, especially those based in Europe, now offer Trustly. Once you have a Trustly account linked to your bank, buying BTC from a broker will take less than a minute.
How to use a Bitcoin ATM
Bitcoin ATMs were big news a few years back. They still exist! Right now, major global cities should house a dozen or so Bitcoin ATMs. For example, New York and London feature around 20 each.
Of course, they don’t work like normal fiat currency ATMs. You can’t get physical bitcoins, as then, they couldn’t be tracked on the blockchain and wouldn’t be a digital currency anymore!
Instead, you deposit cash or pay by card, and you can buy Bitcoins for transfer to your BTC wallet.
If you live in a big city (1+ million people), there should be at least one BTC ATM somewhere within a few miles of you. Good luck!
How to buy Bitcoin via a P2P exchange
If you want to stick to the real crypto enthusiast’s ideal way of doing things, you want to A) have your own independent wallet and B) only buy crypto from shared exchanges.
This way, there’s absolutely no third-party involvement – all transactions happen between users.
P2P sites let you put up a purchase order and then wait for someone to sell you their Bitcoins at that price. You can also trade BTC for other cryptos or fiat currencies.
These P2P sites can be libertarian and free without many rules or checks, so be careful. It’s best to find a trusted exchange with user ratings, two-factor authentication, and other security measures.
If you know what you’re doing, though, P2P exchanges are the truest and purest crypto experience!
Buying Bitcoin is super easy. If you want to do it in the best way possible, it takes some research – but it’s still simple!
Our recommended path is to find a trusted exchange or broker and pay by debit card. If you’re only buying small amounts, this should be fine for you.
However, if you’re looking to buy multiple whole Bitcoins, then we recommend you sign up for an online wallet that lets you transfer to a physical drive. From there, send a good chunk of your coins to that wallet and onto the external drive.
This offers you ultimate security while you keep the rest in your exchange wallet for easy use online.
And with that, we’re finished! But of course, you’re not. Your crypto journey has only just begun. Stay safe, enjoy, and good luck!
You can buy Bitcoin in a number of different ways, but the fastest and easiest way for most people is through a crypto broker like Binance or Coinbase.
Yes. It is 100% legal to buy, own and sell Bitcoins. However, you may need to pay tax if you make a profit.