Where do I start?
It’s a lot easier these days to buy Bitcoin and alternative cryptocurrencies. But since cryptocurrencies are not yet regulated, it’s still considered the wild west when it comes to buying and storing your digital funds. So the first thing you have to ask yourself is, why do I want to get into this volatile space?
Why do I want Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies?
It’s obvious that we here at F4 are big fans of Bitcoin and also know that some alternative coins will become important in the future. But we don’t want to be biased because 99% of the coins available today are worthless.
It’s pure speculation, so please make sure you have done your research and that you believe in Bitcoin and the altcoins you are investing in. Otherwise, there are other ways to invest your money.
Where do I buy Bitcoin and other Alt-coins?
No matter what type of wallet you decide to store your crypto. You will need to use a credit card (not prepaid) and verify your identity for government compliance. This is known as KYC (know your customer). Part of the onboarding process is submitting your valid identification to the company selling you the digital currency.
The only way to buy crypto without giving your identity is through a Physical Bitcoin ATM.
These machines accept your local currency in cash and then sends the crypto to a wallet address of your choice. Just make a search for Bitcoin ATM in your area and see if and where they are located. Or you can try this Bitcoin ATM Search Engine.
I do know first hand that the fees and exchange rates are terrible, but that’s the price you have to pay for your personal privacy.
The easiest way to buy Bitcoin and other alt coins is through an exchange that is supported in your region. First, make a Google search for a cryptocurrency exchange in “your country”.
Since crypto is not regulated in most countries, you’ll have to make sure the exchange is supported in your region so that you can link your local bank to it.
Here are some popular international exchanges that may work for you:
Once you’ve completed the KYC process and purchased some crypto, you can keep them on that exchange or send them to your own personal non-custodial wallet for safe-keeping.
Many non-custodial wallets now have third-party crypto on-ramp payment gateways built into the software. Some of these crypto on-ramp gateways are the Ramp Network and MoonPay. You will need to submit your identity information, and you can buy crypto directly from them as well.
Here’s a shortlist of some non-custodial wallets that offer third-party payment gateways.
Non-custodial vs Custodial wallets. What’s the difference? More on this here.
Custodial Exchanges allow you to make limit order trades. This means you can set the price you want to pay for an asset and if/when the price of that asset reaches your limit price, the exchange will make that trade for you.
Exchanging or swapping within a non-custodial wallet or a crypto gateway will sell you coins at the current price using a market order instead of a limit order. You can learn more about order types here on CoinDesk.
This means if you’re making many trades, it’s best to do this on a custodial exchange like Binance for example. You’ll get the price you want and pay fewer transaction fees. Non-custodial wallets are best for long term holding.
The most important part of cryptocurrency is learning how to keep your funds safe. I have received hundreds of tickets of people losing their funds because they didn’t understand how the technology works.
They didn’t make a backup, they sent funds to a wrong address, or they were manipulated into sending funds to a scammer. It’s the hardest tickets to respond to because it’s so preventable if you simply take the time to learn.
We have a couple of great articles here to help you keep your crypto safe.
If you already know that you want to buy some crypto, don’t worry so much. Go ahead and jump right in. Just make sure to start small. I guarantee you will make mistakes, so experiment with a small amount for a while.
Make a purchase, then try sending and receiving crypto to another wallet or to a friend. Create a non-custodial wallet and find out what all the hype is about.
If you run into any trouble, let us know. We’ll be happy to help!
Questions? Need more help? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org We promise to get back to you as soon as we can!