How to Buy Bitcoins with Cash
It’s really easy to learn how to buy bitcoins with cash because there are so many bitcoin peer-to-peer exchanges. Our P2P bitcoin guide will teach you the best ways to buy bitcoins with cash, so keep reading!
Being the first cryptocurrency in the world, bitcoin is a breath of a fresh air for many people who want to bypass difficulties in currency exchange and money transfer when purchasing. Cash payments in exchange for BTC are quite easy and this article will show you various ways of getting bitcoin fast, secured and with a low fee (especially when you decide to buy bitcoins online).
- What are my options for buying bitcoin with cash?
- How can I purchase BTC with cash in ATMs?
- How can you trade in web-based platforms with cash?
- How can I find the nearest locations of BTC cash trade near me?
- Can bitcoin be exchanged with cash?
Are some of the many questions that this article will answer with detailed step-by-step guidelines.
- Cash Bitcoin Exchanges
- Guide: How to Buy Bitcoins with Cash
- Tutorial: Buying Bitcoins with Cash on LocalBitcoins
- How to Get BTC for Cash on BitQuick?
- Guide: How to Get BTC at LibertyX
- Purchase Bitcoins for Cash at Wall of Coins
- Order BTC for Cash through Bitit
- How to Find Traders Near Me with Mycelium?
- Getting Bitcoins from ATMs
- Other Ways to Get Bitcoin for Cash
- Face-to-Face Trades
- How Does Peer-to-Peer Exchange Work?
- Buying BTC for Cash: FAQ
- How to Avoid Frauds and Scams
Cash Bitcoin Exchanges
Being an electronic currency, there are several things you should know about bitcoin-cash transactions. To start with, bitcoin exists purely on the internet, meaning you cannot hold it physically in your hands.
|BTC Exchange||Countries||Payment Methods||Quick Take|
|Coin ATM Radar||Worldwide incl. USA, Canada, EU, UK, Australia||Cash Deposit, ATM||A global map of bitcoin ATMs. The most private way to buy bitcoins with cash worldwide (no verification of ID).|
|BitQuick||USA, Canada, EU, UK||Cash||Popular cash bitcoin exchange. Fees are higher that average.|
|Wall of Coins||USA||Cash||Peer-to-peer bitcoin exchange that allows to buy and sell bitcoins easily.|
|Remitano||Worldwide incl. USA||Cash, Bank Transfer||New P2P bitcoin escrowed service, where you can buy/sell bitcoin locally (very similar to LocalBitcoins).|
|Coinfinity||EU, UK||Cash||Austria's leading bitcoin broker that offers services for consumers (buying bitcoin with cash) and businesses (accepting bitcoin payments).|
|LocalBitcoins||Worldwide incl. USA, Canada, EU, UK, Australia||Cash, Bank Transfer, PayPal, Gift Cards||The most private way to buy bitcoins in Japan through a P2P exchange. Operates worldwide!|
|LibertyX||USA||Cash Deposit||Buy bitcoin with cash instantly at thousands of local stores. LibertyX is the largest nationwide network for buying BTC with cash.|
Buying and selling bitcoin with cash, on the other hand, is quite possible and easy. All you have to do is to either pay a cash deposit to a bitcoin seller bank account (web-based) or locate nearest ATM machine from you and purchase bitcoins at the price the ATM provider offers (location-based).
Buying bitcoin with cash is definitely easiest with ATM transactions but not necessarily the best way due to the high fees. Both processes have numerous providers, pros, and cons which shall be covered by this article in greater detail.
Dubbed as fastest, easiest and most secure bitcoin peer-to-peer exchange, LocalBitcoins offers a single-market platform for bitcoin buying and selling transactions. It is a marketplace where users (also called traders) buy and sell bitcoin. These traders advertise themselves through posts that contain buy/sell price and payment methods available for traders who are browsing these ads, searching for the best available offer.
- offers private transactions;
- globally available;
- no buying/selling limitations.
- high number of scams;
- cash payments are usually more expensive than other payment methods.
Similar marketplace for bitcoin transfers as buy/sell orders vary in price and traders search for the best available option at the moment of search. The buying/selling processes are basically the same as in LocalBitcoins; traders upload orders of bitcoin amounts for a set price and interested users would click to either buy or sell bitcoins.
- very low number of scams;
- 0% fee for bitcoin sellers.
- available in the US only;
- 2% cash fee;
- ID confirmation required.
Apart from web-based free governed marketplaces, the bitcoins could be also purchased physically at LibertyX ATM machines. The bitcoin price is valued by the LibertyX in terms of daily market price trends. The company offers mobile tracking system of the nearest ATM machine, while the only payment method available is through cash or through PIN/Gift Cards, issued by LibertyX.
- secure payment;
- highly private;
- instantaneous purchase process.
- available in the US only;
- lack of competitive buying/selling offers;
- ATM availability could be scarce.
Wall of Coins
Web-based bitcoin platform, very similar with LocalBitcoins and BitQuick as it is freely governed buying/selling market of bitcoins. Traders post orders at the competitive price while users search for best available options through manual search. It is available in 12 countries, US included and the platform offers cash payment through physical bank branch payments.
- no buying/selling limitations;
- no ID verification needed;
- $5 is minimum limit of purchase.
- fees are hidden as part of the purchase price;
- available in 12 countries only.
The Bitit is a bitcoin provider that offers cash payment through Neosurf, Cashlib & Flexepin prepaid vouchers. Through ID verification, limits go up to $10,000 per week for cash payments, while bitcoin purchase price is evaluated by the provider according to the general market prices.
- instantaneous purchase;
- available globally;
- high limits.
- ID verification required;
- high cash payment fees (7.9%-10%).
Mycelium Local Trader
The Mycelium is a web-based market, similar to LocalBitcoins and BitQuick, in which traders create buying/selling orders based on the market-driven prices. The website offers on-site bitcoin wallet to ensure fair practice by traders engaged in transactions, thought it is important to note that ID verification is needed. The transaction itself is carried at the agreed time and locations between buyer and seller with Mycelium offering communication means only.
- secure payment;
- local GPS trading;
- ranking of users’ performance.
- transaction fee connected with size of the order, not value;
- not too user-friendly.
Apart from web-based platforms, another way to purchase bitcoins with cash is ATM. There are numerous providers of the bitcoin ATM services around the globe. These providers offer liquidity of bitcoin through either their own capital or through bitcoin exchange in order to steadily supply the demand in the market. Currently, there are around 600 bitcoin ATMs in the world with most famous manufacturers being Genesis Coin, Lamassu, General Bytes and BitAccess.
Figure 1: Market Share per ATM Manufacturer
- high security;
- instant purchase;
- high transactions fees (from 6%);
- scarce availability;
- services reliability.
Guide: How to Buy Bitcoins with Cash
There are two ways of buying bitcoin with cash: through web-based platforms and through ATMs. The web platforms offer a variety of bitcoin proposals and vary in fees and transaction process length thus you need to undergo certain steps before you decide on how and where you would convert your cash into BTC. How to buy bitcoins with cash:
- Identify bitcoin providers and market platforms such as LocalBitcoins, BitQuick and Mycelium, ATM providers such as Genesis Coin and Lamassu, and web-based bitcoin providers such as LibertyX and Bitit.
- Analyze all options in terms of locations, fees, speed, and security. You can use a comparison table below.
- Compare different bitcoin providers and choose the best option available for your region based on your ZIP code.
|BTC Exchange||Countries||ID Required||Fees|
|Coin ATM Radar||Global including USA||No||0%|
|BitQuick||USA, Canada, EU, UK||Yes||2%|
|Wall of Coins||12 Countries including USA||No||±1%|
|Remitano||Global including USA||Sometimes||0.5%|
|LocalBitcoins||Global including USA||Sometimes||1%|
Tutorial: Buying Bitcoins with Cash on LocalBitcoins
Register your trading account at LocalBitcoins and fill out the simple ID form shown below:
Once registered, go to the main page and locate the search box where you choose your currency, location and desired cash payment method.
Now choose the most optimal bitcoin offer from the list and take care of the offer to be from a trader with good reputation and loads of past trades. For more information, click „Buy”.
Upon pressing „Buy“, more information will be displayed about the offer, including the terms of the trade which you should read to make sure they are agreeable to you.
Next step, in blue box, enter the amount of BTC you wish to purchase, send a message to a trader and then click the „Send trade request“. With payment done, click „Mark payment complete“ and wait for a trader to verify the transaction. Once verified, you shall receive bitcoins in your wallet instantly.
How to Get BTC for Cash on BitQuick?
Step 1. Go to their BitQuick’s main page and click “Buy Bitcoin Now”.
Step 2. Enter the “Quick Buy” option and add value in either USD or BTC to get a list of banks and their offers (lowest prices are shown first).
Step 3. Once you choose the bank, fill out email address, phone number and BTC address to receive verification PIN code in your mail.
Step 4. Once you verify the PIN Code, slick “SEND VERIFICATION” button and go to your bank of choice in the location near you to make payment and get the receipt. Upload that receipt in BitQuick and wait for BTC arrival within 3 hours in your e-wallet.
Guide: How to Get BTC at LibertyX
Step 1. Download the app from either Apple or Google Stores on your smartphone and open the application.
Step 2. Enter the amount you are looking for and mapped offers shall come up based upon your location.
Step 3. Choose which one suits you and tap “SELECT THIS LOCATION”, from which you will get more information about the trader like store’s working hours, fees, phone number and instructions of buying BTC.
Step 4. Now you have to create an account in LibertyX or login with Facebook, link your phone number from which you’ll receive LibertyX code. At the store, show the code and finalize the transaction.
Purchase Bitcoins for Cash at Wall of Coins
Step 1. Enter the main page and click “Buy” option.
Step 2. A window will open with options to put the dollar value of BTC you want and click “NEXT” button to see lists of offers available in your area.
Once you select the offer, review the payment details, leave your BTC wallet details and your phone number and head over to the bank to make cash payment. Hand the teller your deposit slip and text Wall of Coins to inform them of your purchase finalization. Seller verifies your payment and releases the BTC to your e-wallet.
Order BTC for Cash through Bitit
Enter the Bitit store map to find the nearest location that suits your needs. Choose among the three vouchers depending on your location and head over to meet with the cashier of the store.
Ask for the needed voucher and pay upfront to receive a receipt and fill-out form where you would specify your BTC address and other details needed for an instant transaction.
How to Find Traders Near Me with Mycelium?
Download the app and click “Buy / Sell Bitcoin” option.
Enter your location and search for traders that are near you and with a good reputation (star rating).
Select the seller to get more information like contacts and trade instructions and press “Buy” if you are agreeable with conditions and meet with the trader at the agreed location. The trader should verify the receipt in their wallet and your transaction is over when confidence bar has reached 100%.
Getting Bitcoins from ATMs
Through ATM machines, buying bitcoin with cash was never easier than now. With over 600 ATM locations globally, the service provides instantaneous and secured service with minimum privacy breaches for BTC buyers.
By using bitcoin ATM map with your Smartphone, it is easy to locate the nearest ATM from you, check its details, head over and purchase bitcoins with cash. However, it does not mean ATMs do not have drawbacks – fees are high, between 5% and 10% depending on the manufacturer and service is not always available.
Bitcoin ATM Map
As shown in the previous section, the Bitcoin ATM map holds powerful tools for a location of the nearest ATM while offering the description of services and fees for each pinned ATM.
The description also shows listings and BTC prices that are currently used for cash processing. The map itself also provides the service of directions, giving the fastest possible routes for the buyers.
Search by BTC ATM Locations
Buying bitcoins with cash is also available through ATMs, so the first step is to locate one near you. Go to the Bitcoin ATM map and select the ATM location near you.
Choose a Bitcoin ATM
Once you have located the nearest ATM machine, click on “Read More” to see the details of the ATM manufacturer, working hours and fees.
If you are satisfied with the procedure and fees, head over to the ATM while it is open for transactions and buy BTC with cash.
Other Ways to Get Bitcoin for Cash
Apart from web-based platforms, peer-to-peer exchanges and ATM / bank purchases, there are also exchange businesses that are more than happy to trade your bitcoins with cash. The examples of them are CEX.io and 24/7 Exchange, who offer quite simple purchasing process for their traders.
First, go to their website and select cash payment option which will give you the e-receipt with details of the purchase, BTC price, and fees. Then, within next 5 days, go to your local bank, finalize the payment and receive your BTC in your e-wallet as soon as a bank processes the payment. Take into account that fees are relatively high compared to market web-based platforms, and could go between 7% and 10%.
Face-to-Face trades are often more financially attractive than ATM or store purchases, though they are less secure and could provide various scamming hazards on the trader. To overcome the potential issues, you should:
- check the seller’s profile on various platforms; does he have history rankings, etc.;
- check the latest bitcoin price if you have not reached agreement to ensure fair trade;
- meet at public location such as coffee or mall agreed upon earlier with the terms printed out for reference;
- follow the predetermined purchase process, with you paying cash, seller releasing the bitcoins and wait for one block to ensure transfer.
How Does Peer-to-Peer Exchange Work?
Peer-to-peer (P2P) exchanges with cash work wonderfully if both sides are intent on keeping the trade fair and follow the procedure fully. As with face-to-face, the procedure usually works like this:
- Through platforms such as LocalBitcoins or Wall of Coins, buyer and seller meet and communicate the terms of the trade.
- The seller’s BTCs are held in the site’s escrow and are released once the buyer has released the funds through bank cash payment.
- The seller, upon receiving the payment, verifies it and BTCs are then released from escrow to e-wallet of the buyer, completing the trade.
Buying BTC at Peer-to-Peer Exchanges
Buying bitcoins with cash through P2P could go two ways; either you can set up a face-to-face meeting with the seller or you can make the cash payment in a bank near you to keep your privacy. Both ways are conducted through websites such as LocalBitcoins or Wall of Coins, where you communicate directly with sellers where you can find information about them and their trading requirements.
Peer-to-Peer Exchanges Benefits
- could be quite profitable due to the competitive market orders;
- high privacy during the exchange;
- low fees compared to ATM and store BTC.
What about Exchange Rates?
In the BTC case, the exchange rates depend on market trends and what people are willing to trade BTC for. The value is thus measured through various order prices, store programs, and bank BTC prices as well and is highly subjective since it does not have fixed rate as other currencies.
The indexes like bitcoin Average and CoinDesk BPI offer benchmark rates but the actual price is a matter of agreement by individual buyers and sellers.
Buying BTC for Cash: FAQ
Is It Riskily to Buy BTC for Cash?
There are several risks that need to be addressed when buying bitcoin with cash:
- the value of the bitcoin varies from day to day and from trader to trader thus losses could happen quite easily;
- scams with bitcoins are common, as sellers might not release BTC even when confronted with a receipt from the bank;
- various partnerships between web platforms, banks and other partners could fall apart due to the many circumstances which in turn could impact the traders.
Benefits and Shortcomings
- competitive BTC pricing;
- instantaneous purchase process;
- various offers and providers to choose from.
- high fees from providers;
- risks of scams;
- volatile market.
Why Do LocalBitcoins and Bitcoin ATMs Have So High Exchange Price?
Many people value privacy and even more people value security, thus these providers charge extra for the perks of being unseen and safe. ATMs offer comfort and instantaneous purchase with a secure environment to purchase BTC, while LocalBitcoins offer protection from scams and fast purchase process that maintains the privacy of the trader.
Does It Safe to Give My ID?
Safety of your ID information depends on who requires it. Many websites require you to verify your ID while maintaining your privacy by promising that your details are known only to them and the popular platforms such as BitQuick, LibertyX and others have already established themselves as reliable.
As for P2P, it is recommended to exchange with known traders to avoid ID information theft as the risks are very high when dealing directly with peers. Always check the reputation of business and platforms you wish to deal with as to avoid unpleasant situations.
Is It Normal to Leave My BTCs on the Exchange?
When considering whether to leave BTC on the wallet or in exchange, one needs to consider trade-offs of benefits of these two approaches. Exchange offers high liquidity of BTC movement but lower security compared to an offline wallet. It is up to your strategy of how you wish to trade with BTCs and many websites are considered reliable but keep in mind that they too can be hacked.
So the answer is – Yes, it is quite normal to leave BTC on the exchange but keep in mind security of your assets when doing so.
Can You Sell Bitcoins for Cash?
Since buying bitcoin with cash is possible, so is the selling process as well! The seller receives the cash from the buyer either through face-to-face meetings or from bank transfer, depending on what was agreed upon prior to BTC exchange.
How to Avoid Frauds and Scams
There are several ways to protect yourself from scams and frauds in BTC markets:
- research the BTC prices in different platforms, exchanges and other websites to induce the average BTC price;
- review the BTC provider; check their history, rating and BTC availability;
- always define trade specifics prior to the meeting and buy/sell process;
- in face-to-face meetings, choose more public place to meet and bring another person with you to ensure safe trading;
- make sure you hold payment until BTC has been moved to website’s escrow.
Get a Safe Bitcoin Wallet
There are several wallets that could provide you with higher security against theft and hacking schemes, them being web-based e-wallets, Armory wallet software, and hardware wallets.
|Screen||Choose Right BTC Wallet||Price||Currencies Accepted|
|Ledger Nano S||€69 BUY||Bitcoin, XRP, ETH, ETC, LTC, DOGE, DASH, ZEC, STRAT|
|KeepKey||$99 BUY||Bitcoin, ETH, LTC, DOGE, DASH, NMC|
|Trezor||$99 BUY||Bitcoin, ETH, LTC, DASH, ZEC|
|Ledger Blue||€274 BUY||Bitcoin, XRP, ETH, ETC, LTC, DOGE, DASH, ZEC, STRAT|
Web-based wallets offer security guaranteed by the provider with their own encryption and security tools. Many of them offer theft payment should these wallets be breached.
Armory software creates a deterministic offline wallet that could be used in the online and offline environment.
The hardware wallets are the next big thing, as they provide security against hacking and theft due to a suitable encryption and stores of private keys in a secured offline environment.