Interest in Bitcoin (BTC) is continuing to grow, but only a tiny percentage of merchants accept it (or any other cryptocurrency). Fortunately, there are more and more bitcoin debit cards (e.g. Wirex).
Bitcoin debit cards allow you to instantly convert and spend your cryptocurrency online and in-store. There are some minor exceptions, but they’re usually accepted anywhere that a standard Visa debit card is.
But what’s the best bitcoin debit card in the UK?
In this post, I’ll go through the best bitcoin debit card options available to you in the UK.
Best Bitcoin Debit Cards
A Little History
Back in January 2018, Visa terminated WaveCrest’s Visa membership. This impacted lots of popular bitcoin debit cards available at the time and meant they had to (temporarily) cease offering their products.
Below are the best options available in the UK.
#1: Wirex Bitcoin Debit Card
|Supported Countries||Full support in 32 countries, incl. UK, EU, and Singapore.|
|Supported Fiat Currencies||GBP, EUR, SGD, & More|
|Supported Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Ripple (XRP), Waves (WAVES), Wollo (WLO), Dai (DAI), Nano (NANO), & Stellar (XLM)|
|Account Management Fee||£1.00 / €1.20 / $1.50 per month|
|Card Type||Visa Debit (GBP) & Visa Prepaid (EUR & USD)|
Wirex’s crypto debit card is currently available in the UK and Europe. It’ll soon be available in the US.
It’s free to setup GBP, EUR, or USD virtual and physical cards. However, you’ll need to pay a £1.00 / €1.20 / $1.50 account management fee (per month). If you use it enough in-store, you should cover the costs of that with the 0.5% cashback you earn (in satoshis) when you use your card in-store.
And the cherry on top?
It’s one of the easiest and cheapest places to buy bitcoin in the UK with a debit card. While alternatives are charging fees of more than 4% to buy bitcoin with a debit card, Wirex provides market-rate exchange rates and charges just a 1% fee. That’s absolutely insane.
I’m a big fan of what Wirex are doing. It’s now my preferred way to buy bitcoin in the UK.
#2: Coinbase Bitcoin Debit Card
|Supported Countries||UK & EU|
|Supported Fiat Currencies||GBP, EUR, & USD|
|Supported Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), & Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ripple (XRP), Basic Attention Token (BAT), Augur (REP), 0x (ZRX), & Stellar (XLM)|
|Account Management Fee||Free|
|Card Type||Visa Debit (GBP)|
Coinbase announced their cryptocurrency debit card, dubbed ‘Coinbase Card’, on 11 April 2019. It’s only available to residents in the United Kingdom but will be rolled out elsewhere in the future.
The Coinbase card seamlessly connects with your Coinbase cryptocurrency wallets. It automatically converts your preferred cryptocurrency on-demand to cover whatever purchases you make with it.
Here’s the summary from my full Coinbase Card Review:
While the Coinbase Card makes spending your cryptocurrency quick and easy, it isn’t the cheapest way of spending your cryptocurrency with a debit card in the UK. You’ll be charged an issuance fee of £4.95, a cryptocurrency exchange fee of 2.49%, and additional transaction fees outside the UK.
I liked the Coinbase card, but it’s no competition for what’s being offered by Wirex. The transaction costs are so high that it’s not a valid alternative. I wouldn’t recommend it.
#3: MCO Bitcoin Debit Card
|Supported Fiat Currencies||GBP, EUR, AUD, HKD, JPY, & SGD|
|Supported Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Ripple (XRP), Monaco (MCO), Basic Attention Token (BAT), Binance Coin (BNB), TrueUSD (TUSD), & Enjin Coin (ENJ)|
|Account Management Fee||Unknown|
Previously known as the ‘Monaco Card’, the rebranded Crypto.com bitcoin debit card looks interesting. Unfortunately, it’s not yet available in the UK or Europe.
But that looks set to change in 2020! In a recent blog post, they said that they’d received approval for release in Europe.
Like other crypto cards, it’ll work anywhere that Visa is normally accepted (i.e. pretty much everywhere).
You’ll get better card benefits depending on how much you MCO token you’re willing to stake. If you stake 50,000 MCO, then you get:
- 5% cashback on all your spending.
- 100% rebate on Spotify and Netflix subscriptions.
- 10% cashback on Expedia and Airbnb purchases.
- Free ATM withdrawals for the first $1000 every month
- Access to interbank exchange rates for all your currency exchanges.
Sound good? Yeah.
The catch? At the current exchange rate, 50,000 MCO is $253,000. Ouch!
A free card is available, which provides 1% cashback, $200 of free ATM withdrawals, and the interbank exchange rate for the first $2000 of currency exchanges every month.
When it makes its way to the UK, I look forward to checking it out and seeing how it compares to the market leader (Wirex).
You can find out more on their official website.
#4: Cryptopay Bitcoin Debit Card
|Supported Fiat Currencies||GBP, EUR, & USD|
|Supported Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), & Ripple (XRP).|
|Card Issuance||€15.00 / $15.00 / 1,000.00 ₽|
|Account Management Fee||€1.00 / $1.00 / 65.00 ₽|
|Card Type||Visa Prepaid (EUR, USD, & RUB)|
Cryptopay bitcoin debit cards are currently only available in Russia (since October 2018). Physical or virtual cards are not currently available in the UK, Europe, or the US.
Here’s what they said when I asked them about this:
“Cards are not available yet, but we will start issuing them very soon!🚀 At the moment we are testing cards to be sure that everything is going well.”
Cryptopay weren’t able to provide an estimate on when they expect for their bitcoin debit card to be available to order. There are some further details in this blog post from late 2018.
Unlike Wirex, you’ll need to pay a card issuance fee when you order a physical card. You’ll also need to pay an account management fee to keep your account open. To make matters even worse, you’ll be charged 1% to top-up (i.e. load) currencies onto your Cryptopay card!
Even if this was available in the UK, I wouldn’t be recommending it.
But if you want to know more, check out their official website.
#5: Tenx Bitcoin Debit Card
|Supported Countries||Asia Pacific Region|
|Supported Fiat Currencies||USD|
|Supported Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin (BTC) & Ethereum (ETH)|
|Card Issuance||$15 (Physical) & $1.50 (Virtual)|
|Account Management Fee||$10 Annual Fee (waived if you spend >$1000 per year)|
The TenX bitcoin debit card is currently only available to residents in the Asia Pacific region. However, those cards can be used around the world anywhere that Visa is usually accepted.
Even when it is available, I’m not sure it’ll be worth checking out.
- You have to pay a physical card issuance fee of $15.
- There’s an annual account fee ($10) unless you spend more than $1000 with the card in a year (source).
- ATM withdrawal fees are $3.25.
It also looks like there are hidden fees inside the exchange rate provided in their apps (which you’d use to change between BTC and GBP).
Find out more on their official website.
#6: BitPay Bitcoin Debit Card
|Supported Fiat Currencies||USD|
|Supported Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin (BTC)|
|Account Management Fee||$5 per month (if you don't use the card once every 90 days)|
|Card Type||Visa Prepaid (USD)|
The BitPay bitcoin debit card is currently only available to US residents, across all 50 states.
Although you’ll need to pay a card issuance fee of $9.95, you won’t be charged an account management fee as long as you use the card at least once every 90 days. If you load dollars onto your BitPay debit card using your BitPay bitcoin wallet, then you won’t pay any additional fees.
When you’re in the United States, it’ll be accepted anywhere that a Prepaid Visa is usually accepted. You won’t pay anything to use your BitPay debit card while in the United States, but you’ll pay a 3% foreign transaction fee when using it abroad.
If you’re a United States resident, this seems like a great option from a reputable and established company.
You can find out more about this on their official website.
Unavailable Bitcoin Debit Cards
The following bitcoin debit cards are not currently available:
- CoinsBank bitcoin debit card
- SpectroCoin bitcoin debit card
- TokenCard bitcoin debit card
- XAPO bitcoin debit card
Summary: Best Bitcoin Debit Card?
Right now, there isn’t much choice.
If you’re from the UK or Europe, then the best bitcoin debit card is Wirex.
With Wirex, you can easily convert and spend your cryptocurrency balance anywhere that Visa is accepted (which is pretty much everywhere). You’ll also get 0.5% cashback (in satoshis) when you use your Wirex card in-store.
Wirex is also my preferred place to buy bitcoin (and other supported cryptocurrencies) in the UK.
You can find out everything about the Wirex card in my full Wirex review.
What Do You Think?
What’s your favourite bitcoin debit card?
Let us know in the comment section below!