What are the best ways to buy bitcoin in the UK?
There are loads of options available, but many aren’t competitively priced.
In this quick list, I’ll show you where you can buy bitcoin in the UK without getting completely and unnecessarily ripped off.
Here’s a peek at the best options in the UK:
5 Best Ways to Buy Bitcoin in the UK
Wirex allows you to buy bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies) with debit cards, credit cards, and UK bank transfers at excellent rates. Their rates are almost unbelievable – between 0.3% and 0.5% above the actual exchange rate.
This makes Wirex the easiest and absolute cheapest way to buy bitcoin with a debit or credit card in the UK.
Let’s put this into perspective. Coinbase (the cheapest alternative) charge about 4% above the actual GBP to BTC exchange rate when buying bitcoin with a debit card. On a £1000 purchase, you’d get more bitcoin (equivalent to £35) if you used Wirex instead of Coinbase.
2. Coinbase Pro
Since the introduction of GBP deposits via Faster Payments, Coinbase Pro has been the cheapest way to buy bitcoin in the UK with a UK bank transfer.
Coinbase is the first major bitcoin exchange which has been granted an e-money license. That’s a big deal, as no other (major) cryptocurrency exchange offers GBP deposits via Faster Payments in the UK. This means that you should be able to use a simple UK bank transfer to deposit GBP into Coinbase.
The bottom line?
- You can now send GBP to Coinbase and it’ll be credited in less than 2 hours.
- You’ll be able to buy bitcoin at the best possible rate and without incurring any fees.
But there’s a catch. Coinbase has started putting GBP deposits to Coinbase ‘on hold’ for 5 days.
So even though it’s the cheapest way to buy bitcoin in the UK, it’s also one of the slowest.
Use this method if you want to get the possible price (i.e., eliminate fees) – regardless of the extra steps required.
The process goes something like this:
- Download Revolut (a mobile banking app) and create an account.
- Create a Bitstamp account.
- Activate your EUR account in Revolut (full instructions below).
- Deposit GBP (via UK bank transfer or debit card) to your GPB Revolut account.
- Exchange GBP for EUR in Revolut (at the real exchange rate, instantly).
- Transfer EUR from Revolut account to Bitstamp.
- Buy bitcoin on the BTC/EUR market at the best possible rate.
It looks more complicated than it actually is. Check out my full Revolut guide for more details.
4. Solidi & Bittylicious
Both operate in much the same way:
- You plug in how much you’d like to buy and then you’ll be matched with the cheapest registered broker (who can fulfil that order).
- Once you’ve sent the money to the broker’s bank account, the funds are released from an escrow (held by Solidi/Bittylicious) to your wallet.
Using either option is fast, easy, and painless.
I use both options interchangeably depending on who is cheapest. Rates usually float somewhere around 1.5 – 2% above the actual BTC-to-GBP exchange rate (which is competitive).
Localbitcoins is a peer-to-peer (P2P) trading site which allows people to exchange local currencies for bitcoin. It allows buyers/sellers to post adverts which set the exchange rate and the desired payment method. Other sellers/buyers can browse and reply to these adverts.
There are many different payment methods available. Some examples:
- Bank transfer (Faster Payments)
- In-person (cash)
- Western Union
- Altcoins (e.g., DASH, XRP, XMR)
- Gift cards
While lots of bitcoin sellers will ask for ID verification (to comply with rules/regulations), it is possible to trade anonymously with others – but for a premium.
Localbitcoins was founded in 2012 and still remains popular in the UK and around the world.
Other Buying Options
Looking for even more ways to buy bitcoin in the UK?
Check out these buying options.
Because Coinfloor’s minimum deposit amount is £5000 (£5 fee), it’s not suitable for smaller buyers (it’s aimed at traders or large investors).
BeyondCC offers the most competitive bitcoin rates if you want to buy bitcoin in the UK with a GBP bank transfer.
They’re not included in the ranked list above because they’re a new company (established 2018).
Interested? Read my review for more details.
What do you think?
What do YOU think is the best way to buy bitcoin in the UK?
Is there somewhere cheaper, faster, or easier which I should check out?
Let me know in the comments section below!
I’m not a financial advisor and nothing I write on this website should be construed as financial advice.
For more details, check out my full disclaimer.
If you search for “Buy Bitcoin in the UK”, you’ll find some strange recommendations sprinkled around.
I was interested in what popped up the most, so I counted up all the services mentioned at least twice in the top 10 search results.
In aggregate, these suggestions don’t look too bad.
I’ll be changing and extending this list in the future.
If you do have a suggestion, let me know in the comments section below!