Coinbase cryptocurrency exchange | June 2018 review

Coinbase is recognized as one of the world’s premier cryptocurrency exchanges and wallet platforms, allowing Canadians to buy bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin.

Very few cryptocurrency exchanges carry a name more recognizable than Coinbase. The San Francisco-based company has 7.4 million users and counting and is available in 32 countries worldwide.

Naturally, Coinbase has several direct advantages for attracting cryptocurrency traders. In just five short years, it has achieved its goal of becoming an important cornerstone of the blockchain market.

Product Name Coinbase Digital Currency Exchange
Fiat Currencies AUD, USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, CNY & 50+ more
Cryptocurrencies BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC
Deposit Methods Credit card, Debit card
Trading Fee Fees vary
Deposit Fees Credit/debit card: 3.99%
SEPA: €0. U.S Bank transfer: 1.49% (US$0.15 min.)
Coinbase USD wallet: 1.49%
ACH Transfer USD: $0
Wire transfer USD: $10
Withdrawal Fees SEPA: €0.15
U.S Bank transfer: 1.49% (US$0.15 min.)
Coinbase USD wallet: 1.49%
Wire transfer USD: $25

Pros

  • High liquidity
  • Top crypto assets: BTC, ETH, LTC, BCH
  • Instant buy feature available
  • Easy to use
  • Insured bitcoin deposits available

Cons

  • Limited payment methods
  • Account monitoring
  • Mixed feedback on customer service
Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of cryptocurrency or any specific provider, service or offering. It is not a recommendation to trade. Cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex and involve significant risks – they are highly volatile and sensitive to secondary activity. Performance is unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before relying on this information. You should also verify the nature of any product or service (including its legal status and relevant regulatory requirements) and consult the relevant Regulators' websites before making any decision. Finder, or the author, may have holdings in the cryptocurrencies discussed.

What is Coinbase?

Founded in 2012, Coinbase is a virtual exchange that allows global users to buy and sell some of the world’s most popular cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin. Importantly, it currently provides buyer-side services only in Canada, as well as a limited range of payment options compared to other countries.

Coinbase also provides wallet services and merchant services. It’s pretty much a one-stop shop for all cryptocurrency market players.

Coinbase Coinbase
$10 of free bitcoin on Coinbase Get US$10 in free bitcoin when you buy US$100 or more of BTC, ETH, BCH or LTC.

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What cryptocurrencies can I buy?

  • Bitcoin
  • Litecoin
  • Ethereum
  • Bitcoin Cash

Available countries

Coinbase is available in 32 countries, including Canada.

There are variations in the available services, payment methods and fees that apply in each country.

Accepted payment methods

Canadian customers have access to a limited number of payment methods when compared to other countries. These include:

  • Credit card (Visa and Mastercard)
  • Debit card

How much will it cost me to use Coinbase?

Although Coinbase does not charge a fee to use its wallet service, transferring cryptocurrency to an address outside the platform may result in a network fee. Network fees are set by the blockchain community.

For Canadian customers, Coinbase charges a rate of 3.99% for credit/debit card buys.

How quickly will my funds be available?

Coinbase offers its “instant buy” feature in Canada, meaning credit/debit card purchases will be available instantly.

Are there any transfer limits?

Coinbase implements weekly buy and sell limits on all accounts. The company says it calculates your limits based on your account information. This includes verification and successful purchases made on the account.

If you want to increase your weekly limits, you need to verify your account by uploading a photo ID.

Is Coinbase secure?

Not only is Coinbase widely recognized as the world’s largest bitcoin exchange, it’s also considered one of the safest. It’s backed by trusted traders and uses the latest technology to secure its platform.

The Coinbase Wallet is considered very secure, but this comes at a cost – the company controls your bitcoin. Larger amounts of bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash or Litecoin can be stored on the Coinbase Vault, which is protected by multiple approvers.

It should be stated at the outset that Coinbase collects a lot of information about its customers, including photo ID for those who want to up their weekly limits. A piece of photo ID is also required if you are purchasing with a credit card.

Customer support

Coinbase has an active support team, with the names of key support staff readily available on their site. However, the company’s customer support ratings have been mixed as of late, which reflects its growing user base. After all, bad ratings become more common on a platform with more than 7 million users.

What that said, Coinbase operates a real-time chat feature, where it says it resolves “thousands of customer issues” every day. You can also submit a request or contact the team members in the link above.

Pros & cons

Pros

  • One of the world’s most popular cryptocurrency exchanges, which means high liquidity
  • Access to a good selection of top cryptocurrency assets, including bitcoin and Ethereum
  • Instant buy feature available
  • Easy to use for most beginners
  • Insured bitcoin deposits are available

Cons

  • Sell feature not available in Canada
  • Payment limited to credit/debit card
  • Accounts are monitored
  • Customer service has received mixed results

Next steps

If you’re looking for a bitcoin exchange that offers many features, Coinbase is a viable option. Depending on your account level, you may be able to enjoy very high limits that enable you to buy cryptocurrency at your leisure. However, as stated earlier, you need to conduct research into the platform before making a decision to buy.

To get started, visit Coinbase to create an account. By signing up, you’ll have access to the Dashboard feature as well as the FAQ section. You can then proceed to add your payment method and get started with buying cryptocurrency.

Coinbase exchange website

Frequently asked questions

Image source: Coinbase

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