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Guide to crypto banks in Ireland

Discover how crypto banks work and which ones are available in Ireland.

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.

There’s no doubt about it – banking and cryptocurrencies are edging closer into the mainstream on a global level. But what about closer to home? In this guide, we will take you through crypto banks in Ireland, how they work, whether they are secure and the benefits they offer.

Compare crypto banks in Ireland

1 - 11 of 11
Name Product Mobile view crypto Yield rate Deposit fee Supported cryptocurrencies
  • Yield rate

    Up to 8%
  • Deposit fee

    $0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    12

Up to 8%
$0

12

Use the Binance Visa debit card to convert and spend your crypto. Earn up to 8% BNB cashback on eligible purchases, depending on the amount of BNB holdings in your Binance wallet.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 12%
  • Deposit fee

    S$0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    28

Up to 12%
S$0

28

Get a Welcome Bonus of $15 USD in WXT when you sign up with Wirex through Finder.

Enjoy revolutionary digital payment features on-the-go, plus exclusive merchant deals and higher rewards when you spend on your Wirex card.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 12%
  • Deposit fee

    S$0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    28

Up to 12%
S$0

28

Get a Welcome Bonus of $15 USD in WXT when you sign up with Wirex through Finder.

Benefit from an array of digital payment features, including a free prepaid Wirex card and unlimited fee-free transfers at interbank rates - with zero monthly subscription fee.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 12%
  • Deposit fee

    S$0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    28

Up to 12%
S$0

28

Get a Welcome Bonus of $15 USD in WXT when you sign up with Wirex through Finder.

Access supercharged rewards and curated merchant offers in addition to standard Wirex digital payment features and travel card.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 8%
  • Deposit fee

    €0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    16

Up to 8%
€0

16

Choose a metal Visa card from one of five tiers from Crypto.com and earn up to 8% back in crypto. Plus get extra rewards by staking some of your digital assets.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 15.6%
  • Deposit fee

    2%

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    8

Up to 15.6%
2%

8

With Crypterium’s Visa card, move crypto from your wallet to your card for purchases and ATM withdrawals.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 9.25%
  • Deposit fee

    $0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    13

Up to 9.25%
$0

13

Earn up to 1.5% back in crypto on every purchase with the BlockFi Rewards Visa credit card.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 12%
  • Deposit fee

    $0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    7

Up to 12%
$0

7

Link your crypto wallet up to Yield App in order to transfer your digital assets over and start earning up to 12% APY
  • Yield rate

    Up to 7.5%
  • Deposit fee

    $0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    2

Up to 7.5%
$0

2

Ledn is a crypto lending platform offering Bitcoin and USD Coin savings accounts with an interest of up to 7.5% APY and BTC-backed loans.
  • Yield rate

    Up to 5.75%
  • Deposit fee

    $0

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    14

Up to 5.75%
$0

14

Use the Coinbase Visa debit card to make spending your crypto assets even easier with free ATM withdrawals up to €200 each month.
  • Yield rate

    N/A
  • Deposit fee

    0 €

  • Supported cryptocurrencies

    12

N/A
0 €

12

Virtually exchange your crypto assets for euros then load them onto the SpectroCoin card for easy spending wherever Visa is accepted.
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Compare up to 4 providers

What is a crypto bank?

Crypto banks represent digital exchanges or fintech companies that allow you to buy, sell, store and manage your cryptocurrency from a digital wallet. Crypto banking services are designed to be like traditional or online banks, sometimes removing the need for you to ever personally interact with cryptocurrency.

What you can do with your cryptocurrencies depends on the platform. Many offer the ability to make payments through crypto debit cards and earn higher returns than you’ll find at your local bank. Some allow your crypto to be used as collateral for loans. And all-in-one crypto platforms like BlockFi allow you to buy, sell and earn crypto through products like crypto-backed loans, trading accounts, savings accounts and credit cards.

How to get started with crypto banking (2 ways)

You can get involved in crypto banking in 2 common, beginner-friendly ways:

  1. Earn products. These let you own cryptocurrency and use a crypto bank service to lend it out to other users, which can mean you earn a high return.
  2. Deposit products. Depositing fiat currency such as EUR or GBP into a crypto bank and allowing it to convert your fiat into crypto in order to lend out to others, earning you a yield on your total balance.

Carefully read the fine print of the crypto exchange you’re interested in to make sure it offers the services you’re looking for. You may be required to lock your cryptocurrency in for a specified period of time before you can begin using it, for instance, or even wait a period of time before you can withdraw it.

How is crypto regulated in Ireland?

There are no regulations in place in Ireland for cryptocurrencies. There are no immediate plans to regulate crypto at the time of writing (22 June 2022) nor in the future. While no crypto regulation exists, there’s also no ban on buying or investing in cryptocurrencies.

That said, the Central Bank of Ireland, which regulates Ireland’s financial services, has, in the past, issued warnings to consumers highlighting the risks involved in cryptocurrencies including the lack of regulation, price volatility and the possibility of misleading information.

At least for now, crypto assets are set apart from fiat currency such as euros because crypto assets and cryptocurrencies are not supported as legal tender in Ireland. This makes it even more important for you to do your research before diving into buying or investing in cryptocurrencies.

How do crypto banks work?

Crypto banks offer a way for customers to hold their digital assets and complete crypto banking processes such as depositing, saving, transferring, and more. So instead of simply storing cryptocurrencies in hot or cold wallets, you can use crypto more widely in everyday transactions.

To allow you to hold crypto in a bank account, crypto banks supplement their banking infrastructure with blockchain technology so cryptocurrencies can be used to facilitate transactions of all kinds, exchanged for goods or services and easily flow back into the market.

Benefits of crypto banks

If you own enough cryptocurrency to park it in an account, you may be able to take advantage of high returns and rewards:

  • Sky-high yields. Companies such as Crypto.com advertise rates as high as 14.5%. Platforms come with different requirements on the highest returns, often requiring you to invest in the platform’s native cryptocurrency to max out your yield.
  • Easy access to your assets. Crypto banks are partnering with household names like Visa and Mastercard, making it easier for you to spend – and earn rewards on – your crypto.
  • Returns in stablecoins. Many crypto banks offer products that can help you mitigate crypto volatility by investing in stablecoins – coins pegged to a “stable” fiat currency like USD. Earning a return on stablecoins may shield you from market volatility, as these types of cryptocurrencies are designed to maintain a value equal to the US dollar.
  • Assess low-rate financing. By offering up your crypto as collateral, you can access loans at lower rates than a traditional bank’s, often without a credit check or ID – and without having to sell your crypto.
  • Minimal financial checks and reports. For now, crypto banks offer an opportunity for the marginally banked and unbanked to access financing based only on the value of their crypto holdings and not their banking and financial history.

Risks of crypto banks

Cryptocurrency is a speculative investment, and today’s crypto banks lack protections and safeguards you may be used to:

  • Offers little to no reserves. Crypto banks can offer high APYs (annual percentage yield) because there’s no need to keep the reserves traditional banks typically need in order to cover the cost of loan defaults. This enables crypto banks to generate a higher return on investment – but also results in less protection for you if several high-stake loans fail.
  • No government protection. Unlike traditional banking, there is zero protection from the Central Bank of Ireland. If a crypto bank goes bust or gets hacked, your cryptocurrency holding may be lost with no hope of getting it back.
  • You might need to give up control. A draw of cryptocurrency is that it’s controlled by whoever holds the private keys to it. Yet some crypto banks and wallets are custodial accounts that require you to give up and trust them with your keys.
  • Rates fluctuate with the market. While rates for crypto savings accounts can be high, the value of your earnings can fluctuate with the market. Sharp market movements can leave you unable to react to those changing market conditions.
  • Confusion in Tax reporting. Crypto users are responsible for tracking all crypto transactions, including trades, exchanges, donations and payments for goods and services with cryptocurrency. And any gains will also need to be recorded on their tax returns. While there is no specific tax rule for crypto and crypto assests, the Revenue has information on its website about the taxation of crypto asset transactions in Ireland.

How crypto banks protect your money

Crypto banks understand the risks associated with their services, and top companies have developed protections to mitigate those risks for consumers.

Cold storage

Crypto banks often allow you to choose between hot or cold storage of your assets. Hot storage means that your crypto is stored online, where it is easy for you and the platform to access. Harder to access is cold storage, where your crypto is stored offline, offering deeper protection against hacking and breaches.

Third-party insurance

Some crypto banks provide safeguards through pooled insurance and partnerships with third parties. For example, Nexo partners with both BitGo and Ledger on a US$375 million insurance policy through Lloyd’s of London and Arch and Mars that covers a custodian’s assets in the event of a security breach or employee theft.

Bug bounties

Binance and other platforms support “bug bounty” programs, which invite the help of ethical hackers and cybersecurity experts to intentionally breach security protections and expose vulnerabilities – helping to strengthen protocols and stay a step ahead of bad guys trying to gain access to your virtual assets.

Which crypto banks are available in Ireland?

Here’s a list of crypto banks available in Ireland:

  • Bitwala. Bitwala is a German-based blockchain banking service that allows users to manage everyday banking and trade cryptocurrencies in a single account.
  • Revolut. Digital bank Revolut allows you to buy, hold and trade cryptocurrencies directly in the app. You can purchase 30 cryptocurrencies through the app, with transactions starting at € 1.
  • Finoa. A German blockchain startup and regulated custodian for Digitial Assets, Finoa enables institutional investors in Ireland to hold and manage their crypto assets securely through its unique ‘warm storage’ technology.
  • Wirex. Digital banking platform Wirex allows you to convert and spend cryptocurrencies anywhere that Mastercard is accepted, with the ability to earn crypto-rewards as you spend.
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Disclaimer: 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.

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