As one of the world’s largest cryptocurrencies by market cap, XRP (XRP) is one of the most traded currencies on global crypto exchanges. The native asset of the open-source XRP Ledger, XRP is designed to facilitate fast and affordable transactions between the world’s different fiat currencies.
XRP is most famously used by cross-border payments provider Ripple, but can be bought and sold by everyday users on a wide range of exchanges. If you want to know how to buy XRP with fiat or cryptocurrency, read on for step-by-step instructions.
On 22/12/2020 the Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC) filed a lawsuit against Ripple and two of its executives.
According to the SEC press release “The complaint alleges that Ripple raised funds, beginning in 2013, through the sale of digital assets known as XRP in an unregistered securities offering to investors in the U.S. and worldwide.”
Ripple filed a 93-page response to the lawsuit on 01/29/2021, stating that “XRP performs a number of functions that are distinct from the functions of “securities” as the law has understood that term for decades. For example, XRP functions as a medium of exchange — a virtual currency used today in international and domestic transactions — moving value between jurisdictions and facilitating transactions.”
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XRP is available on an extensive range of cryptocurrency exchanges, including the following:
XRP vs Ripple: What’s the difference?
Unsure about the difference between Ripple and XRP?
Ripple is the name of a US technology company that aims to make it easier and cheaper to send money overseas. Meanwhile, XRP is the native digital asset of the XRP Ledger and is used to facilitate transactions between different fiat currencies.
There are two options to choose from when buying XRP:
Buying XRP with fiat currency, such as GBP
Buying XRP with another cryptocurrency, for example BTC
If you’re a cryptocurrency novice, you’ll most likely find that buying XRP with fiat currency is the easiest and most convenient option. However, you can find simple, step-by-step instructions below on how to buy XRP with either fiat or digital currency.
Buying XRP with fiat currency
If you want to buy XRP, here’s an example of how to do it:
Step 1. Register for an account with an exchange that allows you to buy XRP
XRP is listed on a wide range of exchanges, so search for an exchange that offers your desired XRP pairings. You can then register for an account by supplying your email address and setting up a password.
At this stage of the process, some exchanges will allow you to start trading straight away. However, other exchanges will need further information to satisfy Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements, in which case you’ll have to provide your name, contact information and proof of ID.
Before depositing any funds, you should also enable two-factor authentication on your account for increased security.
Step 2. Deposit funds into your account
Many cryptocurrency exchanges don’t allow you to exchange GBP or other fiat currency for XRP. If this is the case on the platform you choose, you’ll need to first use your GBP to buy a crypto that’s listed in a currency pairing with XRP, such as Ether (ETH) or Bitcoin (BTC), and then exchange it for XRP.
Step 3. Buy XRP
Click through to the markets or exchange section on your trading platform and search for the currency pairing you want, such as BTC/XRP.
Click on the “Buy XRP” link and enter the desired purchase amount in either XRP or GBP. Before finalising the order, make sure you review the full details of the transaction and any fees that apply.
It’s also possible to buy XRP with another digital currency, for example Bitcoin (BTC) or Ethereum (ETH). Read on for an example of how to do this.
Step 1. Register for an account with a crypto exchange
You can trade XRP on an extensive range of cryptocurrency exchanges, so compare the features of a number of platforms before choosing one that’s right for your needs.
Binance is one of the world’s largest crypto exchanges and it lists XRP in multiple trading pairs. You can sign up for a Binance account by providing your email address and creating a password. Make sure you also enable two-factor authentication on your account before depositing any funds.
Warning: Binance offers cryptocurrency derivatives, which the regulator banned from sale to UK consumers in January 2021.
Step 2. Deposit funds into your account
You’ll now need to ensure that the cryptocurrency you’ll use to buy XRP is in your exchange wallet. If it’s already there, skip ahead to step 3.
To transfer funds into your account, you’ll need to make sure you’re depositing them to the right address. On Binance, this means clicking “Funds” and selecting “Deposits”, and then searching for the coin or token you want to deposit.
Once the funds have arrived in your account you can navigate to the exchange page and buy XRP.
On Binance, you’ll need to click the “Exchange” tab and select either the “Basic” or “Advanced” trading view, then search for the pair you want to trade, such as “XRP/BTC”. Select a Limit, Market or Stop-Limit Order before entering the amount of XRP you want to buy.
Make sure you take a moment to review the transaction details before you click “Buy XRP”.
How to sell XRP
If you want to sell XRP, the process for doing so is quite similar to the buying process outlined in Step 3. Depending on the exchange you choose, it’s possible to exchange XRP for a decent range of fiat and cryptocurrencies, so do your research to find the right platform for you.
However, keep in mind that XRP isn’t listed in trading pairs with every possible currency, so it may not be possible to make a direct exchange for the coin you want.
Which wallets can I use to hold XRP?
While you can store your XRP on an exchange if you wish, this is generally not recommended due to the security risks associated with centralised trading platforms. Instead, it’s a good idea to transfer your tokens to a secure, private wallet.
Ripple doesn’t offer an official wallet for XRP, but there are several third-party providers that offer wallet support for this popular crypto. Examples you may want to consider include the Ledger Nano S hardware wallet, or a mobile/web wallet like Uphold or Cryptonator.
Ripple is a San Francisco-based tech company that also has offices in New York, London, Sydney, India, Singapore and Luxembourg. Founded in 2012 and currently led by CEO Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple is focused on making it quicker, easier and cheaper to send cross-border payments.
Ripple aims to create a global settlement network that allows for more efficient transactions between financial institutions around the world. Its network, RippleNet, is designed to connect banks, payment providers, digital asset exchanges and corporate entities around the world, linking independent payment infrastructures to allow for fast and affordable international transfers.
And this is where XRP comes in. XRP is the native digital asset of the XRP Ledger and acts as a bridge currency, facilitating fast transfers between different fiat currencies. Transactions using XRP can be processed within four seconds, as opposed to the lengthy waiting times that currently plague international bank transfers.
XRP is also designed to be scalable, making it capable of processing 1,500 transactions per second. This, combined with low transaction fees (currently set at a minimum of 0.00001 XRP per transaction), has seen Ripple strike up partnerships with more than 100 financial institutions.
Ripple offers three main solutions for banks and other corporate entities:
xRapid uses XRP to provide on-demand liquidity to payment providers, thereby minimising liquidity costs.
xCurrent is a messaging system that allows banks to instantly settle cross-border payments with end-to-end tracking.
xVia is a standard payments interface for corporate entities, payment providers and banks that want to send transactions across various networks.
Key things to consider if you’re thinking about buying XRP
Cryptocurrencies are complicated and volatile assets, so it’s essential that you do your own research before purchasing any digital coin or token. There are myriad factors that can potentially impact the price movements of any given crypto, so if you’re thinking of buying any XRP, make sure you consider the following:
Supply. According to CoinMarketCap, at time of writing (July 2018) the circulating supply of XRP was 39,262,444,717 XRP, with maximum supply capped at 100 billion.
XRP distribution. While the maximum supply of 100 billion XRP has already been created, less than 40 billion of those are in circulation, with a large portion held by Ripple Labs. However, in May 2017, Ripple pledged to lock up 55 billion XRP in 55 smart contracts, essentially putting those funds in escrow. Each month, a contract releases 1 billion XRP into the market. This move was designed to combat fears that Ripple could drive down the price of XRP by instantly releasing all its holdings onto the market.
Competition. Stellar is another project focused on transforming cross-border payments, and it’s often listed as Ripple’s major competitor. Check out how the two networks compare in our Ripple vs Stellar guide.
Availability. You can buy and sell XRP on a wide range of cryptocurrency exchanges. Not only does this provide increased credibility to the cryptocurrency, but the fact that it’s relatively easy to access may also drive up demand.
20 XRP reservation fee. To fund an XRP wallet address, you’ll need to send a reserve requirement of 20 XRP.
Adoption of Ripple technology. A number of big players in the global financial industry have either introduced or are in the process of testing Ripple’s systems with their own operations. For example, Western Union has tested Ripple’s xRapid, which is designed to minimise liquidity costs for payment providers, while China’s LianLian International has signed up to Ripple’s xCurrent system and Saudi Arabia’s central bank has launched a Ripple pilot. Other big names that have partnered with Ripple include MoneyGram, Mercury FX, IDT, Cuallix, Santander, UniCredit, UBS and Standard Chartered.
Other factors that affect the price. Speculative trading, regulatory changes and the potential widespread adoption of Ripple technology can all impact the price of XRP.
Consider all these factors and any other potential risks before deciding whether you should buy XRP.
Does Ripple recommend any XRP wallets?
No, Ripple does not endorse or recommend any XRP wallets.
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.
Disclosure: At the time of writing the author holds ADA, ICX, IOTA and XLM.
Tim Falk is a freelance writer for Finder, writing across a diverse range of topics. Over the course of his 15-year writing career, Tim has reported on everything from travel and personal finance to pets and TV soap operas. When he’s not staring at his computer, you can usually find him exploring the great outdoors.
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