Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are often purchased online, but that doesn’t mean you can’t purchase them with cold-hard-cash. It may involve a few more steps than usual, but thankfully there are several ways to purchase Bitcoin with cash in South Africa.
How to buy cryptocurrency with cash
- How it works: Meet a seller near you in person, and buy Bitcoin with cash in hand, or any other payment option you agree on.
- Available exchanges:
- What to consider: Both the buyer and seller can be nervous about this kind of transaction. Make sure you only meet in a public place, and try to only deal with sellers that have a good reputation on the site.
Cash transfer at banks
- How it works: Go to a bank and pay with cash over the counter for the bank to transfer into the exchange’s account.
- Available exchanges:
- What to consider: This is a good way of turning cash into Bitcoin with minimal fees. However, different coin providers might have their own requirements, such as using a specific bank.
- How it works: Deposit cash into a machine which will then deposit Bitcoin into your wallet.
- Available exchanges:
- What to consider: If there’s a Bitcoin ATM near you, then this might be a quick and convenient way of getting Bitcoin deposited to your wallet. However, it might involve significant fees.
Pay cash at a money transfer service
- How it works: Go into a Western Union or MoneyGram branch (or equivalent), and pay the cash for transfer to the specified recipient.
- Available exchanges
- What to consider: As long as there’s a branch near you, this is a very easy way to pay cash for the service of your choice. The downsides are that you lose some anonymity and you might get caught by fees.
What are the pros and cons of buying cryptocurrency with cash?
Like most things, paying with cash has both benefits and downsides. Depending on your preferred method above, you might experience the following.
- Typically not the most cost-effective option
- You will generally be limited in the amount you can buy
- Your platform options will be more limited
What are the fees relative to other payment methods?
Your fees will vary depending on your exact cash payment method. You’ll also find different standard commissions and fees depending on your method. For example, you can generally expect premium prices and relatively high commission fees for the convenience of paying through a Bitcoin ATM.
- Peer-to-peer cash in hand. Zero fees other than what’s included in the transaction cost.
- Cash transfer at banks. This might have no or low fees, while the cheap transfers might also help you find more competitive rates from Bitcoin sellers.
- Bitcoin ATM. The fees and costs will vary between ATMs, but you can probably expect them to be relatively high compared to the most affordable options.
- Money transfer service. The fees will depend on which service you use, and whether there are also currency exchange fees involved.
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