How to Buy Cryptocurrency in 2024

With costs knocking about, we made a full beginner’s guide on how to buy crypto.

Updated: May 24, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

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I find that often times the most ironic and entertaining outcome is the most likely. And the most entertaining outcome would be Dogecoin becoming the global new earth currency.

Elon Musk (Source)

While we can’t support Elon’s above quote, for sure one of the most rapidly expanding asset types is cryptocurrency. For this reason, we've compiled this guide to teach you the ropes of investing in cryptocurrencies in the UK, covering everything from where to get started to how to protect your money.

Finding a trustworthy broker or exchange is the first step before we dig into the specifics of how to purchase cryptocurrencies in the UK. The features, fees, and costs of many of the most well-known bitcoin brokers are compared here. The investment amount, platform, and specific cryptocurrency you choose will affect the fees.

No problem, this guide tells you how to buy cryptocurrency in 2024 from the point of view of somebody new to the space who needs a crypto 101 update, too.

In a Rush? 🚀 See how to buy cryptocurrency.

How to Buy Cryptocurrency in 2024 (UK)… 4 Easy Steps

You don't have the time to study new subjects, do you?

Sure, no sweat. Here we detail the way to get cryptocurrency in the UK in 2024. Just follow the simple instructions provided below:

  • First, you must sign up. Going to eToro's website and clicking the “Join Now” button will get you started with the platform. Enter your details to generate a username and password. Your capital is at risk.
  • The second step is to double-check. In order to make a bitcoin purchase on eToro, account verification through identity and a matching billing address is required. Looks good?
  • Put down some money. Start off trading with a minimum of $50 in your preferred payment method.
  • Time to buy. Simply enter the crypto you want, e.g. “BTC” or “ETH” in the search bar and click “Trade” to buy crypto.
eToro logo

Don’t invest unless you’re prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take 2 mins to learn more.

That’s it 🏝️. On the other hand, read on for a more in-depth explanation suitable for novices. Go on…we know you want to learn more. Boffin. 

Step 1: How to Buy Cryptocurrency: Risk- and Goal-Setting: Write a Mission Statement! 

Without a mission statement, you may get to the top of the ladder and then realize it was leaning against the wrong building!

Dave Ramsey  (Source)

That quote above was especially used, seeing as we’re living in financially pressured times. There’s been a huge generational shift in prosperity, with energy costing more and high-nutrition foods being pricier… When we deal with the digital topsy-turvy world of crypto, we have to remember the humble practicalities of life. 

You’ve seen mission statements on a regular basis.

They’re in corporate brochures and on walls in the lobby. An organization's mission statement is a powerful tool for setting long-term goals and defining its unique character.

But did you realise that small businesses may benefit from them, too? You don’t need to feel excluded from having a mission statement. A personal mission statement like this can be just what you need to zero in on your true priorities and discover the drive to see them through to fruition.

What Exactly is a Mission Statement?

Your personal mission statement should explain your identity and goals in the workplace and beyond. It describes your plans for achieving that goal and the reasons why they are so important to you.

Author and professional counsellor Dan Miller recommends including the following in your mission statement:

  1. To begin with, your strengths and talents (what you like to do)
  2. The characteristics of your character (how you operate)
  3. What you hold dear, what you hope for, and what drives you (why you want to excel)

Why Write a Mission Statement?

Making a personal mission statement is beneficial whether you're a truck driver, a stay-at-home mom, a retail manager, a student, or a corporate leader. You need one, and so do we.

This is crucial because it directs your attention to the things you need to do in order to achieve your ultimate objectives. If you have a certain destination in mind, this will help you get there. Writing a mission statement has a low barrier to entry and a high return on investment because, in a word, it works!

Because having a clear goal to strive for helps you avoid being sidetracked. For instance, you shouldn't go through with a plan of action if it conflicts with your personal goal statement. Even if you think something is neat, it doesn't imply you have to start doing it.

This is especially important considering how up-and-down the crypto world. It rarely works to simply gamble your money. Consider your bigger goals:

  • Your values as a person, member of your family, and part of a community 
  • Who you are responsible for, what you want to be remembered for 
  • What savings, skills, and work ethic you are developing alongside financial investments

Financial advisor, Dave Ramsey, suggests using your mission statement as a boundary marker for your thinking. Is it realistic to pursue a profession inside an office if the outdoors is where your heart really belongs? Don't put unrealistic expectations on yourself.

When people don't have well-defined objectives, they're less likely to succeed. They become sidetracked by irrelevant ideas and forget why they were created. So, they aren't even bothering to follow their own stated goals. A successful individual, however, will have a clearly articulated goal for their future.

Right now is a great moment to sit down and compose your own personal mission statement if you haven't previously done so.

Step 2: Choose Your Crypto Exchange

Fear is the enemy of hope.

Dave Ramsey  (Source)

In comparison to buying regular stocks and shares using brokers, buying Ether involves more steps. Neither is crypto traded on major traditional financial exchanges like the LSE or NYSE, and many brokers won't even accept crypto investments.

To purchase ETH, you must use a cryptocurrency exchange or a broker with access to the cryptocurrency market. Aside from that, though, it operates like any other online brokerage platform: Investors may convert their fiat cash into cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Dogecoin by using a cryptocurrency exchange.

If you haven't already, we suggest looking over our list of the best cryptocurrency exchanges to help you make your decision. An exchange's principal trading platform may have reduced operating expenses, but some also offer a beginner-friendly interface.

The question of if the exchange you choose offers bitcoin wallets is a crucial consideration. A firewall is an optional addition that may help prevent hacking, but it comes at a cost. It's time to take a look at the best options for purchasing Ethereum.

★ Regulations of crypto

eToro: Review — Top-Rated Broker That Lets You Buy Cryptocurrency

In case you were wondering, eToro offers three distinct ways to trade cryptocurrency.

Choose to:

1. Mimic the trades of successful crypto traders.

2. Exchange cryptocurrencies to hold.

3. Make advantage of Contracts for Difference.

This high-tech online marketplace was built with both serious traders and institutional investors in mind. There is a browser wallet for exchanging cryptocurrency.

With regard to online brokers, eToro (review) is one of the safest and most popular options when it comes to purchasing cryptocurrency.

eToro logo

Don’t invest unless you’re prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take 2 mins to learn more.

It’s costly but dependable. A global user base of over 13 million attests to the platform's popularity in the UK. In order to buy cryptocurrency for the first time, eToro is a good option due to its ease of use.

Actually, opening an account, funding it, and making your first investment doesn't take that long. The fact that eToro supports so many different kinds of investments speaks to the site's widespread popularity. It works with several different types of cryptocurrency, including Bitcoin (among 16 others). You may trade them in for several fiat currencies.

Investments may be made in the stock of companies traded on any of 17 different stock exchanges across the world. ETFs of several types may also be traded on eToro. If you're looking for a way to invest for the long haul, an eToro CopyPortfolio could be worth a look.

You may put your money to work for you in these specially managed portfolios. Investors have several other markets to choose from outside the bitcoin market.

You need to sign up for an eToro account and put funds into it before you can start trading your chosen cryptocurrency or buying it to hold. Your next steps are detailed here.

  • Open the eToro online trading platform.
  • Invest in cryptocurrency by choosing your selected coin from the “Trade Markets” menu. This will provide you with a comprehensive list of every crypto asset available.
  • Look for the ticker symbol you want, e.g. BTC or ETH, and click on it. Once you click here, you'll be sent directly the prerequisite exchange.
  • Press the “Trade” button to begin trading.
  • Simply enter the amount you want to invest, tweak the parameters to your choice, and then hit “Open Trade” to complete the transaction.

Coinbase: Review — A Popular Crypto Exchange That Lets You Buy Cryptocurrency

As we've already said, Coinbase was an early cryptocurrency exchange, and if you value a large user base as a measure of security, then it's hard to go better than Coinbase or Binance. They’ve had hiccups, however, like their recent settlement which led to it downsizing by 12%.

Most, if not all, regular traders of cryptocurrency have utilised this enormous cryptocurrency exchange for quite some time.

With almost 73 million verified users, this site must be completely absurd. The platform gives you access to over £190 billion in equities and has a high volume of trades.

Since Coinbase has secured many trading permits and is licensed as a money services organisation, it is available to individuals in more than 100 countries. Funding opportunities might vary greatly across countries. But British traders should take advantage of fee-free wire transfers (other options result in massive fees for most platforms, including CoinB).

Buying cryptocurrency in the UK via Coinbase: You just need to know your single login details to log into Coinbase and Coinbase Pro after you've signed up for Coinbase. If you're interested in more complex trading tools, Pro could be the way to go. However, what are the expenses? The base fee for both makers and takers is 0.5%, with higher rates available for more frequent and larger trading volumes.

Most transactions will land in the 0.35% to 0.50% range. If you're searching for a major exchange that's completely regulated and has fair fees, CB is a great option. They recently made one hundred coins available, which is more than sufficient for most people.

And you don't even need a Coinbase account to utilise their fantastic mobile app to store your Bitcoin privately and securely. You can fit up to 500 different coin types inside. This is one of the best crypto wallets for mobile devices, and it's free.

Not sure? Think about consulting a financial advisor. Also, you can look for other sources of practical budgeting and money advice, like Dave Ramsey

Crypto.com: Review — Top Crypto Exchange For Purportedly Low Fees

Check out Crypto.com if you want to acquire cryptocurrency at a reduced cost. With over 10 million users on the site, Crypto.com has earned its place as one of the top UK crypto exchanges.

More than 150 different digital currencies are available for trading on Crypto.com, and users may do so using either the mobile app or the website. The NFT app allows users to trade in and out of the most popular NFTs on the market.

Maker and taker costs on Crypto.com begin at 0.4% for both parties, with a 10% discount available to those that have CRO in their wallets at all times. The key point is that deposits to Crypto.com are free, but withdrawals will have costs associated with them depending on the currency being withdrawn.

One of Crypto.com's best features is the ability to instantaneously purchase cryptocurrency using a credit or debit card; this generally incurs a 2.99% charge but is waived for the first 30 days of usage.

Crypto.com's trading app prioritises ease of use by providing prominent placement on the front page for live market data and trending tickers, making it ideal for newcomers. Price charts and select information for each cryptocurrency are also available to users, with a range of time intervals to choose from.

Users may now use the Crypto.com VISA card to make purchases using cryptocurrency as if it were FIAT money, with no yearly fees and up to 8% cashback.

★ Further reading: Best ‘all-purpose’ trading services

Gemini: Review — Useful Crypto Exchange for Beginners Learning Crypto

Who is Gemini a good match for? Gemini is a purportedly wonderful option for novice crypto investors who are still learning the ropes because of its user-friendly website and extensive teaching materials.

Cryptocurrency trading veterans will find a welcoming home in Gemini's robust security offerings, trading platform, and yield-earning product, Gemini Earn, as well as the exchange's staking feature, Gemini Staking.

Among the many available options, Gemini is the best one for beginners to enter the cryptocurrency market. While the Cryptopedia tutorials and the accompanying software make learning about cryptocurrencies a breeze, the platform's sophisticated trading features come at a high cost.

Gemini's Gemini Earn and Gemini Staking products are two of many available ways to make money using the Gemini platform. Gemini Earn offers its users incentives on over 40 different cryptocurrencies. Gemini Earn is not technically a staking scheme, but rather a lending platform where users can make interest-bearing loans against their cryptocurrency holdings.

Users can earn an ROI on their cryptocurrency holdings on an annualised basis. The New York-based exchange promotes a maximum APY of 8.05% for its members. Gemini Staking is an option for people who desire to passively stake their cryptocurrency assets for a return.

You may want to go elsewhere than this Winklevoss-founded site if you want a comprehensive list of cryptocurrencies to invest in. The only two cryptocurrencies you can stake on Gemini are Ethereum (ETH) and Cardano (ADA).

Step 3: Pay for Crypto Ideally Using a Bank Account

If you’re not failing, you’re not pushing your limits, and if you’re not pushing your limits, you’re not maximizing your potential.

Ray Dalio, Principles (Source).

Step three of buying cryptocurrency (in 2024 in the UK) is knowing that different coins can only be bought after your account with a cryptocurrency exchange or brokerage firm has been funded either by swapping one crypto coin for another or using fiat cash. In the latter case, you are effectively exchanging conventional currency for cryptocurrency. 

Seeing as you’re reading a guide on how to buy crypto, let’s assume you’re swapping fiat for crypto. It’s worth asking the question: Why make the switch to cryptocurrency? 

Government-issued money is considered fiat currency and is thus safeguarded by a central bank. To name a few instances of fiat currencies, we may look to the British Sterling, Euro, US dollar, Yuan, Ruble, and Yen. These were formerly backed by a valuable commodity like gold.

Only the credit rating of a national government can guarantee them today at this time. Fiat currencies normally require an intermediary like a credit card, bank, or the government to complete financial transactions.

Bitcoin and other cryptos are digital currencies that are “mined” (created) on a distributed network of computers rather than by a central bank or government (although some stablecoins are issued by governments and CBDCs will be potentially coming in the future).

Some cryptos, like Bitcoin, have a hard limit on the total production, resulting in a synthetic scarcity that is similar to that of precious metals despite the fact that they are not underpinned by anything tangible like gold.

There are a number of upsides, one of which is the increased diversity of your cash holdings. Since ETH is decentralised, its value is less dependent on the economy of any one nation. Originally, crypto transactions were confidential and not subject to the oversight of any central authority or third party. However, this is changing in a lot of ways rapidly.

However, the market value of cryptocurrencies may vary more significantly and suddenly than that of conventional currencies.

Link your bank account so you get the best rates

In other words, you are exchanging fiat money for cryptocurrency. Based on the platform, you may also be able to trade one cryptocurrency for another.

When transferring funds, it is common practice to do so from a checking or savings account. Other common forms of payment include debit cards and direct payments from payment services.

Several major banks, including Virgin Money, TSB, and Tesco Bank, have recently begun to prevent its customers from using credit cards to make transactions on crypto exchanges. When using a credit or debit card to buy bitcoin, be aware that certain providers may charge you a fee in addition to the transaction price.

Step 5: Store Your Cryptocurrency Using a Wallet

After your cryptocurrency payment settles, the next step is to store it securely. Despite the availability of online services that will store your bitcoin for you, some investors choose to do so in order to avoid the risk of hacking.

The great majority of large exchanges insure client holdings and store the vast majority of their assets offline to prevent catastrophic theft, thus this is to be expected. In cases where exchanges have been hacked, there are cases where they have reimbursed customers for their damages. The security of your cryptocurrency may be ensured by using one of two kinds of third-party wallets, though:

  • ★ Just leave the cryptocurrency on the exchange. When you make a cryptocurrency purchase, the digital money you acquire will most likely be kept in a “crypto wallet” that is associated with the trading platform. You have the option to decide later whether to move your cryptocurrency away from the exchange and into a hot or cold wallet if you are uncomfortable with the security measures taken by the exchange, or if you just prefer a different provider. There may be a little cost associated with this transaction, depending on the currency conversion and the amount being sent.
  • ★ “Hot wallets” refers to e-wallets that may be opened from any device connected to the internet. It's common for crypto exchanges to provide these wallets at no additional cost, but you're free to use your own if you want private storage of your bitcoin. Their continued connectivity, though, makes them easier targets for cybercriminals.
  • ★ In contrast, “cold wallets” are offline storage devices that can be used to keep bitcoin safe. They may be purchased for as little as £30 and as much as £150. Cold wallets are preferable to hot wallets due to their increased security, but they are more cumbersome to use because of the need to physically connect them to the internet whenever bitcoin has to be accessed. If you have a lot of cryptocurrencies, this may be a good investment.

⭐ Further reading: Best Crypto Wallets in the UK

I've been quoted [saying] ‘cash is trash.' That cash, which most investors think is the safest investment is, I think, the worst investment.

Ray Dalio on Cryptocurrency (Source)

Selling Ethereum: Some Suggestions

Once you've decided how much crypto you want to sell, go back to your preferred exchange. If you want to sell a substantial quantity of cryptocurrencies, though, you should probably consult a tax professional. Despite being theoretically decentralised, crypto doesn't have many advantages over centralised currencies for things like privacy and anonymity.

There may be advantages, nonetheless, to do with opening up greater ease of doing business anywhere in the world across borders. Any profits gained from selling crypto are subject to tax, as well as regular income paid in crypto.

What is Cryptocurrency?

Before making a sizable investment in crypto, make sure you're prepared. Have a substantial “emergency reserve” and avoid taking on too much debt. Many experts agree that even if you match all of these criteria, you should still only invest a modest sum in your portfolio.

No matter what kind of asset you're looking to invest in — stocks, ETFs, bonds, or anything else — you should always do your research before making a purchase. Remember that you are putting your own money on the line in the hopes of earning a return.

As a result, cryptocurrencies are also known as digital currencies since they may be used to make transactions such as buying goods online or sending money to other people. Since there is no analogue world in which cryptocurrencies may exist, this means that they are entirely virtual.

When compared to more conventional currencies like the British pound or the Euro, cryptocurrencies have a number of distinguishing features.

(These features have shrunken since Bitcoin’s inception.)

To name a few distinct features of the original concept:

  • Cryptocurrencies are “decentralised” (in principle, not practice)and hence not under the authority of any central bank or government. Instead, they operate in a decentralised fashion. (On paper). 
  • Blockchain technology is the basis for the majority of cryptocurrencies. Because of this, every exchange is private and untraceable. (No longer true).
  • The blockchain records every purchase and sale of bitcoin ever made. Because of this, the network is completely open and safe from any kind of misuse. (There have been hacks). 
  • Cryptocurrencies function independently of national boundaries. In other words, sending coins across the world will cost exactly the same as sending them across the country. (Again, taxes and CBCDs are going to transform this to some degree). 

You’re of course familiar with Bitcoin at this point (BTC). The reason for this is that Bitcoin was the first and is now the most popular cryptocurrency. It's the most well-known brand and has the highest market value. Bitcoin may be the most well-known cryptocurrency, but you’ll find many other trendy meme currencies, such as Baby DogeCoin.

In fact, there are already more than 15,000 distinct cryptocurrencies, with a combined market value of over £1 trillion, allegedly. Bitcoin presently accounts for around 40% of this total, while Ethereum is responsible for about 18%. 

A cryptocurrency may be used for several purposes, depending on the project. The Ripple payment network facilitates international wire transfers, while Bitcoin serves as a payment system.

In spite of this, the great majority of UK residents who purchase cryptocurrencies do so only for speculative purposes. To get exposure to cryptocurrencies that are volatile due to social excitement, emotional trading and geopolitical warfare for control.

That is to say, some people expect the value of their investment will rise over time because they think cryptocurrencies will play a significant part in the future of money. How much of a role, who knows?

I view [crypto] as an alternative money in an environment where the value of cash money is depreciating in real terms.

Ray Dalio (Source)

What is a Cryptocurrency Exchange?

What exactly is a cryptocurrency exchange?

A cryptocurrency exchange is a digital marketplace where cryptocurrency transactions may take place. When compared to other cryptocurrency investment vehicles, exchanges' cheap fees may seem enticing, but their often-complicated user interfaces, which may include many trading kinds and detailed performance charts, may be too much for some crypto novices to handle.

Coinbase, Gemini, and eToro are among the most prominent cryptocurrency exchanges. The conventional trading interfaces used by these organisations may be intimidating to newcomers, especially those with no experience trading equities.

There is a penalty to this ease of use since the prices for the more beginner-friendly alternatives on each site are far more than they would be for the identical cryptocurrency purchases made using the platforms' native trading interfaces. In order to save money, you should probably understand how to use the common trading platforms before you buy any cryptocurrency (or soon after).

Keep in mind that if you are a newcomer to the cryptocurrency market, you will want to make sure that the exchange or brokerage you choose supports the transfer and purchase of sterling and other fiat currencies. In order to get started trading cryptocurrencies on your favourite exchange, you may first need to discover another exchange that accepts the tokens your preferred exchange deals in.

Related: Best Crypto-Friendly Banks in the UK

Alternative Ways of Investing in Cryptocurrency

While it's true that investing in cryptocurrencies has become more popular, many people still shouldn't put their money in this highly speculative and perhaps disastrous market (Bitcoin Price History: 2009-2022). However, there are a few alternatives that may be a suitable way to invest in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Here are ways you can still have a stake in cryptocurrency even if you don’t buy them outright:

1. Crypto ETFs

One of the most common ways to invest is via exchange-traded funds (ETFs), which allow investors to get exposure to a large number of different assets with a single transaction. Therefore, they provide instant diversification and are often safer than choosing individual assets on one's own.

Demand is high for exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that invest in several cryptocurrencies. In the fall of 2021, the first bitcoin ETFs were available to retail investors.

2. Buy shares in companies linked to cryptocurrencies 

You can get exposure to the cryptocurrency market by purchasing stocks in a company that uses or owns cryptocurrencies and the blockchain technology that underpins them, even if you prefer to invest in more traditional, regulated corporations. To invest in publicly traded corporations such as:

  • Nvidia (NVDA) — The graphics processing units (GPUs) that form the backbone of bitcoin mining hardware are designed and sold by this technological business.
  • PayPal (PYPL) — Aside from being widely used for online shopping and remittances, this payment processor now supports the purchase and sale of some cryptocurrencies using users' existing PayPal and Venmo accounts.
  • The small company payment processor Square (SQ) has made Bitcoin purchases totalling millions of dollars since October 2020. The company said in February 2021 that Bitcoin constituted around 5% of its cash reserves. It's also possible to purchase, sell, and store cryptocurrencies through Square's Cash App.

It is important to evaluate your financial condition and investment objectives before making any financial commitments. One tweet may cause a dramatic drop in the value of cryptocurrency, and investing in the market is still fraught with risk.

Our Conclusion

You can't possibly make it any easier than buying crypto in ten minutes, can you?

We’ve done the impossible. Buying cryptocurrency in the UK in 2024 is outlined below.

Here’s a reminder of the steps:

  • First register. Getting started with eToro is as simple as visiting their website and clicking the “Join Now” button. You may easily create a login name and password by entering some personal information. Your capital is at risk.
  • The next thing to do is to pass KYC. You’ll need to verify your identification and use a billing address associated with your eToro account before you can buy crypto. This is so people like the HMRC know what’s happening.

eToro logo

Don’t invest unless you’re prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take 2 mins to learn more.

  • Thirdly, deposit some pounds & pennies. You need to have at least $50 in your chosen payment method to begin trading.
  • Buy crypto! Just enter the desired cryptocurrency (such as “BTC” or “DOGE”) in the search field, and then click “Trade” to purchase the cryptocurrency.

So long, then. But if you want to go through some of the common questions people ask when learning how to buy cryptocurrency, so you don’t make an obvious error, keep reading! Go on… You're interested, and we can tell.

Related Guides:

FAQs

Buying cryptocurrency: is it legal in the UK?

Can you use Binance in the UK now?

Do you get taxed on crypto UK?

Can HMRC track crypto?

Who pays you when you sell crypto?

How do you transfer crypto to bank UK?

Which UK banks blocked crypto?

Is Coinbase legal in the UK?

Do UK withdrawals from Coinbase incur fees?

Does Coinbase charge a monthly fee?

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