7 Best Coinbase Alternatives - Save Money & Privacy (2021)

This guide shows you all the best Coinbase alternatives you need to know.

Don't worry - you won't need to give up any of the ease-of-use that Coinbase is famous for.

But you will get to:

  • Experience less downtime
  • Save on fees
  • Use more Payment Methods
  • Take back some of your privacy
Best Coinbase Alternatives

If that’s what you’re looking for, you’re in the right place.

Keep reading…

  • Popular Exchanges
  • Coinmama
    • Works in almost all countries
    • Highest limits for buying bitcoins with a credit card
    • Reliable and trusted broker
  • eToro
    • Supports Bitcoin, Ethereum & 15 other coins
    • Start trading fast; high limits
    • Your capital is at risk.

    This ad promotes virtual cryptocurrency investing within the EU (by eToro Europe Ltd. and eToro UK Ltd.) & USA (by eToro USA LLC); which is highly volatile, unregulated in most EU countries, no EU protections & not supervised by the EU regulatory framework. Investments are subject to market risk, including the loss of principal.

  • Bitpanda
    • Best for Germany, Netherlands, Italy, France & rest of Europe
    • Extra features like ability to buy bullion
    • Trusted exchange

Top Coinbase Alternatives In-Depth

BitpandaBitpanda Buy Bitcoin Read Review

Bitpanda is a Bitcoin broker based in Europe.

They have high payment limits and low fees across their wide range of payment methods.

Bitpanda offers customers the option to buy bitcoins with credit card, debit card, SOFORT, Skrill, NETELLER, giropay, eps, SEPA, and Online Bank Transfer.

Our guide will show you how to buy bitcoins with a credit card on Bitpanda.

We may receive compensation when you use Bitpanda. Please visit Bitpanda for its exact pricing terms.

Pros
  • Some of the lowest fees for buying bitcoins with credit/debit card
  • Reliable and trusted broker
Cons
  • Fees aren't shown openly on the site but instead included in the buying price
Buy Bitcoin Read Review

CoinmamaCoinmama Buy Bitcoin Read Review

Coinmama allows customers in almost every country to buy bitcoin. They charge a 4.9%-5.9% (depends on volume) fee on each purchase.

Customers in Europe can also purchase bitcoins with SEPA transfer for a lower fee.

Want to buy using Coinmama? This step-by-step guide will show you how to use Coinmama.

We may receive compensation when you use Coinmama. Please visit Coinmama for its exact pricing terms.

Pros
  • Works in almost all countries
  • Highest limits for buying bitcoins with a credit card
  • Reliable and trusted broker
Cons
  • Some of the highest fees among credit/debit card bitcoin brokers
Buy Bitcoin Read Review

CEX.ioCEX.io Buy Bitcoin Read Review

CEX.io lets you buy bitcoin with a credit card, ACH bank transfer, SEPA transfer, cash, or AstroPay. Purchases made with a credit card give you access to your bitcoin immediately. CEX.io works in the United States, Europe, and certain countries in South America.

We may receive compensation when you use CEX.io. Please visit CEX.io for its exact pricing terms.

Pros
  • Support for many countries and regions
  • Low 0.2% trading fee
  • Established and trusted exchange
Cons
  • Verification process is extensive, requiring much personal information (including a photo) and incurring a long delay
  • GBP market lacks liquidity
Buy Bitcoin Read Review

Why Choose a Different Exchange than Coinbase?

There are many reasons you might not want to do your trading or buying on Coinbase.

Limited Payment Methods

In most countries, Coinbase offers very few payment options.

For the most part, you’ll be stuck using standard bank transfers or really high fee card purchases or bank wires.

Sometimes you aren’t even allowed to use a credit card at all.

No Proof of Reserves

proof of reserves

Many Bitcoin enthusiasts got into Bitcoin because they like the fact that there is a cap on supply. This prevents inflation from occuring.

However, if a large institution like Coinbase is holding enough coins on deposit, they can use them to manipulate the market.

As long as enough people don’t withdraw their coins at once, it will always appear as though your coins are sitting in your account.

Here is a short one-minute video of how fractional reserves works



Fractional Reserve Banking is More of the Same

This is called fractional reserve banking (because the institution only has a fraction of the total number of coins on deposit).

This is a way around the supply cap because when you deposit your coins on Coinbase, you essentially have an IOU from coinbase for your coins.

Coinbase may actually be using your coins to trade or manipulate the market.

There is no way of knowing for sure unless you go to withdraw your coins. And even if they can give you your coins, they may have just taken them from another depositer.

This is what happened with Mt. Gox and Bitfinex’s Tether.

We now have a way for exchanges to cryptographically prove they have full reserves via Blockstreams Proof of Reserves tool.

blockstream proof of reserves

However, exchanges must agree to the audit. So far the only exchange that has done so and passsed is Kraken.

That Coinbase has not agreed to this audit indicates they do not have full reserves on deposit and so

server downtime

Downtime

Coinbase is known for being down during big price moves.

During the 2017 crypto boom, Coinbase went down or had delays 99 times.

That is almost once every 3 days…

And this can be very aggravating if you are trying to sell or buy or move your coins during major market movements and you cannot do it.

Imagine you need to change a buy order on coinbase because the market is moving against you and you are met with this screen:


coinbase down

That is what thousands of traders were met with on a daily basis in 2017.

Coinbase maintains that these outages and delays are due to various technical issues. But many users wonder if it is to take advantage of market conditions using user funds.

Regardless of the reason, if you want an exchange that has a more reliable server status, one of the exchanges listed above may be a better fit for you.

Intrusions of Privacy

Neutrino and Hacking Team

privacy

In 2019, Coinbase announced they had acquired blockchain analysis firm Neutrino.

What they did not mention at the time (but was discovered in the following week) was that Neutrino was founded by ex-Hacking Team members.

According to Wikipedia,

HackingTeam is a Milan-based information technology company that sells...its products and services to governments with poor human rights records, including Sudan, Bahrain, Venezuela, and Saudi Arabia.

Coinbase had effectively hired a blockchain spyware development startup to monitor user on their platform.

Vice ran an editorial on Neutrino’s past and Coinbase acknowledged it, but initially brushed it off.


Vice article on neutrino

One week later, Coinbase agreed to “transition out” the members of Neutrino who had previously been a part of Hacking Team.

We took some time to dig further into this over the past week...those who previously worked at Hacking Team..., will transition out of Coinbase.

bryan armstrongBrian Armstrong CEO, Coinbase

The damage had been done, though. Many Bitcoiners called on others to #DeleteCoinbase.

We now know that Coinbase is utilizing Neutrino’s tech to discover as much as they can about your transactions on their platform.

And Neutrino’s story doesn’t end here.

Coinbase Work with DEA and IRS

In June of 2020, US governmental contracting disclosure documents surfaced.

These documents showed that Coinbase had bid on a contract to supply the IRS and the DEA with data designed to doxx the identities behind Bitcoin addresses.

coinbase dea irs collusion

Coinbase Works with Secret Service

The following month in July 2020, it was also discovered that Coinbase had secured a 4 year contract to provide this data to the US Secret Service.

Brian Armstrong had this to say about the situation:



If that is something that you’d prefer to keep to yourself, you may want to choose a different exchange.

In February of 2019, Coinbase listed XRP for sale on its platform, and has been offering it ever since.

That is, until January of 2020 when the SEC sued XRP founding company Ripple Labs for selling unregistered securities.

Since Coinbase sold XRP as well, they too could be in trouble.

While no lawsuit against Coinbase has been made by the SEC, that doesn’t mean one isn’t coming.

And worst of all, if you bought XRP on Coinbase, you are not allowed, to sell it or convert it.

Coinbase is effectively holding your coins hostage on its platform to save itself from further legal liability.

More Coinbase Alternatives

gemini and kraken

There are a few more websites better than Coinbase out there.

For instance, Gemini is an app like Coinbase that is one of the fastest-growing Bitcoin exchanges globally.

Unfortunately, it supports limited areas such as the U.S., Canada, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and the United Kingdom.

However, Gemini’s advantage is that it doesn’t charge fees for wire deposits or withdrawals .

Kraken is another company similar to Coinbase.

It offers some of the best security and privacy among centralized exchanges.

However, the likes of CEX.IO, Coinmama, and Luno have something for everyone looking beyond Coinbase, which is why they are among our list of best Coinbase alternatives out there.

Uniswap Flippening

If you are interested in trading ETH and ERC20 tokens and prefer to use decentralized exchanges, then the biggest one right now is Uniswap.


uniswap homepage


On Uniswap, users can trade between various trading pairs via Uniswap’s smart contracts without handing over their coins to centralized exchange. Instead they are deposited into the smart contract which then handles the trades.

The most interesting thing about Uniswap right now though is that its trade volume recently eclipsed that of Coinbase’s.


uniswap overtakes coinbase on volume


Conclusion

These are the best Coinbase alternatives on the market in 2020. They offer a good mix of improved privacy, better fees, and less downtime.

All of these are issues Coinbase has struggled with.

But what do you think? Are we missing a great exchange?

Hit that contact button to share your favorite Coinbase alternatives with us.

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