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What is the cheapest way to buy cryptocurrency? How to start investing in digital cash

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Manager buying cryptocurrency through mobile phone app
Cryptocurrency can be bought and sold online through digital marketplaces (Getty)

Cryptocurrency is a topic rarely out of the news at the moment.

Whether it’s the highs and lows of bitcoin or the sudden explosion of a joke crypto like dogecoin – crypto is certainly having a moment.

Although (as with any investment) there’s a high degree of risk, we’d forgive you for being curious about how to own some cryptocurrency yourself.

In the same way as if you were buying stocks or funds, you’ll need to sign up for an online account with a broker.

There are numerous ones to choose from and, naturally, you’ll want to do some research before deciding.

These online sites work as your kind of cryptocurrency bank account. All you have to do is sign up to the site, like you would any other and put in your card details.

Then you will be instructed to buy bitcoin, or etherium, or dogecoin or whatever you want. And, just as easily, you can sell anything you don’t want anymore.

Some of these sites will have app versions, but it is recommended that you start up your account online for a smooth starting process.

Since bitcoins and other cryptos are divisible you can buy a really small amount of them if you have limited funds you’re willing to put in.

It’s also best advised to set up extra security, such as two-factor authentication, if you do go ahead and set up an account.

Fees for cryptocurrency trades

ISTANBUL, TURKEY - APRIL 16: A message offering cryptocurrency exchange rates is seen on the screen of a Bitcoin ATM installed at a shopping mall on April 16, 2021 in Istanbul, Turkey. Turkey's Central Bank announced a ban on the use of cryptocurrencies and crypto assets for purchases, directly or indirectly to pay for goods or services. The announcement comes as Turkey's crypto market has boomed over the past few years. As the Turkish Lira has slumped, many people have looked to cryptocurrencies to shelter against inflation. Cryptocurrencies gained traction globally this week after cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase launched on the New York Stock Exchange. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
A message offering cryptocurrency exchange rates is seen on the screen of a Bitcoin ATM installed at a shopping mall in Istanbul, Turkey. (Getty)

When thinking about the cheapest way to buy cryptocurrency, it’s important to look at any fees charged on transactions you make.

As of right now, perhaps the best two places to look are Coinbase and Binance. The former is simpler to use but the latter is cheaper.

Binance will charge you 0.02% to 0.10% purchase and trading fees and 3% to 4.5% for debit card purchases. Meanwhile, Coinbase stands at 0.50% per trade, 3.99% for credit card purchases and 1.49% for Coinbase wallet or bank account purchases. These are correct at time of writing, but could also change over time.

If we’re talking about cost, then naturally some cryptos are going to cost more than others. Bitcoin is the most well-known but there are multiple other cryptos to choose from. Binance has over 500 different cryptos that you can invest in.

A few other marketplaces to look into are ETX Capital, Etoro, Plus500, Avatrade and Buy Virtual Currency.

What is bitcoin?

In this photo illustration the Bitcoin logo is seen on a
The bitcoin logo is seen on a smartphone screen with price in the background. (Getty)

Bitcoin is perhaps the best known type of cryptocurrency.

It works without a central bank and is usually exchanged from person-to-person when it is sold or exchanged, without anyone working in-between to overlook the transaction.

Some people like the fact that Bitcoin is not controlled by the government or banks.

It was first released in 2009 and its value has fluctuated over the last 12 years.

Only 21 million bitcoins can ever be created in order to protect the value of the bitcoin system.

Bitcoins can be ‘mined’, which is the process of actually creating bitcoins, or they can be bought using regular currency.

Bitcoins are made or ‘mined’ by computer power on the bitcoin network.

What is bitcoin?

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