Where to buy crypto when you just can’t wait.
In a hurry?
If there’s a bitcoin ATM near you, that’s probably the quickest way to buy bitcoin.
To buy bitcoin fast, the main thing to know is that verification is almost always the slowest part.
- Verification is when a bitcoin service confirms your identification and details.
- It frequently takes several business days to get verified.
- After verification, you can usually buy bitcoin in a few minutes.
The fastest way to buy bitcoin is to do one of the following:
- Already be verified
- Buy somewhere that doesn’t require verification
Where to buy without verification
There are three main ways to buy bitcoin without verification. If any of them work for you, that might be one of the fastest ways to buy bitcoin.
- Low-limit exchanges. Many services will let you buy a limited amount of bitcoin without verification, such as US$150 worth of bitcoin at Coinmama. If you only want a relatively small amount to start with, that might be the most efficient option.
- Local bitcoin buying. Peer-to-peer bitcoin services, such as LocalBitcoins, are matchmakers between buyers and sellers. You can find and contact sellers directly, and pay using whatever method you agree on. This might be a good option if you can find a suitable seller and don’t mind paying a bit more than elsewhere.
- Cryptocurrency exchanges. On some exchanges, verification is only required for fiat currency deposits or withdrawals. If you have other cryptocurrencies, you can often trade them for bitcoin with no verification. For example, you can do this at Bitfinex or Changelly.
Other than verification, you also need to consider any applicable transfer times.
How to find the quickest transfer times
To buy fast, the main transfer to worry about is your deposit. This is where you send money to the seller.
- You should typically expect processing on business days and during business hours only.
- Make your deposits earlier in the day for quicker processing. Afternoon transfers might be processed the next day instead of on the same day.
The transfer times are mostly down to your preferred payment method. Different exchanges will support different payment methods.
|Payment method||How long it usually takes|
|POLi bank transfer||Next business day|
|Credit card||0-3 business days depending on the card, the bank and the bitcoin service|
|Cash at a newsagent (blueshyft)||Instant|
|Cash at a bank branch or ATM||Next business day|
|BPAY||1-2 business days|
|Money transfer service (eg, Western Union or MoneyGram)||1-2 days (may vary by destination country)|
|Wire transfer||1-2 business days|
How long do bitcoin transfers take?
At their fastest, bitcoin can be sent and received within minutes. However, it depends on the network load and your transaction fees.
Fortunately, once the deposit is received, you’ve locked in the order for the cryptocurrency. Even if it takes a while to arrive, it’s on its way.
How do I buy bitcoin fast after verification and deposit?
Once you’re verified and your deposit has arrived on the exchange, you can typically buy at market rates almost instantly.
To make near-instant purchases as needed and at a decent price, you might want to maintain a verified account on an exchange, with money ready to go.
What’s the downside to buying fast?
When you want to buy fast or with no verification, you’ll often need to pay premium prices. You will typically find the best value for money on large low-fee exchanges.