Everything You Need To Know About Buying Bitcoins at an ATM
Bitcoin ATMs, often known as BTMs, have made the process of buying Bitcoin extremely convenient and user-friendly in the digital world. However, it is crucial for first-time users and novice investors to understand the ins and outs of these ATMs before delving into Bitcoin transactions.
Throughout this guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know before buying Bitcoin at an ATM
What are bitcoin ATMs?
Bitcoin ATMs are machines that you can use to buy and sell bitcoin. These BTMs, or Bitcoin Teller Machines, allow users to deposit cash into their accounts and purchase BTC with it. The process is similar to using a regular ATM but instead of withdrawing cash from your bank account, you’re buying cryptocurrency with fiat money (dollars).
While Bitcoin ATMs and Bitcoin cloud mining are related to the cryptocurrency ecosystem, they serve different purposes. Bitcoin ATMs primarily focus on facilitating easy and instant cryptocurrency transactions, while Bitcoin cloud mining aims to provide an alternative way of participating in the mining process without the need for costly hardware.
There are many different types of BTM around the world including ones that only accept cash deposits while others allow customers to make both deposits and withdrawals through their own bank accounts via an app or web interface.
In the case of Bitcoin ATMs, the trading pair would involve Bitcoin and a fiat currency (such as USD, EUR, etc.). Essentially, it’s the pair of currencies that a customer can either buy or sell from the ATM. For instance, if a Bitcoin ATM offers transactions in Bitcoin and USD, then the trading pair is Bitcoin/USD or BTCUSDT.
How to buy bitcoin from a bitcoin ATM
Buying Bitcoin from a Bitcoin ATM is a straightforward process if you have the correct information and resources. Here’s a step-by-step guide explaining how to make a purchase:
Step 1: Find a Bitcoin ATM
Use online resources such as Coin ATM Radar to locate a Bitcoin ATM near you.
Step 2: Choose the ‘Buy Bitcoin’ Option
Select the ‘Buy Bitcoin’ option on the ATM screen.
Step 3: Provide a Bitcoin Address
This is the address where the purchased Bitcoin will be sent. You can provide this address in two ways:
Scan the QR code on your mobile Bitcoin wallet
Use a public address via a paper wallet
Step 4: Input Cash
Insert the cash or swipe your card on the ATM. You’ll then see how much Bitcoin you will receive for the amount of cash deposited.
Step 5: Confirm Transaction
Review the details provided on the screen about the transaction. If all the details are correct, confirm the transaction.
Step 6: Get a Transaction Receipt
Once the transaction is processed, the Bitcoin ATM will print a receipt. This receipt includes details about the transaction and might come in handy if there’s an issue with the transaction.
Advantages of bitcoin ATMs
Ease of use: Bitcoin ATMs are user-friendly and allow even those with limited technical knowledge to easily buy or sell cryptocurrencies.
Instant exchange: Transactions for buying or selling cryptocurrencies through these ATMs are usually processed quickly, enabling users to access their funds almost instantly.
Anonymity: Bitcoin ATMs offer a certain level of anonymity for users, especially those conducting smaller transactions that do not require identification. However, for larger transactions, additional documentation may be required.
Accessibility: Installing Bitcoin ATMs in accessible locations helps promote cryptocurrency adoption, making it more convenient for people to start using digital currencies.
Bypasses banks: Bitcoin ATMs allow users to directly interact with cryptocurrencies without needing a traditional bank account, which can be a significant advantage for those who are unbanked or underbanked.
Fiat-to-crypto currency conversion: Users can easily convert their fiat currency (e.g., USD, EUR) into cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, or Litecoin, and vice versa.
No online exchanges needed: Bitcoin ATMs remove the need for online exchanges, which can sometimes be confusing or complicated for new users.
Increased security: While not completely immune to security risks, Bitcoin ATMs generally minimize potential risks associated with online platforms, such as hacks and phishing attacks.
Disadvantages of bitcoin ATMs
High Transaction Fees: Bitcoin ATMs are notorious for their high transaction fees which can go up to 20% and sometimes even 30% per transaction.
Limited Accessibility: Bitcoin ATMs are concentrated in high population cities and locations, therefore accessibility can be a limiting factor.
Unreliability: There have been cases where Bitcoin ATMs are known to malfunction or even disappear.
Price Markup: Some operators are known to markup the price, leading to users paying more than the actual price of the cryptocurrency.
What do you need to buy Bitcoin at a Bitcoin ATM?
To buy Bitcoin at a Bitcoin ATM, you typically need the following:
A Bitcoin wallet: A digital wallet is required to store the purchased Bitcoins. You can use a mobile or hardware wallet for this purpose.
Identification (depending on the transaction amount): For some Bitcoin ATMs, a valid form of photo ID and address might be required for verification, especially for larger transactions.
Cash or debit/credit card: You’ll need to have either cash or a debit/credit card to insert into the machine to purchase the Bitcoin.
Bitcoin address (QR code): To receive the purchased Bitcoin, you need to provide your wallet’s public address, usually in the form of a QR code, which the machine will scan to complete the transaction.
To buy Bitcoin at a Bitcoin ATM, follow these general steps:
- Locate a Bitcoin ATM nearby.
- Insert cash or use a debit/credit card (depends on the ATM’s accepted payment methods).
- Scan or enter your wallet’s public address (QR code).
- Confirm the transaction to complete the purchase
Can you purchase Bitcoin with cash at a Bitcoin ATM?
Yes, you can purchase Bitcoin with cash at a Bitcoin ATM. Many Bitcoin ATMs around the world allow users to buy and sell Bitcoin using cash. To do so, you simply need to locate a nearby Bitcoin ATM, insert the cash, provide your Bitcoin wallet address (usually by scanning a QR code), and confirm the transaction.
Keep in mind that specific steps may vary, depending on the model of the Bitcoin ATM and the operator. Also, some Bitcoin ATMs may charge high transaction fees, which you should take into consideration when purchasing Bitcoin with cash at an ATM.
How much is the Bitcoin ATM fee?
Bitcoin ATM fees vary depending on the operator and location, but typically they range from 7% to 20% per transaction. The average fee for purchases at a Bitcoin ATM is reported to be about 7% higher than the spot price for Bitcoin. Some companies may charge fees greater than 30% on their transactions, while most fees fall between 16-25%. It is important to note that fees are generally higher at Bitcoin ATMs compared to online cryptocurrency exchanges.
How do I deposit money into a Bitcoin ATM?
To deposit money into a Bitcoin ATM, follow these general steps:
- Locate a Bitcoin ATM nearby. You can use websites or apps such as Coin ATM Radar or Bitcoin.com to find one.
- Once at the Bitcoin ATM, select the option to buy Bitcoin, as you will be depositing cash to purchase it.
- Insert the cash amount you want to deposit into the provided cash receiver. Most Bitcoin ATMs accept cash deposits, but check beforehand if the specific ATM you are using accepts cash deposits.
- Provide your Bitcoin wallet address. You can do this by scanning the QR code from your wallet app or entering the address manually.
- Confirm the transaction details, including the amount and wallet address. The Bitcoin ATM will process the transaction and send the purchased Bitcoin to your wallet.
Buying Bitcoin at an ATM can be an easy and fast way to obtain the leading cryptocurrency. Bitcoin ATMs are a convenient method to buy Bitcoin, provided you are prepared to pay the high transaction fees and are mindful of security considerations. As always, it is important to do your own research and ensure you are using a trustworthy service.