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How To Buy Bitcoin In Europe

Last updated 9th May 2022
Disclosure

Due to its high price, Bitcoin demands significant investments. Therefore, it is prudent to research and consider multiple factors before buying.

Currently, most countries in Europe allow you to buy and sell Bitcoin.

This article covers critical topics for those interested in buying Bitcoin in Europe. Our focus ranges from evaluating the best platforms and their features to the step-by-step guidelines to buy Bitcoin.

Best Brokers To Buy Bitcoin in Europe in 2022

Evaluating and picking the correct partner for your Bitcoin investment journey can be daunting. Due to the many factors that you'll have to consider, we have gone ahead and selected the top Bitcoin providers in Europe. See our recommendations below:

1
eToro
Minimum Deposit
$200
Exclusive Promotion
User Score
10
More than 3,000 assets, including currencies, stocks, cryptocurrencies, ETFs, indices and commodities
Buy crypto, or trade cryptocurrencies via CFDs
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.
2
Atani
Minimum Deposit
$100
Exclusive Promotion
User Score
9
Popular among traders
Fast system for trading
Popular for beginners
3
Coinmama
Minimum Deposit
$100
Exclusive Promotion
User Score
9
Easy to use tool
High profit potential
Offers Phone Support
4
UpHold
Minimum Deposit
$1
Exclusive Promotion
User Score
7
130+ cryptocurrencies and utility tokens available
Highly rated
Clear user interface
5
Coinbase
Minimum Deposit
$50
Exclusive Promotion
User Score
6
Trade and invest in over 25 cryptocurrencies
Extremely simple user interface
Over 68 million customers
6
Paybis
Minimum Deposit
$50
Exclusive Promotion
User Score
5
First transaction fee free
24/7 customer service
Instant payouts

Key Takeaways

  • There is a large selection of exchanges, brokers and P2P marketplaces to choose from in Europe.

  • Coinbase, Naga, eToro and Binance are some of the leading crypto providers in Europe.

  • You can fund your account in EUR using methods such as SEPA transfer, ideal/Sofort, credit card and debit cards.

  • You can use several Bitcoin pairs, including BTC/EUR and BTC/ETH.

  • Regulations on taxes vary from country to county. Taxes range from 0% to 50% on profit.

What Options Do I Have When Buying Bitcoin In Europe?

Europe boasts of the leading crypto ecosystem outside the USA. There are many crypto providers where you can buy and sell Bitcoin. Let's differentiate them and see which provides the best avenue to purchase Bitcoin.

Brokers

Brokers offer multiple asset classes, including stocks, EFTs and Forex. Bitcoin is a major, non-traditional alternative asset listed on many brokers. Besides buying and selling, brokers offer other trading instruments involving Bitcoin, such as Bitcoin futures and margin trading. Therefore, brokers are best suited for investors who may want more than crypto, lower fees, and advanced trading instruments.

World-leading brokers you can use to easily sign up and purchase Bitcoin include Naga, Etoro and Plus500. You've different payment options on this platform ranging from SEPA to Paypal.

Global Exchanges

These are online platforms to buy, sell and store Bitcoin. Users have to fund their accounts either in fiat currencies or with cryptocurrencies. This will then be used to exchange for Bitcoin with popular trading pairs, including BTC/EUR, BTC/ETH and BTC/USDT. After purchase, you can decide to send your Bitcoin to a wallet for secure storage or sell it after some time.

These exchanges are reputable and best suited for various trading pairs.

Some of the top global exchanges that operate within Europe include Binance and Coinbase. These provide a myriad of funding options and high liquidity.

Local exchanges

Most exchanges that are native to Europe are still global platforms. Their advantage is that they are Euro first exchanges that will not charge for currency conversion. Good examples include Bitpay and Coindeal.

P2P marketplaces

These are peer to peer crypto platforms that are not controlled by a central authority, unlike global exchanges. They provide a marketplace where buyers and sellers interact, facilitating buying and selling Bitcoin. Others will provide wallets for crypto storage.

Most focus on Bitcoin and Ethereum due to the popularity of these two digital assets. What stands out on P2P marketplaces is the diverse payment options, with some offering country-specific payment solutions. Major P2P platforms in Europe are Paxful and LocalBitcoin.

Bitcoin ATMs (BATMs)

These machines connect to the Bitcoin network and enable you to purchase Bitcoin. They dispense Bitcoin in exchange for fiat currencies. You can find the nearest BATM by using the Coinatmradar website.

Pros and Cons of using Bitcoin

Pros

The most mature cryptocurrency with the longest history and information available for informed decision making
Broad levels of circulation both for investing and using as a currency for purchasing items
Almost all cryptocurrency exchanges and brokers allow users to trade Bitcoin

Cons

Bitcoin is extremely volatile even when compared to other cryptocurrencies
Buying Bitcoin is expensive -- at the time of writing in October, 2021, 1 Bitcoin is equivalent to over $50,000
From a usage sense you still can’t use Bitcoin everywhere

How To Buy Bitcoin In Europe?

Buying Bitcoin in Europe is easy. However, the process will most likely depend on the exchange you select, your payment method and regulations in your country.

This section gives a step by step guideline for buying Bitcoin using a beginner-friendly platform such as eToro.

Step 1: Visit the official eToro website and sign up.
Step 2: Deposit money into your account.
Step 3: Open a trade
Step 4: Review the purchase

Where To Buy Bitcoin In Europe?

Europe has embraced cryptocurrencies; therefore, there are many crypto providers available. We highlight several crypto platforms, their key features, pros and cons. We also compare them to give you the best recommendation and help you start right away.

Coinbase

Coinbase is a leading exchange in Europe by market volume. It is beginner-friendly with a simple and intuitive user interface. The platform supports a wide range of payment and withdrawal options for its European base, including SEPA, Faster payments, and cryptocurrencies. Several Bitcoin trading pairs are available such as BTC/EUR and BTC/USDC.

Key features

  • Intuitive user interface

  • Android and IOS apps

  • Insurance for crypto

  • Staking rewards

  • High liquidity

    Buying Bitcoin with eToro Pros and Cons

Pros

A wide selection of crypto
A respectable number of BTC trading pairs
Ability to deposit fiat currencies via SEPA transfers and ideal/Sofort
Ability to deposit large amounts of EUR
Coinbase Pro for advanced traders

Cons

High trading fees

Binance

Established in 2017, Binance is the world's leading cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume. The platform is available across Europe, offering close to 500 crypto assets, including Bitcoin. Many trading pairs involving Bitcoin are available, including BTC/EUR and BTC/USDT.

Key features

  • Android and IOS mobile trading app

  • A variety of funding options

  • Charting and other trading tools

  • Binance coin (BNB) powers the ecosystem

  • Various trading options and education material

  • Supports multiple crypto wallets

  • Binance VISA cards

Buying Bitcoin with Binance Pros and Cons

Pros

Low fees at 0.1%
Great reputation
High liquidity
Supports over 500 cryptocurrencies such as Shiba Inu and Dogecoin
Supports new crypto and trading pairs quickly
Lower fees when using the native BNB token

Cons

Some processes may not be beginner-friendly
Lengthy verification process
Past regulatory scrutiny

Coinbase vs Binance

These two crypto providers are world leaders in terms of trade volume globally. They have high liquidity, a fantastic array of trading pairs, excellent trading engines, and are reputable.

Differences arise in terms of fees, usability and ecosystem. Binance wins the war on fees with extremely minimal fees. Coinbase takes it when it comes to usability as the platform is rated as the most beginner-friendly. The ecosystem varies as Binance has its own token, which powers the Binance, a Visa card and supports crypto wallets. Coinbase offers a Coinbase card and Coinbase Pro, a platform for advanced traders.

eToro

Etoro is an online brokerage firm that supports multiple asset classes. Apart from buying and selling Bitcoin, you'll have other trading options, such as social copy trading. Here are some of the standout features of this platform.

Key features

  • An IOS and android mobile app

  • Socal copy trading functionality

  • Zero commission trading

  • Intuitive app

  • Excellent customer support

Buying Bitcoin with eToro Pros and Cons

Pros

Low fees
Licensed and regulated in Europe
Charting features
Beginner-friendly
Support for various deposit options, including SEPA

Cons

Limited trading pairs for BTC
A limited number of cryptocurrencies

Naga

Naga is another top multi-asset brokerage unit that operates in Europe. Apart from stocks and EFTs, buyers can purchase cryptos like Bitcoin and Litecoin.

Key features

  • A free crypto wallet

  • Social investing network

  • Copy-trading

  • Android and IOS app

Buying Bitcoin with Naga Pros and Cons

Pros

EU regulated
Easy management of your portfolio
Credit and debit cards available as payment options
Instant transactions and low transaction fees
High liquidity

Cons

Limited BTC trading pairs
Limited funding options

Etoro vs Naga

Both platforms stand out for their copy trading feature. They also provide their users with simple and intuitive user interfaces. Fees are minimal across the board, with eToro offering zero commission. It is simple to open and maintain an account on both platforms, which is a great advantage for beginners.

eToro boasts of more payment options and a more extensive array of cryptocurrencies.

What are the Regulations and Taxes When Buying Bitcoin In Europe?

A standard set of laws is in the offing regarding cryptocurrencies in Europe. However, some member countries like Germany and France have instituted their local laws. In a majority of the countries, exchanges and brokers are expected to comply with AML and CFT regulations. We've highlighted some tax regulations for some of the member countries below.

  • German Bitcoin investors are exempted from capital gain tax if they hold the Bitcoin for less than a year. The invested amount should also be less than less €600.

  • France taxes cryptocurrency as a movable asset similar to stocks and bonds. They are taxed as ordinary income; therefore, investors are liable for capital gains taxes on any profit arising from the sale of their Bitcoin.

Please note that there are conditions to paying taxes. This includes when converting Bitcoin to fiat or when gains from the sale of your Bitcoin exceed €305 in a financial year.

Other Considerations When Buying Bitcoin In Europe

Due to the volatility of Bitcoin prices, consider several factors before you make your investment decision. See below some of the more critical factors:

Volatility

Like every other cryptocurrency, Bitcoin prices fluctuate considerably. For instance, in the last 90 days (from October 2021), there has been a 42% change in prices. This is affected by market sentiment, news, availability, competition, supply and demand. Before purchasing, ensure you do some fundamental analysis to determine price movement.

Competition

Other new cryptocurrencies are being developed by the day. Bitcoin faces competition from other cryptos that provide the same functionality, more privacy and fewer fees. Bitcoin alternatives are Monera and Litecoin.

Security

Whether using a broker or a crypto exchange, ensure that the platform is secure. Security encompasses your details, assets and funds protection.

After signing up, ensure you activate two-factor authentication (2FA) to secure your account further. We also recommend using reputable and regulated crypto platforms. Finally, transfer your Bitcoin to a secure wallet for better protection.

Transactions cannot be transferred

Bitcoin transactions cannot be reversed. Please ensure to enter the correct wallet address before you confirm any transfer.

Regulations and taxes

Confirm the regulations and tax laws before purchasing Bitcoin. Some countries have banned cryptocurrencies while other charge huge taxes, ranging from 0% to 50%.

CountryCrypto Tax
PortugalCrypto considered a tax free activity
SwitzerlandDiffers per canton (26 in total). Zurich is considered tax free for crypto trades
GermanyTax due on capital gains amounts above €600
MaltaCrypto considered 'store of value' - no capital gains tax due
UKPlease see latest government advice on crypto trading

Fees

Use reputable exchanges with minimal fees to ensure you get value for money. Consider also using deposit methods like SEPA, which attract minimal deposit fees.

Reputation

Use reputable platforms with high liquidity, robust trading engines and security. Previously, there have been incidents of security breaches with hackers making away with crypto assets. Other platforms are set up with elaborate bells and whistles, only to scam investors.

Ease of use

Please use our recommendation for platforms that are easy to use, even for beginners. Other factors that influence usability is the ease of deposit and KYC verification. Consider Coinbase or eToro when purchasing Bitcoin.

What Payment Methods Can I Use To Buy Bitcoin In Europe?

Crypto platforms offer multiple payment options. Buyers can deposit the euro or cryptocurrencies. Fiat to crypto exchanges will require you to deposit fiat currencies in exchange for BTC. Here are some of the common payment methods you can expect to find:

Buy Bitcoin in Europe with a Credit card

Some platforms accept credit cards as a funding option. Binance and eToro are examples of places where you can use your Visa and Mastercard cards.

Pros

Fast deposits
Secure
Easy and convenient to use

Cons

Limited adoption
Limits on purchase
High fees
Extra charges may apply
Lack of privacy

Buy Bitcoin in Europe with a Debit card

Visa and Mastercards debit cards are also accepted on most crypto exchanges. Unlike credit cards, debit card users must have money in their accounts. You can use your debit card on eToro and Naga.

Pros

One of the fastest payment types
An easy to use, readily available payment type
3D security feature helps to prevent online fraud

Cons

Purchase limits can impact level of trading
Some banks may prohibit transactions with crypto exchanges
High fees

Buy Bitcoin in Europe with a Bank Transfer

It is a widely adopted mode of payment. You can transfer small and large amounts. SEPA, iDEAL and Sofort are popular bank transfer methods available on crypto platforms that operate in Europe. eToro, Binance and Coinbase accept bank transfers.

Pros

Cheaper fees than other types of payment
Higher transaction limit
Wide adoption with brokers
Easy to set up

Cons

Slower than most payment methods

Buy Bitcoin with E-wallets

Paypal, Skrill and Neteller are digital payment methods available as a funding option for EU residents. Naga and eToro support these e-wallets.

Pros

Easy setting up an account
Easy to use
Fast transactions

Cons

High fees
Limited adoption

Buy Bitcoin in Europe with Cash

It is possible to find Bitcoin vendors who accept cash. Bitcoin ATMs also accept cash Paxful and LocalBitcoins are some of the marketplaces you may find vendors who accept cash.

Pros

Lower fees on P2P marketplaces

Cons

Possibility of getting scammed
Difficult to find vendors
Limited to smaller transactions

How To Store Bitcoin

After purchasing Bitcoin, you need to select a storage option. Binance and Coinbase provide custodial wallets. However, we recommend transferring your Bitcoin out of exchanges. Crypto wallets are the best solution, and they exist in two categories.

Hot wallets

These are online-based software applications that help you store and use cryptocurrencies. You can easily download them online and transfer your Bitcoin. They exist in the form of mobile, web and desktop wallets.

You can easily use hot wallets to transfer and spend your Bitcoin. On the downside, they are susceptible to attacks because they operate online. Examples include Exodus, Mycelium wallet and Bitcoin wallet.

Cold wallets

Unlike hot wallets, cold wallets operate offline. They are small physical USB-shaped devices and will cost you money. Popular examples include Ledger and Trezor wallets.

Final Thoughts on Buying Bitcoin in Europe

Bitcoin is a popular cryptocurrency with substantial market dominance. It attracts a lot of people who seek digital assets as alternative investments. The EU being a leading market for Bitcoin has attracted many exchanges and brokers.

eToro and Coinbase emerge as the frontrunners and Europe's top crypto providers. They provide easy to use applications and a variety of payment options. They cater to beginners and offer solid trading pairs.

FAQs

Do I need to pay tax on profits in Europe?
Can I buy Bitcoin without an ID in Europe?
Danny Maiorca

Danny Maiorca

Danny is a freelance writer specialising in technology and finance. Prior to working for himself, he spent several years working within those sectors in London. Since then, Danny has relocated to Denmark.