If you’re ready to start your cryptocurrency journey, you’ll need to sign up with an exchange. Choosing the right cryptocurrency exchange will greatly simplify the process of buying and selling Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, while also minimizing the risk of getting burned when starting out with cryptocurrency trading. Thankfully, there are many great options to choose, including those we’ll cover in this guide to the top 5 cryptocurrency exchanges.

Guide to the Top 5 Cryptocurrency Exchanges

So with that in mind, here is our pick of the best cryptocurrency exchanges, complete with their advantages and disadvantages.

Coinbase

Coinbase is probably the first name you’ll come across when searching for the best cryptocurrency exchange. Thanks to an easy and straightforward approach to buying and selling digital currency, Coinbase quickly became the most well-known, and perhaps most trusted, cryptocurrency exchange. Support for fiat currencies gives almost everyone the ability to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with their credit or debit cards.

The ability to manage your portfolio from one place, set up automated recurring buys for investing in cryptocurrency slowly, and enhanced account security, make Coinbase easy to recommend. This especially applies to those who’re new to Bitcoin trading platforms and buying other cryptocurrencies. The Coinbase mobile app is pretty good too!

The only real downside of Coinbase is its lack of tools and features for serious day traders. Read the full Coinbase review.

Binance

Binance boasts low transaction fees that make it an attractive option to those on a budget, or anyone looking to maximize their cryptocurrency trading gains. After a surge in popularity — of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general – Binance has been limiting new user registrations from time to time. However, it’s definitely worth trying to sign up and see what the current status is.

One clear disadvantage of Binance, especially compared to Coinbase, is the lack of support for fiat currencies. Therefore, you’ll already need some form of digital currency to start your cryptocurrency trading adventure with Binance. Not a big deal; but something for beginners to keep in mind.

The user-friendly mobile apps for both Android and iOS make this one of the best Bitcoin exchanges for cryptocurrency trading on the go.

Kraken

Kraken is another well-established option, launching in 2011. Being headquartered in San Francisco could also help reassure those that are still a bit skeptical about Bitcoin trading platforms and cryptocurrency market trading in general.

Support for fiat currencies definitely earns Kraken a point in the pros columns. However, the fact that the user interface is widely considered to be unintuitive makes this popular cryptocurrency exchange less appealing to those who are new to trading Ethereum and other coins.

CEX.IO

Considered by some to be one of the most serious cryptocurrency and Bitcoin trading platforms, CEX.IO could be a good option for those who plan to stay the course with digital currencies and eventually get into higher volume trading.

Getting started is easy, thanks to a wide range of purchasing options. However, some have found the verification rules to be on the strict side, at least compared to other top cryptocurrency exchanges.

The favorable exchange rates, user-friendly dashboard, and the near global coverage all help CEX.IO earn its place in this guide to the top 5 cryptocurrency exchanges.

Bitsquare

Bitsquare is a slightly different option, in that it’s a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency trading platform. As part of this approach, Bitsquare describes itself as a “Decentralized Autonomous Organization” (DAO) and ownership is distributed depending on a user’s level of participation in the Bitsquare project.

Getting started is very straightforward, with little requirement for proof of identity, or submission of personal information. You will need to download the free software, though, but after that, you should be good to go.

If you’re a fan of the open source movement, then Bitsquare might be the best cryptocurrency exchange for you.

Final Thoughts

As you’re probably aware, there are countless cryptocurrency exchanges out there.

While the major players, like Coinbase and Binance, are the obvious choices, some of the other options, including those in this cryptocurrency exchange comparison, truly make an effort to differentiate themselves from the competition, rather than simply trying to cash in on the crypto trend with an inferior project.

Therefore, whether you’re after a safe pair of hands for your cryptocurrency, or you want to try out one of the newer up-and-comers, there’s an exchange for you.

Which cryptocurrency exchange will you choose?

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