BitStamp Exchange Review
BitStamp Cryptocurrency Review
Trust Score: 9/10
Bitstamp was first launched in 2011 in August and is owned by Bitstamp Ltd which is a company based in the UK. This makes it one of the oldest cryptocurrency exchanges online and one that looks like it will be around for the foreseeable future.
Not only is it one of the oldest but it is one of the largest as well. Bitstamp is actually recognised as being the sixth largest cryptocurrency exchange based purely on trade volume. This guarantees that there will be plenty of action on the exchange.
This exchange can also lay claim to being fully regulated and licensed, the very first one to be so in Europe in actual fact.
Other strengths of BitStamp are its top-notch security (admittedly implemented after being hacked in 2015), an impressive well-built interface, accepting credit cards, an excellent app and being available to anyone around the world that can verify their identity.
Now that we have got you excited about what is on offer from this exchange, you will want to learn more by reading our in-depth review.
For those of you that love nothing more than being able to trade at cryptocurrency exchanges via your mobile devices, you are going to be delighted to hear that BitStamp provides an app for all users of Android and iOS.
Downloadable for the respective app stores, this app will give traders the ability to perform most of the functions that they could do on the web browser version of their exchange.
- Deposit and withdraw
- Perform trades
- Receive real-time market data
First impressions of the BitStamp interface, which is web-based by the way, is that it looks very solid indeed.
A lot of the focus is definitely on the charting and the order book that it provides and you can just tell that whoever designed it, has plenty of trading experience. This is due to little such as the bid and ask prices being so close together. You would be surprised how many exchanges do not do this and it just makes the whole process of trading far less efficient.
Overall, this is definitely one of the better interfaces that we have used even if it might not quite have as much functionality as some others.
There are just four cryptocurrencies on Bitstamp and these can be traded in eleven different trading pairs that are primarily around the USD, EUR and BTC.
Registering at BitStamp
We found the registering process to be very easy indeed, though to be fair, it is usually a piece of cake on most other exchanges as well. You will need to fill in the following:
- Email address
- Country of Origin
You will then need to verify your email address through an email they send you and that is it, you are good to log in to your new account.
As you might expect, if you ever want to be able to withdraw anything from BitStamp, you are going to have to get your account verified first. This is even the case if you just want to trade cryptocurrencies as well. This is probably down to being fully licensed and regulated.
So once you have created an account, you might as well just go and get the verification done and out of the way before you deposit funds on to the exchange. Save yourself the hassle if for some reason you are turned down – which you shouldn’t be if you have the appropriate ID and documents.
What you will need is:
- Government-issued ID
- Bank statement or recent utility bill with your address on it
Verifications can take a long time, unfortunately. They do not give a timeframe on their website but having looked at a number of forums, it seems that it could take up to a month to get verified. This might just be a few rare cases but with such a large and popular exchange, they could just be under a huge workload.
Funding Your Account
While you can still put funds into your unverified account and start trading, as mentioned above, we recommend that you wait until you are verified. If you do not get verified for whatever reason, you are not going to be able to get your funds back off the exchange, so it justs pays to be patient and wait for verification.
Once you do get that verification or you have just ignored out advice, you can load your account with funds quite easily. Just click ‘deposit’ on the top of the screen and you then just choose the amount and type of funds you wish to add and your preferred payment method.
Each payment method will have its own processing time and fees which you can find more information on later.
Accepted Payment Methods
Bitstamp primarily works around the USD and EUR with regards to the fiat currencies that it supports. This will please those that are looking to buy their first cryptocurrencies as fiat will have to be involved at some point. Those based in Europe will have the best selection of payment methods as they can use bank transfers.
- Wire transfers
- Credit/debit cards
Each of these payment methods will have their own fees attached to them and also processing times. Wire transfers will be the cheapest but take the longest time to complete while credit cards will be instant but cost the most in fees.
A cryptocurrency exchange has to make some money or it would be pointless to provide the exchange in the first place, this is why you should expect to see some fees on any transactions that you make at BitStamp.
All being told, the fees that BitStamp does charge its users all very competitive and actually quite low compared to many other exchanges.
- Depositing Fees
These fees will vary depending on the type of payment method used:
- Sepa – Free
- Credit Card – 5%
- International Wire – 0.05%
- Cryptocurrencies – Free
These are pretty standard and more than competitive compared to other large cryptocurrency exchanges.
- Withdrawal Fees
Again, the fees involved with withdrawals will depend on the type of payment method being used:
- Sepa – 0.90 EUR
- Debit Card – $10 for transfers up to $1,000, 2% on all transfers above that
- International Wire – 0.09%
- Cryptocurrencies – Free
Again, nothing out of the ordinary with these fees and they are actually a lot cheaper than many other exchanges.
- Trading Fees
Bitstamp has a fee schedule that determines how much of a fee that traders will be charged on each transaction. This schedule is based on how much trade volume a user has completed across the previous 30-days.
Users will start with a flat fee of 0.25% of every trade and the first milestone is that of $20,000 in trade volume that will lower fees to 0.24%. To achieve the lowest fee of 0.10%, a trader would have to have had a trading volume of more than $20 million in the previous 30-days. Check out their fee schedule for more information.
At BitStamp, there are a number of limits that will be applied to transactions and trading on their exchange. These are as follows:
We could not find any information regarding limits when making a deposit on BitStamp. We assume this means that there are none.
Withdrawing via SEPA requires a minimum withdrawal of $10 while wire transfers have a minimum withdrawal of the equivalent of $50.
- Trading Limits
BitStamp requires that the minimum trade on their exchange is that of the equivalent of $5.
Bitstamp claims that their exchange is available worldwide and that anyone that can use one of the payment methods to get funds into their Bitstamp wallets. This is great news and is probably why this is one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges online in terms of trade volume and active users.
- Available Worldwide
- No Restrictions
The site is also available in multiple languages with those being the following:
Customer support, in general, is pretty poor when it comes to cryptocurrency exchanges with there usually only being email support and an F.A.Q page to use for your issues. Bitstamp does a little better as it has both of those but also a UK-based telephone that can be used to contact them.
If trying to contact them via email, there are usually waiting times of between 24 and 72 hours which is not so good at the higher end of that scale. We would expect an exchange to be a bit more responsive than that and guarantee replies within 24 hours. However, that is unlikely to happen at any exchange until formal regulations are brought in.
The F.A.Q page is actually quite informative and it does answer a lot of questions that many users might have.
- Email and telephone support
- AQ page
Also, they are very active on Twitter, so if you wanted to be kept informed of the latest news and information from BitStamp, you can always follow their account there.
BitStamp is owned by BitStamp Ltd in the UK and they have offices in London, New York and Luxembourg. Probably the most important and appealing aspect of BitStamp is that it was the first cryptocurrency exchange in Europe to become fully licensed and therefore regulated.
The Luxembourg Financial Industry Supervisory Commission are the regulators and BitStamp are required to adhere to the regulations that they set out. This includes annual audits
98% of digital funds on BitStamp are stored offline. They also agree to be subjected to a yearly audit which is great news for would-be traders that are worried about whether they can trust an exchange.
Back in 2015, BitStamp was famously hacked but in a way, that was a bit of a blessing as it has made them focus far heavier on security. They are now regarded as one of the most secure exchanges due to the big changes that they made.
This includes now storing 98% of their user’s currencies in cold storage with the remaining being the only amount on the exchange at any time. They also make two-factor authentication available to their traders and perform to KYC and AML standards.
- Fully licensed and regulated
- KYC and AML standards met
- Two-factor authentication
If you are looking for a cryptocurrency exchange that you can trust, we feel that BitStamp will be one that you will like. Not only is it based in the UK, it is also fully regulated and licensed. Not many can lay claim to that and we are not even sure that many would even like to be able to. BitStamp, on the other hand, is proud of the fact that they conform to certain regulations.
The fees at BitStamp will not exactly be appealing but they are far from the most expensive out there and you might consider them worth it for the security, the quality of their interface, a handy app and the ability to fund your account via credit card.
The trading options are a bit lacking as there are no advanced trades available here but those that it does offer, it offers them very well using a solid interface and a reliable exchange. This also makes it a lot more beginner-friendly which is always a good way to get more people involved in the world of crypto.
We rate this exchange highly and suggest that you take a look at the very least.