To start investing in cryptocurrency, there are two important things that you need:

1. From Fiat to Crypto

Step 1. Choose an Exchange to Buy Bitcoin

Bitcoin, the king of cryptocurrency, is often the entry point for crypto newbies as well as seasoned traders.

So the first step is to find an exchange that supports your country in which you can turn your fiat cash into Bitcoin.

With a crypto exchange, you can easily exchange your traditional fiat money like USD, MYR and AUD to other virtual currency like Bitcoin and Ether, and vice-versa.

The following are a few main options where you can buy Bitcoin based on your country:

  • USA: Coinbase, Kraken, Bitstamp
  • Malaysia: Luno
  • Singapore:Luno, Coinhako,Coinbase
  • Canada: CoinSmart
  • Australia: Luno, Independent Reserve
  • China: Huobi, OKCoin, BTC China
  • Taiwan: Maicoin
  • India: Bitbns
  • South Africa:Luno
  • UK: Coinbase,CEX
  • Europe:Coinbase, CEX
  • Russia: Coinmama
  • Japan:Coinmama,Kraken
  • South Korea: Bithumb, Korbit, Coinplug

By far, crypto exchange is the easiest way to buy/sell cryptocurrency.

As convenience always comes with a price, you’ll need to pay nominal fees for transacting on the exchange site. Each exchange has a different fee structure.

Step 2: Create an account and start buying

After you’ve decided which exchange you’d like to use, follow the steps below:

  • Go to the official exchange site and create an account with your email ID.
  • Verify your identity (Photo ID, address, phone number etc)
  • Optional: To be more secure, it’s advisable to enable two-factor authentication (2FA)
  • Choose a payment method- using your bank account, credit card or debit card
  • Deposit the amount of fiat cash that you’re going to invest
  • Select the cryptocurrency you’d like to buy. (Bitcoin is probably the first coin that you want to buy)
  • Deposit your fiat cash by using a bank transfer, debit card or credit card.
  • Confirm transaction.

Note: Due to high demand, it can take weeks to get your account approved on an exchange. Even if you’re still unsure about buying, I recommend you create an account now and get it approved first. It’s free and you don’t have to buy any cryptocurrencies. You can buy it anytime you like.

2.From Crypto to Crypto

After you’ve purchased your bitcoins, now let’s see how to buy other cryptocurrencies.
If you don’t know, there are over 2000+ other cryptocurrencies in the market. They’re collectively known as altcoins.
Each altcoin comes with its unique features and has a different usage, technologies, and problems to solve.
But even the top exchange sites like Coinbase only allow you to buy 5 coins.
Here are some of the most popular websites to buy altcoins:

  • CoinSwitch
  • Binance
  • Kucoin

These crypto-to-crypto exchanges are different from the ones I mentioned earlier in this article. This is because they normally don’t accept any fiat cash.
You can only exchange crypto to crypto using these sites.
So you’ll need to buy your bitcoins first on fiat-crypto exchanges like Coinbase and send them to crypto-to-crypto exchange like CoinSwitch to buy altcoins.

Among these, I recommend using CoinSwitch. It’s the most beginner-friendly in which you can instantly exchange Bitcoin with the coins you want without dealing with complicated trading charts.

Unlike most crypto-to-crypto exchanges, CoinSwitch allows you to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies directly with a credit card, without the need of creating an account on any exchange.
They have a huge selection of Altcoins somewhere in the region of 400 with more than 45,000 pairs to choose from.
Even better, you can earn $5 when you complete a transaction of $100 on CoinSwitch

3.Get a wallet to store cryptocurrency

Next, you need to move all crypto assets that you’ve bought to a secure wallet.
COMMON MISTAKE 1: Buying cryptocurrency before getting a wallet.
To store your cryptocurrency, you need a wallet.
The idea is to first set up your cryptocurrency wallet and have it ready to store the coins that you’re going to purchase.
There is a dizzying array of wallet options out there.
Here are the two main types of crypto wallets
Software and mobile wallets

This type of wallet is usually available free of charge. As they‘re constantly connected to the Internet, they’re highly susceptible to all sorts of hacks, malware, scams, or phishing attacks.
Hardware wallets

This is, by far, the most secure way of keeping your Bitcoin and altcoins. For long-term Holding, I recommend using hardware wallets like Ledger and Trezor.
COMMON MISTAKE 2: Store your Bitcoin and altcoins on an exchange wallet for long term
Even some experienced traders are making this mistake by keeping crypto investments using an exchange wallet.
Many popular exchanges such as Coinbase and Binance offer a free built-in wallet, which you can use to keep your coins.
However, you should only deposit the amount needed for the purchase and immediately transfer your coins to your wallet once the transaction is complete.
The point is don’t rely on exchange as your wallet to HODL your crypto assets.
Keeping your Bitcoin on an exchange is as if you do not own the Bitcoin.
Since virtual currencies don’t have a physical form, you don’t store your cryptocurrency in a regular wallet or even in a bank.
Therefore, you need to choose the right wallet in which you have 100% control of the digital currencies.
You can do this by making sure that you have full ownership of the private key.
Put simply, your money is on the network, and anyone who has access to the private key will own the Bitcoin.

In general, to buy your first Bitcoin:

  • Find a Bitcoin exchange
  • Exchange your local currency like USD, EUR to bitcoins
  • Move your bitcoins to a secure Bitcoin wallet

To buy altcoins:

  • Find a crypto-to-crypto exchange
  • Exchange bitcoins to other cryptocurrencies like Litecoin, Dogecoin and Monero
  • Move your altcoins to a secure crypto wallet

Read more: Types of Cryptocurrency Wallets: Pros and Cons

See ya in the next article !

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