indian rupee and bitcoin symbols

Novice guide to buying Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin in India

There’s been a lot of news around bitcoin off late because of it breaching 15000 USD mark. There was a lot of speculation about bitcoin near the 10k mark but now it’s comfortably playing around 17k mark. All this constant news update about it must have made you wonder “how do I get hold of some of it” like it did to me!

So how & where can you buy bitcoin?
There are many websites which offer this service in India, Coinome, Koinex, Zebpay and many more. If you visit one of them, you instantly notice that prices are higher by 5-10% compared to USD market! I had the same confusion and rechecked my USD to INR calculations, but there was no problem there. After browsing through FAQ on Zebpay, I found out that it’s based on supply/demand in that region and Zebpay goes on to say it’s a very common even in the Chinese market and sometimes it also trades in prices lower than USD market as well! What I found over last few months was, the price generally moves in proportions with USD market. For example: if USD market goes up by 10%, so does the Indian market. So we are somewhat fine.

Now you might ask, why don’t I just buy in USD market!? But none of the US exchanges caters to India since it involves KYC verification and ability to take money from Indian banks!

So which exchange should I choose?

There are certain things to consider before you narrow down your selection for an exchange. Transaction fee, volumes, security features (2FA etc). Transaction fees are quite similar on all exchanges, here’s the table comparing that. Next, you need to ensure the exchange is well known and receives a good volume of trades every day so that when you want to buy or sell, it gets filled faster. The third is security, whether they have 2FA, login notification etc. If you are buying BTC for keeping long term, it is best to keep it in your own wallet and not in exchange. That’s another big topic which I will probably cover in a future article. Another thing to consider is exchanges which enable you to trade altcoins if you are interested in them.

Fee Coins
Coinome 0.1% to 0.3% Maker/Taker Model BTC, BCH, LTC
Koinex 0.1% to 0.25% Slabs based on volume BTC, BCH, ETH, XRP, LTC
Coinsecure 0.40% Flat BTC
ZebPay Not Listed BTC
UnoCoin 0.70% Reduced to 0.5% with “Gold Membership” BTC

BTC = Bitcoin, BCH = Bitcoin Cash, ETH = Ether/Etherium, LTC = Litecoin, XRP = Ripple

Once you have made up your choice of exchange, the process is very similar to buying stock of a company in share market. For example: in Coinome we see that current price is at this level and if we want to buy, we just need to type in how many Bitcoins we want to buy and at what price we are willing to buy, once you are done, hit buy and confirm! If there are sellers matching your price or lower, your order gets filled.

Check your wallet to see your Bitcoin balance and voila you are now the owner of Bitcoins!

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