top crypto exchanges canada

The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges in Canada

In 2017, you might have first heard about Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies, as Bitcoin broke news worldwide throughout the year, peaking at $19,783.06 in December and making many early investors obscenely rich. Some people wrote off Bitcoin as a bubble that was bound to break (myself included, admittedly)Others realized the long-term potential of cryptocurrenciesNow in 2021, Bitcoin has hit a peak over four times as high as it was in 2017, and the second biggest cryptocurrency Ethereum, as of writing, is trading at new peaks every day. Many more people are looking into crypto as a new alternative to investing due to these recent successes, as it seems cryptocurrencies are becoming more and more mainstream.   

While this world of cryptocurrency may seem daunting, you are already taking the most important step: learning about the world of crypto is intrinsically important to invest, let alone making money, through trading cryptocurrency. The next step is finding a cryptocurrency exchange so you can start trading.  

Here are our favourite top-rated crypto exchanges in Canada:

DISCLAIMER: The table below lists our picks for both the top exchanges and the best cryptocurrency brokers in Canada. Brands are not listed in any particular order.  

Crypto exchange comparison table

Exchange or Broker Fiat Currencies Cryptocurrencies Trading Fees Links
1 CAD Only BitCoin and Ethereum No fees (i) View Details

Get a $10 sign-up bonus!

1 Only Crypto  Over 150 >0.1% View Details
1 CAD 7 >0.2% for Pro Trade, 0.2% for Express Trade View Details
1 USD Over 190 >0.2% View Details
1 CAD 11 0.2% View Details
1 USD 50 0.5%, plus a variable fee View Details
 

1

CAD 11 0.2% for single trade, 0.4% for double trade View Details
1 USD & CAD 10 0.2% for single trade, 0.4% for double trade View Details
 

1

7, including CAD, USD and EUR 55 >0.26% View Details
1 CAD, USD & EUR 10 ~6% View Details
1 CAD Only BitCoin >7.75% View Details
1 CAD 9 No fees (i) View Details
1 CAD 6 No fees (i) View Details

 

What is a crypto exchange?

Cryptocurrency exchanges are where people buy, sell and trade cryptocurrencies. While some brick-and-mortar crypto exchanges exist, it is far more common for people to trade cryptocurrencies online. There are various kinds of crypto exchanges out therebut they can typically split into a few categories, but we will focus on the difference between two of the most common types of crypto exchanges we encountered in our research: cryptocurrency brokers and crypto trading platforms.  

A cryptocurrency broker enables customers to buy and sell crypto, where the broker can set the price and usually earns money through the spread, or a difference between the price they sell crypto for and the price they buy crypto atCrypto brokers are great places for new users to acquire crypto, as they are simple to use and offer limited buying options.  

Other crypto exchanges allow for users to trade amongst themselves. Sometimes referred to as cryptocurrency trading platforms, or simply just “crypto exchanges,” these are the platforms where peer-to-peer trading happens, as users trade different cryptocurrencies among each other, or trade crypto for fiat currencies. Cryptocurrency exchanges are where seasoned investors try to make gains through price fluctuation and speculation, buying currencies if they think their value will go up and selling currencies if they think the value will go down.  Cryptocurrency exchanges that allow this kind of peer-to-peer trading often charge fees on trading cryptos, so understanding what type of fee schedule a cryptocurrency trading platform has in place is important if you are going to try to earn money trading crypto.  

How to choose a crypto exchange

There are many cryptocurrency exchanges available for Canadians, so picking the one that is right for you might take you a chunk of time. With so many cryptocurrency exchanges all looking for your business, there are several different things you should think about when choosing a crypto exchangeHere are some aspects of different crypto exchanges.  

  • Cryptocurrencies AvailableThere are more cryptocurrencies than there are fiat currencies available. While all cryptocurrency exchanges should carry bitcoin, and almost all will carry Ethereumonly certain exchanges will have smaller currencies. Many people might not need obscure coins, but some like trading obscure coins in case one catches on.  
  • Fees: Fees are essentially how the currency exchange is going to make its money, but that does not mean you should settle on high fees. Fees are typically paid on either withdrawal and deposit of fiat currencies, as well as purchases and exchanges of crypto as well. Understanding an exchange’s fee schedule is an important way to make the most out of your cryptocurrency. 
  • Security: We recommend that you do not store your cryptocurrency with an exchange, and instead acquire an offline cold wallet that can keep your crypto safe from hackers. However, security should be a big proponent of picking a crypto exchange, as there are many horror stories of people getting hacked, phished or scammed out of their crypto from previously trusted crypto exchanges.  
  • Speed: If you trade a lot or want to be able to cash in when you need to, you are going to want to have an expectation of when you can see your converted crypto. Knowing what processes of withdrawal are available and how long they can take is important when choosing a crypto exchangeas well as knowing how long it will be before your recent bitcoin will be in your possession.  
  • Type of ExchangeAs explained above, some exchanges are brokerage orientated, finding you crypto to buy, some sell their own crypto, and others still offer users the opportunity to trade with each other. Knowing what kind of service crypto exchanges offer will be important when choosing the right one for you. Some users might find a crypto broker to buy bitcoin cheaply and quickly, before moving that bitcoin to a trading platform to trade amongst other users.  

Shakepay

  • Fiat-Currencies: CAD  
  • Cryptocurrencies: BTC and Ether only  

Shakepay is more an app than a full-fledged cryptocurrency exchange, but Shakepay is still one of the fastest and easiest ways to purchase Bitcoin and Ethereum in Canada. Users have raved about the user-friendliness of the interface and the quickness in which users have received their crypto.   

With the Shakepay app, users can buy and sell Bitcoin and Ethereum and pay their friends. Shakepay allows customers to purchase its currencies by Interac e-Transfer, Wire transfer, or by using the cryptos it offers, all without fees. Users can see e-transfers and their crypto orders come in minutes. Users tend to utilize Shakepay to buy bitcoin quickly, and then trade their bitcoin on another exchange, like Kraken or Binance 

Most of Shakepay’s digital currencies are held at Shakepay in cold storage wallets, but just in case, Shakepay has insurance policies on the digital currencies held, meaning you can have piece of mind with your investments. With 2-factor authentication, encrypted transit, and email confirmations on withdrawals, utilizing the Shakepay app should be safe, however, we still encourage you to store your crypto yourself off-line.  

Pros
  • Quick and easy option for buying Bitcoin or Ethereum.
  • No fees.
  • Get a $10 bonus when you sign up and trade a minimum of $100.
Cons
  • Limited amounts of cryptocurrencies available. 

Binance

  • Currency: Only Crypto
  • Cryptocurrencies: Over 150, including 

Binance is by far one of the most expansive crypto currency exchanges in the world – in terms of currencies offered and people supported. With over 150 cryptocurrencies being traded in over 42 different countries, Binance is a global phenomenon. Whether you are trading Bitcoin or smaller cryptos most have never heard of, Binance is a favourite among investors worldwide.  

Binance has its own crypto, the Binance token (BNB), which can be spent on trading fees and may make you eligible for a 25% discount on trading fees. Yet, Binance’s trading fees are affordable without, with trading fees no higher than 0.1%. While we could not find out what Binance’s fees on deposits and withdrawals (we are still shopping around before we find the Crypto exchange right for us), Binance supports funding by Cash app, Bank deposits, Credit and of course by using a cryptocurrency.  

Binance is a global giant in the world of crypto, so it might be expected that Binance might be a target for cyber-attacks. In 2019, the platform suffered a major hack, which saw the company have $40 million in cryptocurrencies were stolen. However, Binance keeps its users safe with SAFU – the Secure Asset Fund for Users – a fund where Binance puts a portion of its proceeds it makes from fees that can compensate users for stolen funds in case of an attack.  

Binance is a favourite for those experienced users, but due to its complexity is not recommended for inexperienced users. Navigating all the pages and numbers might be daunting for new traders, so we recommend this exchange for those with more experience trading crypto. 

Pros
  • The world’s biggest crypto trading platform.  
  • Over 150 crypto available to trade online. 
Cons
  • Complex layout – not recommended for beginners.

Bitbuy Exchange

  • Currency: CAD 
  • Cryptocurrencies: 7 

Bitbuy Exchange is a crypto exchange that has many Canadian crypto enthusiasts buzzing.  If you want to trade on the service that has been called “the best crypto exchange in Canada,” then Bitbuy should be your choice. Bitbuy is popular for a platform that can appeal to both newcomers and veterans of trading crypto with their low trading fees.  

Bitbuy offers seven Cryptocurrencies for trade, including all of the most popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Investors can deposit and withdrawal their cryptocurrency of choice through Interac e-Transfer and Bank Wire, which carries an average fee of 1.5% (the exception is for deposits by Bank Wire, which only takes a 0.5% fee). For trading on the platform, Bitbuy offers two options: Express Trade, so you can trade quickly and easily, or Pro Trade, a Maker/Taker platform that increases the complexity of trading to improve the liquidity of the crypto while also earning traders more on their trades.  

Bitbuy secures 95% of their cryptocurrencies in offline cold storage, with 2FA on every transaction. Just in case, Bitbuy is insured by Knox Custody, in the case of any cyber attacks against the exchange. 

And if you are ever stuck with decisions or do not understand something, Bitbuy’s customer support team is reliable and friendly, and you can call toll-free for help. 

Overall, we think Bitbuy is a great Crypto exchange for newcomers and experienced traders alike.  

Pros
  • Low fees.
  • Express and Pro trade features provide users many ways of trading crypto.
Cons
  • No credit or debit funding options yet.

BitTrex Exchange

  • Currencies: USD  
  • Cryptocurrencies: Over 190  

BitTrex Exchange is one of the exchanges on this list with the biggest list of cryptocurrencies available, with upwards of 190 coins in one exchange. If you are looking to delving deep into the crypto scene and are trading little-known coins before they potentially catch on, this is the cryptocurrency for you.  

While BitTrex offers many cryptos for sale, we suggest new crypto investors look to different exchanges, since investing in obscure crypto currency is a high-risk endeavour. Newer investors will most likely see more benefit picking a more beginner-friendly crypto exchange that offers fewer types of crypto for trade.  

BitTrex does not take deposit feeswith certain exceptions when trading crypto, and takes a small fee on withdrawals. For most people, Trading fees will cost 0.2%, but due to BitTrex’s fee schedule, users who trade over 50,000 USD in a 30-day period will get better fees the more they trade. This stimulates the amount of trading going on the website but will rarely impact individual people significantly due to the quantity of money being traded.   

Since it is recommended not to store coins with a foreign exchangeCanadians should avoid leaving cryptocurrency on this exchange, and instead look to offline cold wallets. However, you can trust Bittrex to be a safe place to trade on, with two-factor authentication and IP and Crypt address whitelisting ensuring your crypto is in your control.  But unless you want to spend lots of time researching obscure crypto coins to see if they are smart financial decisions, we suggest you look elsewhere.  

Pros
  • One of the highest number of cryptocurrencies available.
  • Fees decrease the more money you trade.  
Cons
  • The exchange is only in USD.  

Coinbase Exchange

  • Fiat Currency: USD  
  • Cryptocurrencies: 50 

Coinbase Exchange is an American currency exchange that is available for Canadians. While Coinbase is now one of the biggest crypto exchanges in the world, there are not many reasons for Canadians to pick Coinbase, due to a combination of factors that do not make this an optimal exchange. 

First off, Coinbase has limited options for funding, as payment methods are limited to PayPal and debit, which the latter requires a 4% fee. Cryptocurrency purchases and sales have a base fee of 0.5%, but often charge a Coinbase Fee that is whichever is the greater sum of a flat fee or a variable percentage fee, based on a few different aspects. However, Coinbase does have an opportunity for users to learn about certain Crypto and earn small amounts of that Crypto to try it out. Still, for what you get with Coinbase, their fees are too high for them to be a solid option for Canadians 

While you should avoid storing your crypto with an exchange, you should definitely avoid storing crypto in Coinbase. Since it is a foreign exchange, accessing your money can be difficult and take a long time. Additionally, Coinbase has had a history of errors or bugs that have put user’s crypto at risk.   

While we would like to imagine Coinbase has improved their systems for a better user experience, we are not sure if their options for Canadians make it a worthwhile investing tool for those up north.  

Pros
  • One of the most popular currency exchanges worldwide. 
Cons
  • High fees.  
  • Limited funding options for Canadians.  

Coinberry Exchange

  • Currency: CAD 
  • Crypto: 6  

Coinberry is a Canadian cryptocurrency brokerage that is an affordable option for Canadians shopping for mainstream cryptocurrencies. Utilizing a broker model, users can enjoy transparency and cheap prices on Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and a few other more mainstream coins.  

Users can enjoy no fees on deposits or withdrawals using CAD with Coinberryas well as no fees on crypto deposits. However, users can get hit with the fees in crypto withdrawals, with the current rate (as of writing) costs users around $40 worth of bitcoin on a Bitcoin withdrawal, with each currency having its own rate. While this seems like a lot, it makes sense as Coinberry needs a way for them to make money themselves. Users can fund and withdraw using Interac and Wire Transfer, with standard minimum and maximum amounts required for the activity (e-Transfers provide low minimums but max out at $10,000, Wire has a minimum of $10,000.)

Coinberry offers Coinberry Pay, a Bitcoin payment processing solution for businesses and individuals that can automatically convert Cryptocurrencies into CAD and transfer them into your bank account.  

Coinberry is insured, FINTRAC registered and PIPEDA compliant, meaning investing with Coinberry should be a safe endeavour, however, you should still keep your coins outside of Coinberry in an offline wallet. Overall, we think Coinberry is a solid option for Canadians to invest in crypto 

Pros
  • No fees on deposits and withdrawals using CAD.  
  • Coinberry Pay offers payment solutions for Crypto transactions.  
Cons
  • Keep an eye on the withdrawal fees of the crypto that you trade. 

Coinmama

  • Fiat Currencies: CAD, USD and EUR 
  • Cryptocurrencies: 10  

CoinMama has been kicking around for a long time in the Crypto world – founded in 2013. CoinMama is available in 188+ countries, making it one of the biggest ranging crypto exchanges in the world. However, this does not make CoinMama one of the best options for Canadians to trade cryptocurrency, and in fact. 

CoinMama follows the brokerage model of cryptocurrency exchanges, as it only sells crypto from its own inventory. While these crypto exchanges can be very helpful for users to acquire crypto to trade on other P2P exchanges, CoinMama does not offer the prices that would entice people interested in this type of trade. CoinMama allows for credit, debit and bank wire transfers to buy bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. However, Coinmama offers higher fees than other exchanges on this list – commission fees ranging from 3.90% on buying cryptocurrency and 0.9% for selling crypto. Additionally, credit and debit transfers are charged with a 5% momentum fee. These fees are significantly higher than other fees for similar companies, that sell their own bitcoin to individuals to invest in.  

Coinmama offers Bitcoin all over the world in many currencies, which is useful for many worldwide. But as Canadians gain access to new exchanges, Canadians can save money buying Bitcoin by shopping elsewhere.  

Pros
  • Offers a wide range of cryptos that you can buy crypto almost everywhere in the world.  
Cons
  • High fees.   

Coinsmart Exchange

  • Fiat Currency: CAD
  • Cryptocurrencies: 11

Coinsmart is a great exchange for Canadians new to the crypto scene. While some Crypto exchanges are covered top to bottom with number after number, Coinsmart has a friendly, easy-to-understand layout and resources available to new investors.

You can buy eleven different cryptocurrencies, in several different ways with the Canadian Dollar. Coinsmart has competitive fees for funding, including no fees with Bank Wire, Bank Draft, and Interact e-Transfers over $2000, but under will net you a 1.5%. For those looking to buy crypto on credit, that will cost you a little more with a fee of 6%. Withdrawals have a flat fee of 1%, however, processing these transactions may take up to 5 business days.

When Trading with Coinsmart, keep in mind that each crypto withdrawal has its own fees listed in the crypto, not the Fiat currency, so it is important to keep track of the current rate of the currency you plan to trade. For trading P2P with users on Coinsmart’s Exchange, fees are 0.2% for trades between CAD and a crypto and 0.4% for trades between crypto.

Users new to crypto will really love the simple, intuitive website, and 24/7 SmartSupport. CoinSmart’s GetSmart Hub is another tool that can help newcomers to the financial scene, providing learning tools and resources about the different cryptocurrencies available.

Pros
  • Simple, easy-to-understand website. 
  • Learning resources available and helpful SmartSupport 
  • Generally low fees for deposits, withdrawals and trading.  
Cons
  • Currency withdrawal rate is in the crypto, so ensure you know what the withdrawal fee is going to be.  

Coinsquare

  • Fiat Currency: CAD and USD
  • Crypto: 10

Coinsquare is an American cryptocurrency exchange that offers Canadians a solid place to exchange currencies with others. Coinsquare is a great resource for its easy explanations of crypto currencies, as well as features that can attract new or long-term crypto investors.

Trading on Coinsquare has different options, as you can trade on the Bit Markets with Maker and Taker fees (0.1% and 0.2%), to ensure the liquidity of the coins, and promote trade. Coinsquare’s QuickTrade feature instantly makes trades between any two currencies, making trading on the fly possible, with fees of approximately 0.4% for trades on non-BTC currencies. For funding, users can buy crypto from Coinsquare through Interac and Wire transfer for no fees, but for similar withdrawal options, Coinsquare charges 2% fees. No trading minimums mean anyone can start trading crypto today.

Users with over $25,000 invested in digital currency will be enrolled into Coinsquare’s Wealth service, which offers lower fees and support to your own Account director who can provide you important tips for growing your crypto portfolio.

Coinsquare’s trading platform is SSL and 24A enabled, and with over 95% of their digital currencies always being in offline cold storage, you can relax knowing your investments are secure. Overall, Coinsquare provides a little for every type of investor.

Pros
  • Low fees.
  • Those that invest lots gain access to Coinsquare Wealth.
  • No trading minimums.
Cons
  • Overall, there is not much we do not like about Coinsquare.

Kraken Exchange

  • Fiat currencies: USD, EUR, CAD, JPY, GBP, CHF, AUD  
  • Cryptocurrencies: Over 55 

Kraken is a US-based exchange that has been around for a relatively long time in the world of crypto, founded in 2011. Kraken sees a lot of trade on a daily basis, making it an excellent place for those looking to trade regularly.  

Buying crypto through Kraken has no fees attached only if you purchase crypto with your account balance. However, payment with card will cost you upwards of 3.75% in fees. However, users that already have crypto can use it to fund their accounts. Additionally, funding your account with CAD by Wire transfer, or services like Etana Custody or POSconnect Interfin transfer, is free.  

Like other crypto trading platforms, Kraken uses a variable Maker/Taker fee schedule to increase liquidity of the cryptocurrencies offered. The fee schedule varies by how much money you have traded in a 30-day period, with a standard 0.1% difference between Taker and Maker fees. With over 5different coins for trade on Kraken, there are plenty of opportunities to trade crypto. 

Kraken is registered as a Money Services Business with FINTRAC in Canada and is overall secure. To date, Kraken has never been hacked. Despite Kraken’s security, keeping your crypto in foreign exchange can cause issues, and we generally recommend keeping your crypto offline yourself with a personalized cold wallet.  

Pros
  • Lots of regular traffic.
  • Many Fiat and crypto currencies are supported.
  • Low trading fees.
Cons
  • No Interac e-Transfer options for funding.

MyBTC Exchange

  • Fiat Currency: CAD 
  • Cryptocurrency: Only Bitcoin  

MyBTC.ca is a Canadian bitcoin brokerage exchange site that offers Canadians fast and versatile ways to purchase bitcoin. With MyBTC, you can get BitCoin in moments by e-Transfer, Interac Online, Visa, Mastercard, Bank Wire, Flexepin vouchers, Debit Card and even cash, granted needing to go to Canada Post for the last two.  

Unfortunately, MyBTC has significant fees. If you are buying bitcoin by bank wire with a $10,000 minimum, your fees are to the tune of 4.75%, and most other methods of transaction are at 7.75%. Credit card transactions are a huge 9.75% too. We like the idea of a Canadian Crypto Exchange that offers a variety of ways to buy bitcoin quickly, we just wish MyBTC.ca offered a more competitive rate.  

Pros
  • Quick and easy way to buy Bitcoin.  
  • Many different options for buying Bitcoin.  
Cons
  • High fees. 
  • Only Bitcoin available.  

NDAX Exchange

  • Trading fees: 0.2% 
  • Currency: CAD 
  • Cryptocurrencies: 10  

NDAX is a Calgary-based crypto exchange that aims to simplify the trading of Cryptocurrency. With a straightforward website and no hidden fees, NDAX Exchange is a great exchange for Canadians looking to get into the Crypto trading game.  

Investors can buy Bitcoin through deposits including Interac e-Transfer, wire transfer and bank drafts, but withdrawals into your own personal wallet or into fiat currency (also available through wire transfer and bank) are at a flat $25 rate. Buying and selling crypto on NDAX’s exchange is at a low 0.2% fee, which is on the lower end of fees. NDAX offers 10 cryptocurrencies available to buy and sell, including most of the major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ether and Litecoin.  

Users like that NDAX is a Canadian crypto trading platform that works as fast. NDAX adheres to Canada’s highest security standards, and is registered with FINTRAC, so you can feel secure investing with NDAX. 

Pros
  • No fees on deposits.
  • Low trading fees – at 0.2%.  
Cons
  • Flat $25 dollar fee on withdrawals is worth it for big-time investors but not as good for smaller traders. 

Newton Exchange

  • Fiat Currencies: CAD
  • Cryptocurrencies: 9  

Newton Exchange is a Canadian crypto broker that has become many Canadian’s favourite way to buy Bitcoin. Canadians can buy 9 different cryptos with CAD cheaply and quickly with Newton.  

Newton is a direct trading currency brokerageso you will be exchanging fiat and crypto with Newton directlyNewton does not require any fees for deposits and withdrawals, instead making money through the “spread,” or the gap between the price they sell bitcoin at and the price they buy bitcoin at. Users can add & withdraw finds easily online through Interac e-Transfers, as well as through wire transfers or the ability to connect your bank account to your Newton account for seamless exchange from one account to another. All without fees too. The only downside to trading on Newton is a $500 daily trading  limit on new users.  

Newton has a mobile app for iOS and android users on the go. Newton stores almost all their crypto in secure, offline locations. While Newton offers secure use of their app and storage in their wallets, we still prefer ensuring keeping your funds safe yourself 

Pros
  • Zero network fees or fees of deposits and withdrawals.
  • Direct Bank integration enables super-easy deposits and withdrawals.
Cons
  • $500 daily trading limit for new users.

Crypto in Canada

Cryptocurrencies are legal in Canada, but crypto not treated as money legally, but as a commodity and the use of cryptocurrency to buy goods is treated as a barter transaction. However, under Canadian Law, you must report any gains or losses from the selling or buying of digital currencies, and any resulting gains or losses could be taxable income or capital for the taxpayer.  

In Canada, companies that deal in virtual currencies are required to register with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada, or also known as FINTRAC, as well as are required to report certain details, including identifying clients, maintaining records of all clients and transactions, and appointing a compliance officer. Since cryptocurrency has been of particular interest to criminal organizations, the Proceeds of Crime and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA) also has specific requirements to monitor activity regarding transactions and activity that are deemed suspicious. This applies to cryptocurrency exchanges based elsewhere that has its services available in Canada.  

Frequently asked cryptocurrency questions

What are cryptocurrencies?

A cryptocurrency is a digital currency issued by a decentralized institution and protected by cryptography. There is a lot to unpack here, so I will try to do this bit by bit.   

First, cryptocurrencies are digital, meaning there is no physical form of the cryptocurrency, and that bitcoin is only used online. However, cryptocurrency can be stored offline for security, as well as online. Cryptocurrencies are decentralized, as they are not operated or controlled by central authorities, as a national bank. Instead, their records are kept in a blockchain, a digital record that is impervious to alterations after they are made.  The blockchain is protected by cryptography, so only participants in the transaction can access the information, keeping you safe from cyber threats and making transactions for the most part anonymous. 

Some critics of cryptocurrencies have brought up issues regarding the anonymity, irreversibility and the decentralized nature of crypto, as they can be prone to cyber attacks, or used to fund crime. In Canada, there are laws for both trading crypto and crypto exchanges, to ensure crypto is not used for criminal purposes in Canada.   

How does cryptocurrency work? 

Cryptocurrencies work through the use of a blockchain, a list of records that are linked using cryptography, that is naturally resistant to modification of its data. When you use a cryptocurrency, like BitCoin, for example, that transaction is recorded in BitCoin’s blockchain and verifies the transaction. This prevents the double-spending of digital currencies while keeping cryptocurrencies decentralized.    

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is the world’s first and most successful cryptocurrency, founded in 2008. Bitcoin can be credited as kicking off the trend of cryptocurrencies as we know them today, as many decentralized peer-to-peer networks have sprung up in the wake of BitcoinBitcoin is today still the biggest cryptocurrency in the world, with the highest value, number of users and number of supported cryptocurrency exchanges.  

What is Ethereum?

Ethereum is an open-source platform of blockchain technology, aiming to create a decentralized suite of financial products and applications that anyone can use. Ethereum has its own cryptocurrency, officially called Ether but often called Etherium or Etherium itself as well. Ethereum is the second-largest cryptocurrency in the world, and in early 2021, hit its highest value to date, of $1,811 as of writing (although this could have easily increased further since published.)

What is the biggest crypto exchange? 

Binance is the largest crypto exchange worldwide, often garnering over $14 Billion in trade volume per day (as of writing). The next biggest Crypto exchanges worldwide are Coinbase Pro and Kraken.  

 Why are bitcoin fees so high? 

Bitcoins fees are prone to change, and that change is related to the demand for Bitcoin. Fees help support Bitcoin miners who need to spend large amounts of electricity in the mining process, and when many people are trading Bitcoin at one time, this increases the amount of computational power needed to process a block.  

When many people are interested in trading Bitcoin at one time, the fees generally increase to prioritize those that really need to process a Bitcoin transaction.  

 Is investing in bitcoin worth it?

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have proven their staying power over the past few years. However, there are many critics and skeptics regarding cryptocurrencies.  

Cryptocurrencies are subject to intense price volatility as a result of their decentralized nature. While this means that Crypto prices can rise drastically in a good market, the opposite is true. However, due to a cap that Bitcoin has implemented that caps the maximum amount of Bitcoin that can possibly exist in the world, Bitcoin cannot be hyperinflated.  

While Bitcoin may be a solid investment opportunity, we recommend doing research into how Bitcoin works before investing, as knowledge may be the barrier between making and losing money in the Cryptocurrency market. However, markets, in general, can be unpredictable and anyone can lose money investing.   

What is an ICO?

ICO stands for initial coin offering. Similar to how an IPO allows investors to get in the ground level of a publicly traded business, and ICO allows investors to get in on a new cryptocurrency. However, due to the deregulated nature of cryptocurrencies, ICO’s are inherently risky, as they are prone to scammers or never getting off the ground. If you are considering investing in an ICO, we suggest you do in-depth research on both the cryptocurrency and the people behind the cryptocurrency, to help distinguish the legitimate from the fraudulent.  

 Are Crypto exchange websites safe?

There have been numerous cyber attacks against cryptocurrencies and crypto exchanges. These attacks have led to people losing their savings and businesses going under. The risk of hacks and cyber attacks has long been one of the biggest negatives of using a cryptocurrency, but many exchanges are taking this into account, offering highly protected services and having back up funds in case they are a target of a cyber-attack. However, many sources highly recommend not keeping your Crypto with an exchange, as there is way less risk if you have your own crypto wallet that you store your cryptocurrency in.   

What are the most popular crypto exchanges in Canada?

While we have covered many of the most popular crypto exchanges in Canada, the most popular of our list include BitBuyCoinsmart and NDAX, however other platforms will be more popular worldwide.  

 Maker vs Taker:  What’s the difference? 

Trading crypto on some exchanges, you will see different fee schedules for what are called “Makers” and “Takers”. Makers make an order on the book of a commodity for trade (in this situation, a crypto currency) that does not match existing offersThis makes liquidity, or the monetary value of the cryptocurrency. “Takers” on the other hand match orders that are on the book, which reduces liquidity. Since crypto exchanges want high liquidity for their offered crypto, maker fees are slightly lower, to encourage more “makers”.   

What Crypto Exchange has the lowest rates in Canada?

Canadians are lucky, as there are several crypto exchanges that have minimal to no fees. Some of the best rates for crypto exchanges in Canada include BitBuy, NDAX.io and Binance, while inexpensive options for buying BitCoin from a broker include Shakepay, Newton and Coinberry.  

How can I buy Bitcoins? 

The easiest way to buy bitcoin or another cryptocurrency is from a crypto exchange or broker.   

Where do I store cryptocurrencies? 

Just like regular currencies, Cryptocurrencies have wallets as well. Only these wallets are digital.  You need a cryptocurrency wallet to manage your digital funds and keep them secure. 

There are two kinds of wallets. Hot wallets are connected to the internet for easy instant access, and include software and cloud wallets, as well as storage that are offered by crypto exchanges.  A cold wallet is typically either a hardware wallet or paper wallet that is not connected to the internet, so you can store and receive funds offline. 

 Hot wallets are best utilized for trading, while those looking to hold all their crypto assets long term use cold wallets, but it is most commonly among those invested in crypto to use both types. We recommend storing your crypto offline in a cold wallet, as this method provides the most protection for your crypto assets.   

Is Bitcoin taxable in Canada? 

Yes. Just like other investments, gains from investing in Bitcoin or other Cryptocurrencies is taxable.  Trading crypto can either be treated as a business, of which 100% of your business income is taxable, whereas if you are trading as a hobby, only 50% of your capital gains are taxable.    

Can I find bitcoin ATMs in Canada?  

If you live in or near a major city, there is a very good chance there will be a Bitcoin ATM near you. You will be able to find a Bitcoin ATM near you by looking at websites like Coin ATM Radar.

How much to invest in cryptocurrency?  

Unfortunately, I am not a financial advisor. If you have this question, you might need to discuss it with one. While cryptocurrencies have been responsible for many millionaires out there, due to the high volatility of Bitcoin and other cryptos, figuring how much to invest means weighing the risks against the reward, and careful financial planning to get the most from your investment.  

 What does cryptocurrency mining mean?  

Remember how I was talking about blockchains? Mining is an important part of maintaining the blockchainas “miners” run computer programs that solve advanced mathematical equations to repeatedly group newly broadcasted transactions into a block, making the blockchain complete and unchangeable.  

This process is called Bitcoin mining and takes a lot of electricity and computational power. In exchange for the electricity and computational power involved in mining bitcoin, miners can earn bitcoin as a result, however, at this rate, you may mine bitcoin for extreme periods of time before seeing any bitcoin in return.  

 How can I avoid crypto scams? 

Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum that feature a blockchain are next to impossible to hack themselves, but that does not mean crypto users are impervious to scams. In fact, more and more scammers are turning to crypto scams due to the fact use of crypto currencies can often be used anonymously. Scammers have been known to impersonate Crypto exchange staff, trying to get sensitive information about your account so they can access it. Other scammers may pose as Crypto exchange accounts to scam people in the guise of giveaways or big investment opportunities. Here are three pieces of advice we have for people to avoid crypto scams:  

  • Keep your information safe. Do not give anyone remote access to your machine, any passwords or security codes, or any information by outbound calls. Scammers can impersonate staff of crypto exchanges, sometimes very well, so you should ensure that the person you are speaking to is legit if they ask anything of you that makes you feel less secure about the management of your cryptocurrencies. You can do this by contacting your exchange by verified methods, like their listed emails and phone numbers on their websites (just keep in mind that scammers can call you with a number that appears to belong to your exchange). 
  • Double-check with legitimate representations of your exchange. Scammers will doctor fake social media posts and promotions all the time, but these often unravel if you talk to a representative of your crypto exchange.  
  • The old credo of if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is” rings very true when it comes to crypto investing.  

 Can you get rich off Bitcoin? 

Bitcoin first made waves for its huge rise in value in 2017, which made many early investors in Bitcoin multi-millionaires. While the potential for huge returns exists, since Bitcoin carries such a higher price tag these days, it is very hard for new investors to get their foot in the door. Just like any type of investing, there is no promise you will see returns on your investment.   

 What is Facebook Libra?  

Libra is a cryptocurrency led by the social media giant that is set to launch in 2021. While the cryptocurrency has been in the works for a while now, there has been many issues that have arisen during the crypto’s development, with many backers leaving and distancing themselves from the project in 2019. Ultimately, with Facebook’s questionable privacy policies and the issues the cryptocurrency has faced over its development, we do not have high hopes for Libra.  

 What determines the price of 1 Bitcoin?  

Simply put, supply and demand. As more people buy bitcoin, the price will go up, and if people stop buying bitcoin, the price will go down. Additionally, since there is a max amount of Bitcoin that can be in circulation and new bitcoins are being created at lower rates, if demand does not follow this level of inflation, the price of a bitcoin can be very volatile.

 What can you do with Bitcoin?  

While more and more businesses are accepting Bitcoin transactions, it is more common for people to invest in Bitcointrading it for fiat currencies or other cryptocurrencies or holding onto it until the price is right. Some online retailers currently accept bitcoin and other crypto currencies, and as crypto become mainstream, you can expect more retailers to accept Bitcoin in the near future.  

 Can I get cryptocurrency insurance in Canada? 

As Cryptocurrencies are becoming a more common investing tool, companies are offering insurance to protect you in case of a cyber attack. Some exchanges have partnered with insurance companies to protect their clients, while some insurance companies offer Canadian wide insurance to your cryptocurrency funds.  

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About the author

Sam Beetham

Sam Beetham is a writer who has accomplished his childhood dream of rating things professionally. When not gazing deeply into the LCD display, he can be found cooking, designing DND dungeons or working on music with his band.
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