The Best Crypto Exchanges
Making Crypto Simple
There are a few good options in Canada for Crypto exchanges. We’ve assessed a number of factors when putting together this list, including ease of use, fees, supported cryptocurrencies, trading features and support.
Over the years we’ve reviewed 100’s of different exchanges all over the world. Bitbuy is definitely the best option in Canada for both new and experienced users.
|Exchange Website||Rating||Currencies||Available Cryptocurrencies||Fees||Our Review||Visit Site|
|5/5||CAD||10+ Cryptocurrencies||0.2%||NDAX Review||Visit Site|
|4/5||CAD||8+ Cryptocurrencies||0.5%||Bitbuy Review||Visit Site|
|4/5||CAD||5 Cryptocurrencies||0.5%||Coinberry Review||Visit Site|
|3.5/5||CAD||8 Cryptocurrencies||0.7%||Newton Review||Visit Site|
|3/5||USD||3 Cryptocurrencies||4%||Coinbase Review||Visit Site|
|3/5||Crypto||150+ Cryptocurrencies||0.1%||Binance Review||Visit Site|
|2.5/5||USD & EUR||7 Cryptocurrencies||6%||Visit Site|
|2.5/5||GBP & USD||6 Cryptocurrencies||Daily Fees||Visit Site|
|2.5/5||USD, GBP & EUR||30+ Cryptocurrencies||0.26%||Visit Site|
|2/5||USD||150+ Cryptocurrencies||0.1%||Visit Site|
|2/5||USD||150+ Cryptocurrencies||0.5%||Visit Site|
The Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges in Canada
1. NDAX Exchange
Our team is unanimous on its decision that NDAX is the best cryptocurrency exchange in Canada.
The platform is based out of Calgary and was launched in 2018 quickly becoming very popular in Canada. It has the backing of a major Canadian bank, so it’s come into the scene very well established.
NDAX offers a number of different ways to fund your trading account including Interac, Direct Wire Transfer, Bank Transfer, Debit Card & Credit Card.
One of the main things people love about NDAX is their support team. It has the feeling of a small business with amount of attention given.
The platform of course complies with Canadian KYC regulations and is registered as a money service business (MSB) with FINTRAC.
2. Bitbuy Exchange
The platform was launched in 2013, under the name InstaBT, and was used for buying Bitcoin only. In 2016, it was rebranded as Bitbuy and added Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, XRP, EOS, and Stellar XLM to its list of supported coins. You can make a deposit using these seven cryptos or use CAD instead.
To deposit CAD, you can use wire transfer, Interac e-Transfer, or Express Interac e-Transfer. Unfortunately, Bitbuy doesn’t support credit or debit cards at the moment.
Bitbuy has been praised for the helpfulness of its customer support team. They have a toll-free number that users can call to speak with one of their agents. Their website also has a number of support guides and educational material for beginners.
The platform complies with Canadian KYC regulations but still manages to keep the sign-up process quick and simple. Bitbuy is suitable for both newcomers and experts. The latter are invited to use Bitbuy “Pro Trade”, their more advanced trading platform, to swap cryptos, make limit orders, and follow the live order book closely.
3. Coinberry Exchange
Coinberry is the second Canadian platform on our list, founded in 2017. The fact that it’s registered with the Canadian Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre makes Coinberry a trustworthy trading platform.
Users can buy and sell some of the most popular cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ripple, and Stellar. Coinberry is more like a brokerage than a typical crypto exchange, meaning that you buy cryptos from and sell them to the platform itself in exchange for fiat currencies.
Credit and debit cards are accepted for making deposits, together with e-Transfers and wire transfers. Customers can have peace of mind knowing that Coinberry employs CDIC insured segregated banking, i.e. stores customer funds separately from the company’s funds.
4. Newton Exchange
Newton is a new Canadian crypto exchange that has won the hearts of many in just a short time. The platform was founded in 2018 in Toronto. The main incentive of Newton’s founders was to help popularize cryptocurrency in Canada, as Canadians are still limited in their choice of exchanges compared to the US or Australia, for example.
Right from the start, Newton was registered with FINTRAC as well and adheres to their AML regulations. This has helped the platform gain even more support from Canadian traders.
The exchange supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple, Monero, Tether, Bitcoin Cash, Stellar Lumens, USD Coin, and QCAD that you can purchase with CAD. To store the cryptocurrencies you’ve bought, Newton provides a secure digital wallet.
The great thing about Newton is that it’s commission free! Newton is like a brokerage, which means they buy the coins beforehand and sell them to their users. The only way Newton makes a profit is from the “bid-ask spread” or the difference between the buying and selling price.
When you activate your account, you have a trading limit of up to $500 CAD per day. As you continue using the platform, the limit goes to $5,000 CAD per day, with the final limit being no more than $50,000 CAD.
So far, we’ve had three extraordinary Canadian exchanges. Now, let’s take a look at some international exchanges that work for Canadian residents too.
Coinbase is an American-based crypto exchange and brokerage, founded in 2012. It’s continuously being praised for its user-friendly interface and considered as one of the most reliable online platforms, licensed by different financial authorities and compliant with their AML and KYC regulatory policies.
To protect the company from the volatility of new unsteady altcoins, Coinbase has adopted a Digital Asset Framework that assesses cryptocurrencies against a number of criteria. For example, they take a closer look at the currency’s market capitalization, customer demand, and liquidity among other things.
As a result, Coinbase currently supports the top four cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin. They can be bought using wire or bank transfer, credit or debit card, and come with affordable transaction fees.
Binance originally comes from China and represents the brainchild of Chinese developer Changpeng Zhao, who launched the platform in 2017. Cryptocurrency regulations are particularly strict in China, so the platform had to be relocated to crypto-friendly Malta.
Binance supports an extensive list of cryptocurrencies, from the most popular to the least-known ones that appeal to the most adventurous of traders. The exchange has even created its own token, the Binance token (BNB). Users who own BNB, have the option to spend them when paying for transaction fees, and receive a 50% discount.
This crypto exchange is known among traders worldwide for its state-of-the-art security methods. The most groundbreaking feature is SAFU, the Secure Asset Fund for Users, a secure vault to which Binance allocates 10% of all collected fees to cover potential losses in a case of a detrimental security breach.
This is exactly what happened in May 2019, when the platform suffered a major hacking attack in which over $40 million were stolen. Thanks to SAFU, Binance was able to compensate its users for the stolen funds.
Learn More About Cryptocurrency Exchanges
Before you try your hand at crypto trading, you have to make sure you find a crypto exchange that works for your location, target currency, payment method, etc.
If you already have some experience with this market, you know you can choose between crypto to crypto or fiat to crypto exchange. As for you, novices, we recommend sticking to the latter one, at least until you purchase enough cryptocurrencies.
You’re probably aware that the crypto industry receives different treatment across the world, which is why apart from some universal advice, this guide focuses strictly on the Canadian crypto market and the best crypto exchanges in Canada.
So, without further ado, let’s begin!
What Are Cryptocurrencies?
Cryptocurrencies are digital assets used as mediums of exchange. They are secured with cryptographic proof, a method used both to generate new coins and verify cryptocurrency transactions that are recorded and stored on digital ledgers called blockchains.
Although there have been numerous attempts at designing a digital coin in the past, none of the developers were able to both create a decentralized currency and protect it from double-spending without intermediaries.
In late 2008, a software developer under the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto published Bitcoin’s white paper and, for the first time, introduced a revolutionary technology that solves the problem of double-spending with cryptographic proof.
Bitcoin and the payment platform allow users to make decentralized, pseudonymous transactions, faster and cheaper. These transactions are immutable and irreversible, they’re permanently stored and publicly displayed on the blockchain.
These features make Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies perfect for either short-term or long-term investments as stores of value, payment methods that should gain wider adoption in the future, and utility tokens for numerous blockchain-based projects and applications. (check our tutorial on how to buy bitcoin in Canada for more info)
For example, Ethereum is a popular cryptocurrency used for building smart contracts and dApps on its native Turing-complete network. We have coins like Ripple, Litecoin, and NEO that have taken most of Bitcoin and Ethereum’s characteristics and improved them further to achieve greater scalability and transaction throughput.
What Are Crypto Exchanges?
Cryptocurrency exchanges are online platforms, available on your computers or mobile devices, where you can sell, transfer, store, or buy cryptocurrencies in Canada.
Based on your preference, you can choose to trade them with fiat currencies on fiat to crypto exchanges or trade one crypto against another on crypto to crypto exchanges. That’s just the first choice to make out of many. Due to a recent rise in the popularity of these assets, today we have over a thousand different platforms to choose from.
In the end, the main decision you’ll make is between using a centralized (traditional) exchange or a decentralized (peer to peer) crypto exchange.
Centralized exchanges are called traditional because they were the first type of exchanges available online. They function similarly to how traditional financial institutions such as banks function, by overseeing customers’ transactions and offering escrow services.
The main advantages of using centralized exchanges are higher liquidity, mostly because these platforms buy and support only cryptocurrencies that are in high demand by customers and as a result risk-free for their company; and greater safety, as the exchanges invest a lot of money into high-level security methods to meet the authorities’ regulatory criteria and stay in business.
However, trading on centralized exchanges can cost you a portion of your privacy as you’ll be asked to provide personal data and a photo of your ID to be verified on any of these platforms.
If you believe that centralized exchanges go against the fundamental ideology of cryptocurrencies, you can choose a decentralized exchange instead. These platforms directly connect buyers and sellers and let them agree on the trading terms on their own.
You don’t have to verify your identity for your account to be accepted, simply use your email address to sign up. To protect yourself, always check the transaction history and reputation of the user you’re buying your coins from.
The Final Checklist
At this point in the text, you probably feel more comfortable and knowledgeable about crypto exchanges. Maybe you even have a favorite one among the top five on our list. Before you draw the final judgment, make sure you go through every single point on our checklist:
- Are you a crypto trading beginner or an experienced trader? If you’re a beginner, we advise you to stick to user-friendly platforms with easily-navigable interfaces.
- Have you purchased any cryptocurrencies yet? If you haven’t, it would be much easier for you to use fiat to crypto exchange as an entry point.
- Is your target cryptocurrency listed on the exchange?
- Do you have an online wallet you could use for storing crypto? If you don’t, why not find an exchange that provides one too.
- Are the transaction fees competitive or unreasonably high? Are there any deposit or withdrawal fees? This can be a decisive factor if you can’t make up your mind between two otherwise similar platforms.
- Are you satisfied with the available payment methods?
- Do you need to complete a KYC check to register for an account and are you okay with that? If you don’t like sharing your private data online, maybe it’s better to use a decentralized exchange.
- Can you activate two-factor authentication and address whitelist on your account?
- What kind of customer support do they offer?
Frequently Asked Questions
Once again, to choose a crypto exchange, you need to come up with an investment strategy first. Later, you can compare it with the features offered by some of the crypto exchanges we recommended. For example, does it support the currency you want to invest in and the payment method you’re most willing to use? Is it secure enough? Is it affordable enough?
On a global scale, Binance has been singled out as the biggest crypto exchange on major crypto sites like CoinMarketCap, judged by the platform’s trading volume, the number of markets, and liquidity.
Bitbuy is our number one choice when it comes to choosing a crypto exchange in Canada! You get a good choice of cryptocurrencies, affordable fees, great customer support, and a variety of trading options.
Again, our vote goes to Bitbuy. The platform uses SSL encryption, 2FA, and stores 95% of all customer funds in cold storage.
Not surprisingly, Satoshi Nakamoto, Bitcoin’s founder, owns the most BTC or approximately 1.1 million BTC.
Bitcoin miners spend a lot of computational power and time to mine bitcoins, especially now that the mining difficulty has been increased due to Bitcoin’s popularity. As a result, they prioritize transactions with a higher fee amount included in the total sum, for their work to pay off.
All of Bitcoin’s transaction fees end up in miners’ hands, forming part of their mining reward together with some BTC.